West Brom 0-1 Wigan Athletic: Wolverhampton-born Sam Morsy strike gives Latics shock win at Championship leaders Albion
- Sam Morsy’s 73rd minute goal gives Wigan a shock with at leaders West Brom
- Wigan move out of the relegation zone with Middlesbrough dropping in
- Albion now sit just one point above second-placed Leeds at the top of the table
- Leeds had beaten Hull 4-0 earlier in the day to reduce Albion’s lead at the top
First Leeds, now West Brom. However Wigan’s relegation fight pans out, Paul Cook’s side can rightly claim they have had a say in the goings-on at the top of the Championship.
Beating the two best sides in the division takes some doing, especially when you are taking aim from the bottom of the table.
Albion coach Slaven Bilic sensed danger and warned his players in advance, then sat back and watched them slide straight into the Wigan trap.
Sam Morsy (second right) gave Wigan a shock lead over West Brom in the 73rd minute
The Wolverhampton-born man celebrated an important goal for his relegation-threatened side
Skipper Sam Morsy, born and bred in the Black Country and a son of Wolverhampton Wanderers, rubbed salt into the wound with the only goal of a game which extended the week’s work to three wins, three clean sheets, and a place outside the bottom three.
‘I showed the players the table of the last seven games,’ Bilic revealed afterwards. ‘We were number one and Wigan were in second. It is easy to say we didn’t take the game seriously enough. We did.
‘We were not good enough, we looked tired, without spark, without fluidity. We were second best and didn’t manage the ball well.
West Brom manager Slaven Bilic admitted his side were second best against the Latics
The result leaves the Baggies just one point ahead of second-placed Leeds United
‘It is very flat and silent in the dressing room. I have told them they have to come tomorrow to the training ground with smiles on faces and determination to learn from these mistakes. We have to bounce back. Don’t doubt anything.’
Wigan have had a good February and have only lost one in eight including that shock win at Leeds, who remain a point behind Albion.
The moment which decided this contest came in the second half. After a game of pinball which started with a corner from Michael Jacobs, the ball was hooked back into the area by Cedric Kipre, Morsy shot through the crowd and Sam Johnstone was beaten.
‘We haven’t done anything different,’ insisted Cook, whose team have collected 17 out of 24 points. ‘People must be thinking we’re drinking different water – we’re not.
Wigan boss Paul Cook was delighted with his side’s display at the Hawthorns
‘West Brom are fantastic. I have seen them here and no one gets out alive in general. This a three-game week. They will feel down for an hour or two but they have great quality and will go up.’
A miserable afternoon was compounded by injury to key defender Ahmed Hegazi, who hurt his thigh.
‘It’s not a cramp,’ Bilic added: ‘We have to wait for a scan but it is not a knock. Hopefully not a big one and he can be back soon.’
Slaven Bilic’s side lost defender Ahmed Hegazi (left) to injury in the first-half
The warning signs were almost immediate with Morsy’s initial shot blocked by Johnstone and then Joe Williams going close with the follow-up.
West Brom fans are used to their team going up and down and tend to turn quite quickly. The sighs and groans spoke volumes and it is that which Bilic must deal with first. He has no doubts and he has to hope the players are not starting to doubt either.
WEST BROM VS WIGAN MATCH STATS
West Brom (4-3-3): Sam Johnstone; Dara O’Shea, Semi Ajayi, Ahmed Hegazy (sub Kyle Bartley 43), Conor Townsend; Rekeem Harper (sub Matt Phillips 55) , Jake Livermore, Filip Krovinovic; Matheus Pereira, Hal Robson-Kanu, Callum Robinson (sub Kamil Grosicki 61)
Substitutes not used: Jonathan Bond, Darnell Furlong, Charlie Austin, Gareth Barry
Bookings: Townsend, Pereira
Wigan Athletic (4-2-3-1): David Marshall; Nathan Byrne, Cedric Kipre, Leon Balogun (sub Kai Naismith 69), Tom Pearce; Sam Morsy, Joe Williams; Jamal Lowe, Gary Roberts (sub Lee Evans 80), Gavin Massey (sub Michael Jacobs 58); Kieffer Moore
Goal: Morsy 73
Substitutes not used: Jamie Jones, Antony Pilkington, Joe Garner, Jan Mlakar
Referee: Tony Harrington
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