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Baggies march on

22 Aug 2009 16:37:03

Baggies march on

Impressive West Brom beat Ipswich 2-0 at the Hawthorns to maintain their unbeaten start to the Championship campaign. Roberto Di Matteo's side took the lead in the 10th minute when Youssouf Mulumbu drilled home his first goal for the club. They then doubled the advantage when Robert Koren went round the diving Richard Wright and slotted home. An inspired Wright pulled off a string of fine stops to keep Ipswich in the game, including a penalty save from Luke Moore late on. At the other end, Pim Balkestein and Jonathan Walters both went close for Ipswich but the Tractor Boys were unable to find a way back as West Brom moved level on points with Middlesbrough and Newcastle at the top. The Baggies now have 10 points from their opening four games, while Roy Keane's side are second from bottom, with just one point so far. Flying start The home side came flying out the traps and went in front when Joe Mattock's header was cleared off the line by David Wright but the rebound fell to Mulumbu who crashed the ball in from the edge of the box. However Ipswich responded well and could have levelled soon after when Lee Martin played in Connor Wickham but the teenager's effort was too weak. On the half-hour mark Wright came to the fore with a superb double save to prevent West Brom doubling their lead. Owen Garvan gave the ball away in midfield and Moore's powerful low effort was kept out by Wright who got up and made a reflex save to deny Koren with the rebound, although the ref blew for off-side. With 38 minutes gone Wright could do nothing to prevent West Brom doubling their lead when Koren played a superb one-two with Chris Wood before producing a deft finish. Minutes later it was almost 3-0 when Moore knocked the ball down for Wood who took the shot early only to see Wright get down to his left and make another excellent save. Second periodIpswich began the second-half well but this time it was Scott Carson's turn to make an impression between the sticks as he made a double save to deny substitute Alan Quinn and then Martin. At the other end Moore latched on to a flick-on and struck a fierce effort but Wright got down well to save at his near post. The game completely opened up and Walters tried his luck from distance only to see Carson make an excellent stop to tip the ball round the post. Both goalkeepers were in excellent form and Wright kept out a close-range effort from Jerome Thomas before Carson clawed out a header from Balkestein. With 17 minutes remaining Shaun Cummings burst into the right side of the box and was brought down by a reckless challenge from Tommy Smith. Almost inevitably Wright, who did not deserve to be on the losing side, saved Moore's penalty and then denied the former Aston Villa man late on to cap a fine performance.


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