Football: West Brom fightback puts pressure on Bournemouth

West Bromwich Albion's Gareth McAuley celebrates scoring their second goal with team mates.
West Bromwich Albion's Gareth McAuley celebrates scoring their second goal with team mates.PHOTO: REUTERS

WEST BROMWICH, United Kingdom (AFP) - West Bromwich Albion surged back from an early goal down to pile pressure on struggling Bournemouth with a 2-1 win at the Hawthorns on Saturday (Feb 25).

Tony Pulis' side trailed to Josh King's fifth-minute penalty, but goals from defenders Craig Dawson and Gareth McAuley turned the game on its head before half-time as Albion won at home for the seventh time in the last eight outings.

The Baggies are flying high in eighth place in the Premier League and dreaming of qualification for next season's Europa League.

In contrast, Bournemouth are only five points above the relegation zone after a fourth successive league defeat and peering nervously over their shoulders.

In his first game since agreeing to become Saudi Arabia's new head of officials, referee Mark Clattenburg was asked to make a big decision after only five minutes when Allan Nyom brought down Ryan Fraser.

Clattenburg gave the penalty and King confidently tucked the spot-kick into the bottom corner, sending Ben Foster the wrong way.

Dawson's deflected strike from the edge of the area brought the Baggies level after 10 minutes as the ball flicked off Charlie Daniels and flew into the roof of the net.

It was West Brom's 35th Premier League goal of the season and they struck again in the 22nd minute.

Bournemouth goalkeeper Artur Boruc failed to claim a corner, causing a scramble inside the penalty area, and McAuley was on hand to turn the ball in from close range.

It was a nice way for the defender to mark the 500th club appearance of his career but a brave block shortly afterwards to repel a goal-bound effort by Jack Wilshere may have pleased him as much.

Clattenburg frustrated the home fans by disallowing Nacer Chadli's headed effort early in the second half and it needed a fine Foster save from Tyrone Mings to preserve the points in the final seconds.