SUNDERLAND, United Kingdom (AFP) - West Brom goalkeeper Ben Foster frustrated relegation-threatened Sunderland in a goalless draw on Saturday which left the hosts mired in the drop zone.
A first clean sheet in 18 games for Sam Allardyce's home side gave them just a single point at the Stadium of Light and compounded their misery as they are now four points from safety after Norwich beat Newcastle.
The hosts had a Dame N'Doye injury-time goal disallowed as the 31-year-old Senegalese striker was adjudged to be offside.
But Foster made important saves from Lee Cattermole, Jan Kirchhoff, Fabio Borini and a late Jermain Defoe effort which helped Tony Pulis' midtable side reach the magic 40 points safety mark.
It was a frustrating afternoon for Allardyce's side after dominating play with two chances in the first half - Defoe sending a Patrick van Aanholt through ball wide on 19 minutes with new Tunisian signing Wahbi Khazri's cross to Cattermole a quarter of an hour later cleared by Foster.
The Black Cats continued to pile on the pressure after the break but Foster again denied Kirchhoff, Borini and DeAndre Yedlin.
Borini might have snatched the win five minutes from time, but Foster was once again equal to the task as he dived to his left to hold and again stopped a Defoe strike with his foot with a minute remaining.
By contrast home keeper Vito Mannone was largely untroubled by the West Brom attack.