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Cardiff downed by West Bromwich Albion new boys

13 Feb 2024 3 minute read
West Bromwich Albion’s Darnell Furlong (left) and Cardiff City’s Josh Wilson-Esbrand battle for the ball during the Sky Bet Championship match at The Hawthorns, West Bromwich. Credit: Bradley Collyer/PA Wire.

January signings Mikey Johnston and Andreas Weimann scored in either half as West Brom beat the Bluebirds 2-0 for a fifth straight Championship home win.

Johnston struck inside the first minute when he turned home Tom Fellows’ delivery from the right. In the 80th minute, Weimann scored his second goal in Albion colours when he rounded off a smart move involving his captain Jed Wallace.

It took West Brom all of 30 seconds to open the scoring. Darnell Furlong clipped the ball down the wing for Fellows and he was afforded the space to run at Jamilu Collins before pulling the ball back into the path of the onrushing Johnston who, on his full debut for the hosts, steered tidily beyond visiting goalkeeper Ethan Horvath.

The Hawthorns rose in the 12th minute to pay tribute with applause to stricken forward Daryl Dike. The United States international ruptured his Achilles in the 2-2 draw at Ipswich on Saturday and he is due for surgery and an extended period on the sidelines. Dike’s team-mates had worn T-shirts with his name and number on their backs while they were warming up before kick-off.

Despite the early setback, Cardiff were by no means deterred. Josh Wilson-Esbrand hit an admittedly hopeful shot tamely into Alex Palmer’s arms, before Nat Phillips caused problems from a David Turnbull free-kick and sparked panic before Albion hurried a clearance.

The hosts had an opening to double their advantage 25 minutes in, when the ball was worked down the left and Okay Yokuslu turned the ball into the path of midfield partner Alex Mowatt, but he could not keep his curling attempt beneath the crossbar.

While the score remained at one, Cardiff were always encouraged, yet there was little to report by way of second-half action until Kion Etete passed up a glaring opportunity to level for the visitors.

Wilson-Esbrand sent a deep cross to the back post, where the ball was cushioned down by Aaron Ramsey for Etete. From inside the six-yard box, he could only lift the ball over the bar.

While those Cardiff substitutes did not combine successfully, West Brom’s did. With 10 minutes remaining, Albion broke through Nathaniel Chalobah who set loose winger Wallace down the right. His cross was pinpoint for Weimann, who rolled the ball home to make the points secure.


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