West Bromwich Albion 0 - Nottingham Forest 0

Date: Friday 26th November 2021 Live on Sky Sports
Competition: Sky Bet Championship
Johnstone 6.4, Kipré 4.9, Bartley 4.4, Clarke 6.3, Furlong 3.6, Molumby 3.6, Mowatt 4.5, Townsend 6.5, Diangana 3.8 (Phillips, 60 4.4), Grant 4.2 (Hugill, 78 2.5), Robinson 4.7 (Reach, 72 4.0)
Unused subs: Button, Ajayi, Gardner-Hickman, Fellows
Sent off: Molumby (70, Foul/2nd yellow)
Manager: Valérien Ismaël  2.9
Samba, Worrall, McKenna, Figueiredo (Mighten, 72), Spence, Garner, Yates, Bong, Zinckernagel (Lolley, 66), Grabban, Johnson
Unused subs: Horvath, Cafu, Ojeda, Dräger, Taylor
Referee: Gavin Ward 4.4
Attendance: 22,424   Home Fans 5.6   Away Fans 5.1
Submit your ratings for this game by clicking here: Ratings submitted so far: 19

Brendan Clegg:

Hate to be repeating myself but then again that’s exactly what our idiot Head Coach is doing every game.

Same tactics. Same formation. Same football by numbers. They should actually suspend any in game betting on our subs - actually maybe this is all a conspiracy between Ismael, Mr Lai and a Chinese black market gambling consortium in order for our absent owner to recoup his investment. It would be more plausible than the explanation that this absolute chancer was appointed and keeps his job on merit.

Forest were absolutely dreadful and, yes, maybe we missed a couple of big chances that would’ve papered over things but if there was ever a game to sacrifice a centre back for an extra attacker this was it.

Until the red card Forest didn’t want to know and even after it they were still there for the taking.

It’s bleak and can’t end soon enough. I’m not with the “sack the board” squad - it’s pointless and ain’t going to happen but the manager can be gotten rid of with enough pressure. Bilic managed to get us promoted, in our 2nd year of parachute payments, with this same absent board and the ghastly Dowling stinking the place out and making enemies everywhere.

We absolutely need a striker but I just don’t accept that, in a 4-2-3-1, Grady left, Phillips right, Robinson in the hole with Grant ahead of him isn’t enough to win most games with frankly any sitting two midfielders and back four. We’ve seen the standard of this league and it’s terrible.


  • SJ - 7 Decent save to keep us in it but not much to do.
  • Kipre - 6 Strong but I still feel like the risk is always there.
  • Bartley - 6 Forest were so bad he couldn’t even gift them a goal from a terrible pass out.
  • Clarke - 6 He does love an absolutely wild and pointless punt forward, almost basking in the predictable applause of his deluded manager on the sidelines when he does it.
  • Furlong - 5 All composure has escaped him and his throws were rubbish too. Looks like one the manager has lost.
  • Mowatt - 5 Shocking distribution at times. The jury still out on whether he’s actually any good.
  • Mulumby - 5 Had until the red card shown good energy but it was a stupid tackle at a stupid time.
  • Townsend - 6 Had a go, there were quite a few errors in his game.
  • Diangana - 4 Has fallen to pieces. We rebuild him by playing him as a left winger, in his natural position, something Ismael has failed to do.
  • Robinson - 6 Did okay but you feel he needs someone to play off as he hasn’t got the pace to escape defenders.
  • Grant - 5 I’m not a fan generally and it didn’t all work but he did attack and cross the ball tonight consistently.
  • Phillips - 6 Nearly made a few things happen.
  • Reach - 4 No, me neither.
  • Hugill - 3 what’s the point now? Ajayi would be more of a threat. I’m not joking.


We simply cannot buy a goal. Every season there are two outstanding teams in the Championship and this time round it is Fulham and Bournemouth. Good luck to them. The Premier league is a poisoned chalice and surely one year a promoted team will go back down without a win. It will be humiliating and not good for football. The chasm between the Premier and the lower leagues is vast.

But apropos the Championship the rest of the teams in this division are very modest and we should be taking them apart playing attractive football. This is dire! I was worried when we signed this manager from Barnsley. I am even more worried now. Buying down to a price is now embedded in West Brom and it simply isn't working. Buying on the cheap never works whatever walk of life. The writing has been on the wall for years. Jeremy Peace ran the club as if it were a small company making aluminium step ladders in Smethwick. Sorry Smethwick. Football isn't like that.

We are stuck with a dud owner, a dud board of directors and a third rate manager who just does not get it.

PS. GOOD NEWS. My crowd funding initiative to buy a goal has now raised over fourteen pounds.

Kev Buckley:

Absolutely f**king shyte

Both sides, one mid-table, and one heading there, content to just knock it long and hope for something.

If ever a game was crying out for a change of manager, then this one was it, although there may actually have been a subtle change to the one plan that Ismael arrived with, in that his rigid 3-4-3, knock it long and press high, now seems to have evolved into a rigid 3-4-3, knock it long, but don't even bother with the press anymore: just wait for the other side to give it back so that it can be knocked long again.

Presumably there is a fence across the half-way line at the training ground, that Ismael brought with him from Barnsley and had installed, so as to get the players used to knocking it long over that fence, though given the number of passes along the ground that went astray, maybe knocking it long is all he has to work with.

Most of the first half was taken up with players taking way too long to get the ball back into play from throw-ins and free-kicks, although Diangana, deployed so as to have little impact on the right so as to allow Grant to have little impact over on the left, did get in one dribble and a shot on target, but pretty much everything else, not that there was that much else, was high or wide or both.

Most notable miss goes to Furlong, from around the penalty spot, after Grant made the one impact he needs to make per game to keep himself in the starting XI for the next game, in pulling one back from the goal-line.

As for the second half, the Hawthorns' cuckoo clock's doors opened on the hour and the Phillips figurine rotated out, whilst the Diangana figurine, having had little impact on the right rotated in, so that the Robinson figurine could be rotated around into the player having little impact on the right role, thereby making no difference to the plan that requires us do little to nothing on the right or the left.

The sending-off of Molumby, for a second yellow, didn't seem make any difference either, and nor did "sacrificing" Robinson for Reach, though perhaps that was the point of that change?

As for the swapping of Grant for Hugill, well, as it's hard to count the latter blazing over, from 15 yards in stoppage time, as much of a difference, given that the former had already blazed one over, then I think it's fair to say that that change made no difference either, which leaves us with:

Absolutely f**king shyte.

Mark Koppel:

5 games in November and just 2 goals scored. Hmmmm!

Player Ratings:

  • Johnstone 7 - Not too much to do but great save off Clarke's deflection when needed. His kicking last night was also an improvement and I think only one was kicked out for a thrown-in, a record.
  • 'Club Feet' Furlong 2 - If this most technically incompetent player ever is better than Gardner-Hickman, then I know zero about football. Cannot kick the ball properly at all which I thought was the absolute minimum to be a professional footballer. Not even his so-called long throws ever got past the first Defender.
  • Clarke 8 - MOM in my opinion. Strong in his challenges, used the ball well, and even set up Huge Bill brilliantly for what should have been the winner.
  • Kipre 7 - Looked a touch nervous at times, but you would be stuck between Bartley and Furlong. Can actually play football and his passing is 10 times better than the aforementioned.
  • Donkey Bartley 4 - Back to one of the other 3 jokers along with Club Feet and Joke Livermore. Slow, cannot pass, and has to be bailed out by team colleagues on at least 2 occasions most games. For example, shocking pass out first half which should have been punished. A ridiculous unchallenged slide second half that again set up Forest for a goal chance, this time bailed out by Clarke. Captain????? All he does is flap his arms and blame everyone else for his mistakes.
  • Townsend 6.5 - Some great runs down the left and several crosses, some dangerous, some wayward. Good tackling as well.
  • Mowatt 6 - Some have said he struggles with and after injuries. Not quite back to his early season form then but I still think he is our best central midfield option.
  • Molumby 5 - Better than Joke Livermore, but that isn't saying much. What a stupid challenge to get sent off, especially when you are already on a yellow. Time for Val and Snod to kiss and make up.
  • Grady 5.5 - Given that he has been better in the past still shows his potential. I think he has lost confidence and I would support continuing with him for now.
  • Grant 6 - Some great runs down the left first half, and still the player most likely to score. So why take him off when we need a goal?
  • Robinson 6 - Think he played ok and second most likely player to score. But he was given a role to play that doesn't suit him.


  • Phillips 6 - Tried his best but again not played in a role that is his best.
  • Reach 6 - Does get up and down quite well. Lacks quality and pace though.
  • Huge Bill 2 - Could be actually be even worse than Kenneth?

Pete Cottrell:

Last 6 matches: 98 Goal attempts, 20 on target (20%), 3 scored (3%). Last time I checked, Fulham and Bournemouth were about the same for goal attempts, but twice as many were on target and seven times as many resulted in a goal. Not difficult to see what the problem is, is it?

The undeniable fact is that our lot literally cannot hit a barn door at three paces.