West Brom have a mountain to climb on Tuesday after falling to a 2-1 defeat to Aston Villa in the first leg of their Championship playoff semi-final.
The Baggies, ending the game with ten men, led the game early on through Dwight Gayle.
The forward took advantage of some poor Aston Villa play to steal the ball and finish past Villa goalie Jed Steer.
Albion would hold the lead until past half-time when Conor Hourihane scored the equaliser.
Villa would then get a second, with Tammy Abraham scoring from the spot after Kieran Gibbs gave away a penalty.
Things would then go from bad to worse for Albion, with Dwight Gayle handed his marching orders for a challenge on Steer.
This leaves Albion in a difficult position, with the Baggies having to recover in the next leg on Tuesday.
Here’s four findings from the defeat for the Albion at Villa Park.
Needless yellow cards
Gayle’s yellow cards were both meaningless, and, despite them being debatable, it’s completely needless that Gayle could miss the second leg because of it.
Watching the second half, you’d hardly know that this game was a playoff fixture. Albion looked second best, and the commitment of certain players was worrying, apart from maybe Dwight Gayle.
Tie is not over
As football has shown us this week, no lead is a solid one. Albion have a chance at the Hawthorns, but they will need to improve massively.
Villa's key threats need to be contained
Aston Villa’s Jack Grealish ran the show today. If Albion are to get to Wembley, they need to contain him.
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