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West Brom 0 - 0 City

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City went into this match looking for their first win of the season; and with slightly better composure in front of goal we would have got it! As it was, the Baggies escaped with a point and their first clean sheet. The single point, however, was sufficient to lift us out of the relegation zone as Palace, Southampton and Blackburn all lost.

Worthy put out the same side that started against Pompey two weeks ago; which meant McKenzie got his second start of the season as City lined up in a straight 4-4-2. The only change was on the bench, with Safri returning fit from International duty.

West Brom had the first effort of the match when Zoltan Gera fired just past the far post, but minutes later McKenzie missed a great chance to stake a claim for a permanent place in City’s attack. Indeed it was his strike partner Huckerby who carved out the chance with a superbly flighted cross to the far post where McKenzie had stolen in unmarked. Unfortunately Leon’s volley from twelve yards whistled over Hoult’s crossbar.

City were knocking the ball around confidently and retained possession well, without creating many clear-cut chances. But Huckerby then had two attempts to break the deadlock and grab a fully deserved half-time lead. The first was entirely self-made; Hucks went on one of his trademark mazy runs before firing in a powerful shot that was just a little too straight, allowing Hoult to collect safely.

The second was thanks to the battling efforts of McKenzie who tackled Darren Moore before turning and threading a perfect pass into the path of Huckerby for a clear run at goal. Unfortunately the finish failed to live up to the build up and Hucks got his attempted curler horribly wrong.

City continued to press forward, with West Brom offering little in the way of creativity. The next chance fell to Jonson, again after good work from Huckerby, although his pass was clearly intended for McKenzie. Jonson called and Leon stepped aside as Jonson let fly, but McKenzie’s presence probably explained why the Swede’s shot only found the side netting.

Next it was time for Bentley to try his luck. Cutting inside from the left hand touchline, he beat three defenders and unleashed his shot, but dragged it just wide of the near post.

Despite their best efforts, City failed to capitalise on their domination and the Baggies came very close to stealing the lead just before half-time. It was the only save Greeno had to make in the first half, and it came from Gary Holt! Bernt Haas got down the right wing and fired across the six yard box. Attempting to clear, Holt only managed to guide the ball towards the goal, forcing Greeno to dive at full stretch low to his right.

West Brom lifted their game for the second half, but it was City who came closest to opening the scoring in the early stages. Bentley crossed to the far post where Jonson met the ball with a firm downward header, but Hoult managed to block the ball on the line and just as Jonson went for the rebound, the keeper managed to scramble the ball clear. Jonson got a kick in the head from a defender for his troubles, but was able to carry on after treatment.

Inside the hour, Megson swapped Kanu for sub Earnshaw, and he had an immediate impact. Using his pace, he ran at the City defence, which stood firm. But the ball fell to Greening, and his shot forced Greeno to make his second save of the game; the City shot-stopper then had to be alert to clear the danger as Horsfield looked to take advantage from the rebound.

McKenzie tried to break free down the right, but appeared to be blocked off by the defender. With no whistle, McKenzie’s frustration got the better of him and he pulled the defender to the ground, earning a yellow card in the process.

With 20 minutes to go, Jason Koumas replaced Greening, who was possibly the Baggies most influential attacking player, but the change worked and West Brom started to have more of

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