London - James Morrison has headed the only goal of the game to secure West
Bromwich Albion's first win of the season as they climbed off the bottom
of the Premier League table with a 1-0 win away to Tottenham Hotspur on
Scotland international Morrison's 74th-minute header at
White Hart Lane eased the pressure on Baggies manager Alan Irvine and
condemned Spurs to a second successive home defeat.
Yet while this
result will inject some much-needed confidence into Albion's campaign,
it underlined the task confronting Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino
as he attempts to turn Spurs into a top four side.
start to the campaign delivered four successive wins before stalling in
recent weeks with Pochettino's men suffering a comprehensive 3-0 home
defeat by Liverpool before claiming a point at Sunderland.
came into this clash on the back of a scoreless draw at Partizan
Belgrade in the Europa League and this result means they are now without
a win in four games.
By contrast, this result represented West Brom's first win in five league games.
pre-season appointment of Irvine provoked a muted response among Albion
supporters hoping to see a higher profile manager take charge and the
response to last week's home defeat by Everton confirmed the Scot had
plenty of work to do to win over the doubters.
But the manager's standing will soon rise if his side can conjure more displays like this one.
was finally able to draw on the services of Joleon Lescott who made his
first appearance after leaving champions Manchester City at the end of
And the centre-back almost made the perfect start to
his Albion career only for his goal-bound volley from a 10th-minute
corner to be blocked by team-mate Craig Dawson.
Craig Gardner's long-range shot drew an impressive save from Spurs
keeper Hugo Lloris as the visitors continued to look the more
threatening of the two sides.
Tottenham had no shortage of possession and took every opportunity to press forward.
they appeared to run out of ideas in the final third, eventually
provoking former Southampton boss Pochettino to scream "wake up" at his
players as half-time approached.
Adebayor was struggling to make an impression on the game although it
took a last-ditch tackle from Lescott to deny the striker 10 minutes
before the break.
More wasteful was Adebayor's failure to meet
Christian Eriksen's inswing cross from the left hand flank from just six
yards out when any kind of connection would almost certainly have
brought the opening goal.
Spurs continued to lack fluency after
the restart and France keeper Lloris was again called on to save his
side, this time from the excellent Saido Berahino's swerving shot.
Pochettino had seen enough, introducing Paulinho and Roberto Soldado in an attempt to spark his side into life.
soon forced Ben Foster into action, with the West Brom keeper reacting
well to gather the ball after his initial save had denied the Spaniard.
Albion's forward moves still carried more conviction, although it was
Tottenham's continuing frailties at the back that gifted the visitors
the decisive goal.
Once again it was a corner, swung in from the
right by Chris Brunt, that caused the problem with Erik Lamela allowing
Morrison a free header from six yards out.
Irvine's reaction spoke
volumes about the importance of the goal while Tottenham's limited
response as they went in search of an equaliser confirmed Pochettino's
side are very much a work in progress.