West Brom supporters have been making a lot of noise in recent times after seeing their team make it back-to-back Championship victories over the weekend.
Darren Moore’s men went into their encounter with lowly Millwall off the back of beating Bristol City 4-2 at the Hawthorns in midweek, and thus seeking to secure back-to-back wins for the second time this term. And they did just that in the Midlands on Saturday as goals from Dwight Gayle and Kieran Gibbs sealed a routine 2-0 success for the Baggies, a result which has moved them up to third place in the Championship table, just a point behind leaders Leeds United.
Thus, there have been many delighted West Brom fans up and down the country in recent times, several of whom have unsurprisingly been heaping praise on messrs Gayle and Gibbs for coming up with the vital contributions at the Hawthorns at the weekend.
Striker Gayle, on loan from Premier League outfit Newcastle United, has made an excellent start to life at West Brom in bagging five goals and laying on five assists in just eight league appearances so far, and while Gibbs was part of the team relegated from the top-flight last term, the 28-year-old was a rare bright spark last season, and has proven his worth so far this time round as well.
And while the duo certainly deserve credit for their exploits on Saturday, defender Craig Dawson, who of course wanted out of the club during the summer, was arguably their unsung hero at the Hawthorns at the weekend.
Like Gibbs, the 28-year-old was reasonably consistent for the Baggies in their disastrous Premier League campaign last season, to the point that he reportedly handed in a transfer request in a bid to remain in the top-flight, with Burnley one side keen on the versatile defender.
But no move materialised for the Englishman to thus leave him at West Brom until at least January, yet he produced a committed display on Saturday to suggest that the past is behind him, and that he is ready to give his all for the Midlands club.
The defender touched the ball more times than any other player that took to the field on Saturday (84) and finished the game with an 85% pass success rate, completing 61 of the 72 passes he attempted – both figures topping the respective charts.
Thus, it’s clear that Dawson was effective with the ball at his feet in trying to get West Brom forward and into attacking situations, yet he also produced the goods defensively as well in winning five aerial duels, as well as winning all three of the tackles he attempted.
Add in three clearances, one of which off the line, as well as making two interceptions, and the 28-year-old was a huge asset to the Baggies backline in helping them keep their first clean sheet of the Championship season – it was an excellent display by the Englishman.
And with Moore’s side now up to third and only a point behind leaders Leeds, the likes of Gayle and Gibbs will undoubtedly play a key part in helping the Baggies mount a promotion push this term, but so will 28-year-old Dawson, who was their unsung hero against Millwall on Saturday.
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