West Bromwich Albion Boss Defends Costly Decision

West Bromwich Albion manager Carlos Corberan has defended his decision to push for a late winner in their Championship clash with Leicester City, which ultimately cost them a point.

The league leaders took the lead with 18 minutes remaining when Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall headed home, but the Baggies hit back in the 89th minute when Josh Maja struck following a goalmouth scramble. A share of the spoils looked to be on the cards, but the home side won a throw in deep in the Leicester half in added time which proved costly.

West Brom pushed forward in search of a winner, sending their centre backs up and leaving their back line exposed, a decision Leicester ultimately punished. Enzo Maresca’s side cleared the resulting throw in and Kelechi Iheanacho set Dewsbury-Hall off on the counter with no defenders in sight.

The midfielder looked favourite to net his second of the game but unselfishly squared the ball to Harry Winks, who slotted home to hand the Foxes all three points.

Despite the last-ditch defeat, Corberan remained steadfast in his view that it was the right decision to push for the winner. Speaking after the game, via Birmingham Live, the 40-year-old said;

“What we did in this situation was to attack how we always attack it. Sometimes to change something is negative. If I told my centre backs not to go up, having scored a goal two minutes ago, at home, it would’ve been for me…I’d have regretted this. It’s true that there are many small aspects to correct – not just because we lost, but to not suffer transitions against opponents.

“The next time we have a throw in, we must be prepared to not only try and score, but to try and score without the risk of suffering the transition. In the minute 93 of the game, sometimes you make mistakes because of the emotion. Not even the emotion to attack, but the emotion to recover the ball, to help your team and to try and make a foul, to keep running. We are humans, this is why football is magic. These things happen.”

It’s a result which has gone unpunished though, with both Hull City and Blackburn Rovers below them also tasting defeat this afternoon, but fourth-placed Southampton’s 2-0 win over Cardiff City now means they extend the gap over West Brom in fifth to five points. A tough trip to the North East follows when they travel to the Stadium of Light to face an out-of-form Sunderland next Saturday.

Leicester remain top of the league, although Ipswich Town’s 2-1 win over Coventry City keeps the Tractor Boys within a point of the pacesetters.

Writer’s View

They say hindsight is a wonderful thing, and that is definitely the case here. A draw against Leicester would have been classed as a good result, but the hard work they put in to draw level late on has ultimately proved to be in vain. However, had West Brom scored a dramatic late winner, Corberan would’ve been hailed a genius for not resting on his laurels.

Football is about moments, and this is one of them which could define a season. The manager will be hoping it is one of those that doesn’t come back to haunt him come May.

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