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Terry’s Baggies Blog

WE’RE BACK AGAIN

14-04-2010

The waiting is over. Albion have been promoted back to the Premier League, and Terry Wills is supplying the commentary.

Came the day, the match, and before, during and after the game, ONE chant summed up the feelings of the passionate Baggies fans at Doncaster. It went along the lines of “We ARE going up, we’re going up, West Brom’s going up…..!”

Yes the Agony and the Ecstasy scenario was finally over. The weeks of self doubt- wondering if Albion could somehow, impossibly, throw away an automatic promotion spot back into the Greed League had disappeared.

Without doubt the new ground, bearing the quaint title of the Keepmoat Stadium will now, and forever, hold memories of a lovely warm sunny day, thousands of replica shirts, ecstatic scenes, and the expected (!) bi-annual celebration as Roberto Di Matteo’s first season as Head Coach was climaxed with promotion and still three games to play. Not bad Roberto, not bad at all!

Not that it was a comfortable victory- heck it wouldn’t be Albion if we’d seen the perfect performance. Goals screaming into the back of the Doncaster net, coupled with an immaculate defensive display that left Scott Carson wishing he’d been provided with a deck chair to allow him an opportunity of sitting back, relaxing, knowing he was going to enjoy a day off.

On the contrary it was the Rovers who had looked the more impressive side early on. They moved the ball around with ease and accuracy and I know I wasn’t alone in thinking that if they’d had their shooting boots on, and Captain Carson hadn’t pulled off a couple of excellent saves, we could have found ourselves in arrears in the first 15/20 minutes.

But that didn’t happen, and as the half progressed it was Albion who began to look the more likely scorers. Proved, when following deliberations between Graham Dorrans and Chris Brunt as to who was best suited to take a free-kick, it was the supporters that saw the automatic promotion door opening up that little bit wider, when our player of the season (in my opinion) Dorrans almost casually bent the ball in to the net off the far post before nonchalantly turning away to receive congratulations akin to being acknowleged as if it had the most natural thing in the world.

The last minute of the half and the door was opened ever wider, Chris Brunt nudging the ball home at the second attempt. That was it, wasn’t it? Surely there was no way Doncaster would storm back, and as the song goes, Rain on our Parade?
2-0. Why did we ever doubt? Let the celebrations began.

Slight hitch when in the 47th minute a sleep-walking defence allowed Emmanuel Thomas to pull a goal back. Did it matter? Not according to Baggies fans who continued the ongoing, never ending chant “We’re going up” — keep repeating!

For me we definitely needed to restore a two goal advantage to be sure of guaranteeing we’d be celebrating the three points that WOULD send us home in VERY high spirits.

And then it happened; the claim made by Roman Bednar in the previous week, that he’d score the goal that takes us into the Premier League. A cross from Chris Brunt and there he was, kissing the badge on his shirt accompanied by look of sheer delight that amazingly was equal if not greater than any seen on any individual face’s among the 3, 312 Baggies fans.

That did turn out to be the winner but even then a late goal from James Hayter, plus a few scary moments in and around Albion’s penalty area as the clock ticked away the added on four minutes, DID have supporters screaming for the referee to blow his whistle.

The players too mob each other, all rounded off as some supporters raced on to the pitch to celebrate another promotion – the fourth in nine years.

It hadn’t been a great display but again that didn’t matter. It was the three points and the implications as too what lay ahead next season that occupied the minds of everyone who supports the Baggies.

Everyone from the chairman down knows only too well that the squad needs strengthening but that can be looked at in greater details as the season draws to an end. In the meantime here’s hoping that we WILL be granted the opportunity to enjoy an open-top bus parade to celebrate another promotion.

Last time we finished as champions Tony Mowbray denied us the opportunity to acknowledge the feat, but then we normally do get the chance when we finish as runners-up. For now let’s finish with by congratulating Roberto and his players on giving us a successful season which should be rounded off with a certain amount of supporter satisfaction starting against Middlesbrough on Saturday.

Well done AND “Come on you Baggies”

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