Albion 0 Everton 0

Albion failed to turn pressure into three points last night.

But amid the frustration of another opportunity missed at home they will know they are edging closer to safety.

Adam Webster and Dan Burn were back for Albion – but only on the bench.

Boss Graham Potter named an unchanged starting XI to face Everton.

Webster had recovered from an ankle injury and Burn from a hamstring issue.

The surprise on the Everton side was the absence of star centre-forward Dominic Calvert-Lewin.

The England frontman had travelled to Sussex but Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti revealed he had “a little problem on his adductor” and the decision was made to take no risks.

The Argus:

Play was preceded by a period of silence in memory of HRH Prince Phillip.

An immediate observation once action started was that Neal Maupay had taken a position down the middle, rather than away to the right as had been the case of late.

Everton keeper Robin Olsen was soon in the wars and needed treatment after colliding with Yerry Mina as Albion hung a corner into the six-yard box.

It was not a particularly fluent start by the hosts but there was some nice work by Maupay and Leandro Trossard before Jakub Moder dragged a shot wide from outside the box.

James Rodriguez fired a free-kick over the bar from five yards outside the box after Seamus Coleman shrugged Yves Bissouma off the ball and was then impeded by Moder.

Albion’s reply was some intricate work by Trossard and Adam Lallana which worked a lot of room for Welbeck beyond the far post.

The striker’s rather unorthodox scissors effort was pushed away by Olsen.

Moder was then wide of the near post on the left foot after Albion again attacked down their right.

The Argus:

Robert Sanchez had a minor alarm when a back pass skipped off the turf just in front of him.

The keeper’s subsequent heavy touch was almost seized upon by Richarlison but Sanchez reacted quickly enough to nick the ball away from him, taking a whack to the ankle in the process.

It was obvious Albion’s passing in their own half would have be very sure with Everton eager to pounce on anything loose.

Albion have improvised in wing-back areas and Everton sounded a warning when Coleman got in behind Moder but, when he crossed, Tom Davies did not get enough contact on his header.

The hosts replied with their nearest thing yet. Trossard’s lively work and deflected low cross led to Maupay’s shot flicking off Mina and narrowly wide of the far post.

Then Bissouma almost wrapped up goal of the season award with an overhead bicycle kick which landed on the roof of the net with Olsen nowhere near it.

Bissouma was later in the thick of it by tracking back to make a crucial tackle on Gylfi Sigurdsson on the edge of the box after Maupay’s loose pass sent Everton away on a counter.

That ensured parity remained until half-time, which was a fair reflection of an interesting rather than captivating half.

Both teams needed to be doing a bit more in attack in the second period.

Bissouma sent an effort wildly off target and Maupay again saw a shot deflect wide after more intricate approach work by the hosts.

Everton weathered some pressure and, when they looked to break away, Lewis Dunk picked up a yellow card for his foul on Richarlison.

Referee Darren England had a word with Bissouma but no more when he fouled Rodriguez on halfway.

Albion were having to work hard to find a way through.

When it looked like they had slid in Welbeck to the left of goal, Ben Godfrey got across very quickly to cut out the danger.

Everton lost Mina to what looked like injury, with Alex Iwobi the obvious man to go on from a youthful bench.

Mason Holgate dropped into the back three.

Coleman was the next to get back and nick the ball away from Welbeck when Lallana seemed to have teed him up.

Welbeck got his head to the resulting corner as it bounced around the box before Olsen grabbed it.

And then it was Holgate who touched the ball away from Welbeck, this time with his head at the far post, from a delicious cross by Moder.

The resulting corner was pulled back by Gross to the edge of the box and Moder flashed a first-time drive just over the bar with a clean connection.


As Albion kept pushing towards the North Stand, Trossard’s cutback from the byline seemed to have set up Lallana but Coleman made a great challenge to deflect his shot behind.

Bissouma worked a good chance for Maupay on 75 minutes but he fired wide, then Olsen tipped over a Dunk header.

Alex Iwobi almost won it late for Everton when he fired over.

This time Albion were spared that final insult.

Albion: Sanchez; White, Dunk, Veltman; Gross, Bissouma, Lallana, Moder (Burn 87); Trossard; Maupay (Jahanbakhsh 87), Welbeck. Subs: Steele, Webster, Propper, Mac Allister, Alzate, Izquierdo, Zeqiri.

Yellow card: Dunk (52) foul.

Everton: Olsen; Coleman, Holgate, Keane, Mina (Iwobi 58), Godfrey; Sigurdsson, Digne, James Rodriguez, Davies; (Broadhead 88) Richarlison. Subs: Virginia, Tyrer, Nkounkou, John, Price, Welch.

Yellow card: Keane (82) foul, Holgate (90+2) foul.

Referee: Darren England.