Maybe it was a case of déjà vu at the Amex on Saturday after all.

Albion headed to the brink of safety with this impressive success over an outplayed Leeds side.

The fear for much of the second half was that previous scenarios, when chances were wasted and points squandered, would unfold again.

Déjà vu. That was the concern.

But it turned out to be a repeat of another tale we have seen before and, from an Albion viewpoint, enjoyed.

Albion v Newcastle. High stakes. A 1-0 lead which has just come under its biggest threat yet as Ryan Fraser hit the post.

But that spark of life from the visitors is snuffed out by magic from Danny Welbeck as he cuts inside and curls a beauty into the far corner.

Albion v Leeds. High stakes. A 1-0 lead which has just come under its biggest threat yet as Stuart Dallas flashed a volley narrowly over the bar.

But that spark of life from the visitors is snuffed out by magic from Danny Welbeck as he controls a dropping ball with a Cruyff-style turn before sending a shot unerringly across Illan Meslier.

Albion’s 19 single-goal leads this season have been turned into a two-goal advantage on just three occasions.

When it actually happens, the feeling of relief is considerable.

They can cast off any doubts now as to next season’s status – and might finish in a position more befitting of the football they have often played.

A busy summer awaits for everyone on and off the pitch.

In terms of the playing squad, there are young players out on loan, seniors who have fallen out of Graham Potter’s plans and the ongoing quest for more goals on an affordable budget.

Whether Welbeck is one of those options remains to be seen.

A cool finish at Aston Villa was initially something of a false dawn but he has come to the fore in impressive style, and not just with goals, in recent weeks.

So much so that a few other clubs may well be eyeing him, looking to benefit from the good work he and Albion have done for each other As it was suggested to Potter after this win, Welbeck has put himself in the shop window.

“That’s not a problem,” the Albion boss replied without hesitation.

“Danny Welbeck playing well and enjoying his football is not a problem for me at all.

“I want Danny Welbeck to enjoy his football, I want him to do well because it will help the team and it will help us.

“At the end you sit down and you try to work out what’s right for everybody.

“That will happen at the end of the season.”

Leeds have been welcome visitors to the Amex for several years now.

After initially picking up two draws at the new venue, including a dramatic injury-time Ross McCormack equaliser, they have lost their last five in Falmer, scoring no goals and conceding 11.

Some sturdy defensive work when the visitors enjoyed first-half possession was key to sentencing them to another blank.

Potter fielded five genuine defenders - five centre-backs in fact – in his XI and there were some important heads, legs and bodies put in the way of shots and crosses for a while.

But Dan Burn and Joel Veltman, employed as wing-backs, were also part of the attacking play.

And Albion certainly carried a threat.

Leandro Trossard twice shot too close to Meslier very early on and later sent a great chance to make it 2-0 just before the break.

That last opening was set up by Welbeck, as was the goal which broke the deadlock.

His endeavour forced the 14th-minute penalty, which was conceded in clumsy fashion by the falling Ezgjan Alisoksi.

Albion’s first spot kick since the debacle at the Hawthorns was taken by Pascal Gross and drilled with precision low past Meslier’s right hand.

If you are looking for key moments, that was as much one as the Welbeck finish.

“Penalties haven’t necessarily been a strong point of ours this season,” Potter admitted.

“But, at the same time, the boys practise.


“It’s a pressure situation. The goalkeeper can be the hero and he hasn’t got too much to lose and the guy taking it has.

“That’s where you need people with character. We’ve got those in the team.

“It’s just Pascal took the responsibility.

“He wants to take them and he brings a calmness.

“I’m never relaxed when I see a penalty but, when Pascal is over the ball, I know his quality, I know how he works.”


Potter won’t relax now either. Safety is not secured quite yet, although he surely knows it will be.

And when it is, there is always another season to work towards. Another test awaiting.

The hope for many will be that Welbeck is part of that.

Albion: Sanchez; Webster, Dunk, White; Veltman, Gross, Bissouma (Mac Allister 90+1), Burn; Trossard (Jahanbakhsh 80), Welbeck (Moder 89), Maupay. Subs: Steele, Alzate, Propper, Zeqiri, Izquierdo, Connolly.

Goals: Gross pen 14, Welbeck 80.

Yellow card: Gross (76) dissent.

Leeds: Meslier; Ayling, Llorente (Hernandez 79), Koch, Alioski (Poveda 46); Struijk; Dallas, Klich, Roberts, Harrison; Bamford (Rodrigo 59). Subs: Casilla, Berardi, Drameh, Shackleton, Jenkins, Huggins.

Yellow card: Ayling (88) foul.

Referee: Chris Kavanagh.