Albion 2 Leicester 1

There is a theme developing with these narrow Albion wins. A bit of a cliche, even.

Graham Potter’s men have been taking it to the limits to pick up points.

(And never have those limits been as pushed as much as in this tense finale against the Foxes.)

Then they are told they would have drawn or lost that game last season.

It happened at Burnley and at Brentford.

The same point was put to Potter after two disallowed goals and a few near misses saw his side hold on for the best of their four Prem wins out of five to date.

Actually, in a way they DID lose this game last season.

One-up at the break through Adam Lallana, they failed to add a second goal like that which was so expertly headed home by Danny Welbeck this time.

You might recall Lallana back then seeing a very similar glancing header to Welbeck's yesterday come back off the far post.

Unlocked by a brilliant Youri Tielemans pass, they then failed to hold on to what they had in last season's game and conceded a second goal very late.

“Another long week awaits,” was my rather grumpy tweet, typed out at the back of a deserted West Upper that evening.

Albion have only lost once in eight home games since them.

A week amid the upper reaches is in store this time after they held on before a vibrant, euphoric West Stand (not to mention North and East).

So, with absolutely no marks for originality, would they have lost this game last season?

Potter told The Argus: “It feels like that, I’ve got to say.

“Whether that would have been a last-minute equaliser or whatever.

“We had some big hard luck stories last year and everybody wants to know why you didn’t take the points and why you’re not winning.

“You can’t really say we have just been a bit unlucky.

“I think the points we have now, we have done quite well. In terms of points, really well.

“In terms of performance, I think we can still improve.

“We have not been the massively dominant teams in games.

“The margins have just gone our way and I think you need that in football.

“We are delighted with the start we have made but we have got another game on Wednesday and we play Crystal Palace on Monday so we are nor resting on anything.”

Ultimately the big talking points involved events at the south end of the stadium.

A penalty call from which Maupay put Albion head and two disallowed goals after Leicester had got back to 2-1.

The spot kick was puzzling in that, having spotted Shane Duffy’s header came off Jannik Vestergaard and awarded a corner, ref Stuart Attwell had not seen it hit his outstretched arm.

An unnatural position? No more or less unnatural than, for example, that in which Maupay had his arm when penalised right on full-time versus Manchester United last season.

The argument from Foxes boss Brendan Rodgers was that Vestergaard was being fouled.

Maupay, one of three Albion players who have had penalties saved by Kasper Schmeichel in recent years, this time sent the irate goalkeeper the wrong way.

Albion, having come out of their early shell, deserved the lead.

It got even better after the break when Solly March was fouled, Leandro Trossard delivered a pinpoint free-kick and Welbeck glanced his downward header wide of Schmeichel.

For a while, Albion buzzed forward in pursuit of a third goal.

Instead, Jamie Vardy’s close range finish to a stunning move halved arrears.

Leicester could not have gone closer to levelling.

Ademola Lookman and Wilfred Ndidi had close range goals ruled out at set-pieces because Harvey Barnes was offside and in the eyeline of Robert Sanchez.

At least one was very similar to an escape the Foxes themselves enjoyed in a narrow win at Norwich in recent weeks.

Albion made changes, rejigged and rode out the final moments, helped by plenty of noise.

Several thousand were imploring Jakub Moder to take the ball to the corner as he did exactly that in the final seconds.

That is another huge difference this season, of course.


The eery silence of a 2-1 defeat behind closed doors compared to the cacophony of a 2-1 win.

Many of the crowd endured nightmare journeys to get to the game and their role was appreciated.


Potter said: “It’s a great three points for us in front of our own supporters.

“I thought they were amazing today, our fans.

“Really got behind us and helped us when we needed them.”

Albion: Sanchez; Veltman, Duffy, Dunk, Cucurella; March (Mwepu 62),Lallana, Bissouma (Moder 79),; Trossard, Welbeck (Burn 70), Maupay. Subs Not Used: Lamptey, Connolly, Mac Allister, Alzate, Steele, Richards.

Booked: Veltman, Sanchez.

Goals: Maupay 35 pen,Welbeck 50.

Leicester: Schmeichel; Ricardo Pereira, Soyuncu, Vestergaard, Bertrand (Castagne 68); Tielemans, Ndidi, Soumare (Iheanacho 75), Maddison (Lookman 46); Vardy, Barnes. Subs Not Used: Albrighton,Ward,Amartey,Choudhury,Dewsbury-Hall, Daka.

Booked: Ndidi.

Goals: Vardy 61.

Ref: Stuart Attwell (Warwickshire).

VAR: Peter Bankes