Tuesday 23 October 2018

Pardew remains optimistic despite stalemate

West Brom 0 Everton 0

West Bromwich Albion manager Alan Pardew consoles Salomon Rondon as he is substituted after sustaining an injury. Photo: REUTERS/Peter Powell
West Bromwich Albion manager Alan Pardew consoles Salomon Rondon as he is substituted after sustaining an injury. Photo: REUTERS/Peter Powell

Independent.ie Sportsdesk

It was only four weeks ago when Alan Pardew was defending his reputation as a boom-and-bust manager.

The implication was that Pardew always starts his tenures brilliantly and ends them badly, but West Bromwich Albion are still desperately waiting for lift-off at the Hawthorns. This dour stalemate extended West Brom's run without a win to 18 Premier League games and, though this was an improved performance, Pardew has some serious work left to do.

He had branded this "a key game" yet Albion's failure to beat an unadventurous, jaded Everton team, or even test goalkeeper Jordan Pickford, leaves them deep in trouble. This display had the unmistakable whiff of a relegation team, down on their luck and unable to convert dominance into victories.

"We are hungry for three points but frustrated at the same time," said Pardew. "Nine times out of 10 you win that game, we just couldn't find that moment.

"It's a shame we couldn't get the win, it would have been significant with the other teams drawing. That's what this league is about, you keep hanging in there until they come. If we play like this, we'll be OK."

West Brom have only scored two goals in six games since his arrival and his fears over their profligacy was perfectly captured in the sixth minute, after an inexplicable miss from Salomon Rondon.

Everton's Jordan Pickford is tested early on. Photo: REUTERS
Everton's Jordan Pickford is tested early on. Photo: REUTERS

Jay Rodriguez's cross from the left presented the unmarked Venezuelan with a simple chance six yards out but he got his feet in a tangle and flicked the ball wide. It felt like a pivotal moment.

West Bromwich Albion's Jay Rodriguez and Everton's Ashley Williams battle in the air. Photo: REUTERS
West Bromwich Albion's Jay Rodriguez and Everton's Ashley Williams battle in the air. Photo: REUTERS
Everton's Dominic Calvert-Lewin misses a chance at the back post. Photo: REUTERS
Everton's Dominic Calvert-Lewin misses a chance at the back post. Photo: REUTERS
West Bromwich Albion's Craig Dawson heads the ball just over the bar at The Hawthorns. Photo: PA
West Bromwich Albion's Craig Dawson heads the ball just over the bar at The Hawthorns. Photo: PA

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