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NICK SZCZEPANIK'S PRESS VERDICT: WEST BROMWICH ALBION

7 February 2019

Paul Hazlewood
The press verdict from Albion's replay victory over West Bromwich Albion.
So what part of his anatomy did Glenn Murray score his first goal with? Some papers said thigh, some said groin, but none was more specific than The Sun.
 
“GLENN MURRAY scored with his PENIS to help seal Brighton’s place in the fifth round,” wrote Graham Hill. “The veteran striker struck twice in extra-time to claim a tie with Derby.
 
“But it was his first - Brighton's second of the game - that sent fans into a frenzy.
 
“In the 104th minute, a cross deflected up into Murray's path and replays showed the last touch came off his privates.
 
“Football fans were loving it, with one Twitter account writing: ‘Well that woke me up from this dull game: Glenn Murray just scored with his penis’."
 
 
We got the message, thanks.
 
Jon Culley, writing in the Telegraph, thought that Murray’s goal had struck him elsewhere, in a similar spot to his winner at home to Crystal Palace in the third round last season.
 
“An extra-time substitution paid off for Brighton, who will face Derby County at home in the fifth round after leading scorer Glenn Murray came off the bench to bundle home a 104th-minute goal, a squared pass by Jurgen Locadia going in off the veteran striker’s thigh to finish off West Bromwich Albion, before adding another in the final minutes.
 
“West Brom, who had to play with 10 men for 22 of the extra 30 minutes after losing Hal Robson-Kanu to injury with all their substitutes used, were put in front by Kyle Bartley with 13 minutes remaining, when he somehow wrapped his foot round the far post when standing half off the pitch to hook the ball in from a Wes Hoolahan free-kick. Brighton's Florin Andone later cashed in on some untidy defending to force extra time.”
 
 
 
Laurie Whitwell of the Daily Mail drew back from mentioning Glenn’s privates to his paper’s easily-shocked readers, but seemed to share the Sun’s view.
 
“Glenn Murray came off the bench in extra-time to prod the ball over the line with his first touch and nudge Brighton into round five.
 
“It was a goal that went in via Murray's groin, the Brighton striker showing once again that knack for being in the right place as Jurgen Locadia's cross bounced his way off Ahmed Hegazi.
 
“Murray then added another four minutes from time, finishing well after being found by Davy Propper. West Brom were down to ten men at that stage, as Hal Robson-Kanu had gone off injured and Darren Moore had used all four substitutes.
 
“Florin Andone took advantage of sloppy West Brom defending with eight minutes left of normal time to drive a finish underneath Jonathan Bond.
 
“It was an entirely avoidable equaliser from a West Brom perspective, with Kyle Bartley's loose pass and Craig Dawson's slip proving costly.
 
“Bartley had only put his team in front three minutes earlier with one of the most bizarre goals this competition has seen.
 
“Leon Balogun stepped back from wrestling Bartley, as a high ball fell following Wes Hoolahan's free-kick, freeing the West Brom defender to hook it over the line from the other side of the post. Brighton had thought Bartley was offside but Dan Burn had played the ball.” 
 
 
Paul Doyle of the Guardian – probably correctly - described West Brom’s opener as ‘farcical’ and a ‘fiasco.’
 
“West Brom were almost undone when the 6ft7in Dan Burn ventured forward for a corner but the centre-back headed over from six yards. Soon Burn was involved in the fiasco that led to West Brom’s goal.
 
"Not that he was to blame: he did well to head Hoolahan’s free-kick from the left up into the air, but Bartley turned the ball into the net from one yard.
 
"But four minutes later Bartley goofed, miscontrolling to allow Andone to nick in and equalise.
 
“West Brom were unfortunate to be down to 10 men for most of extra time, as Robson-Kanu went off injured after they had made all their substitutions.
 
"But Brighton had been dominant even before that. Jurgen Locadia created the decisive goal with a jagged run down the left and a low cross that Hegazi should have intercepted. He did not, so Murray was free to divert it into the net from close range.
 
"Morgan Roberts might have forced the tie to a penalty shootout, but failed to connect properly with a free header from six yards in the 115th minute. Murray was far more emphatic two minutes later when sent clear by Davy Propper.” 
 
 
The Birmingham Mail admitted that “Glenn Murray showed Albion’s youngsters how to do it.
 
“Brighton’s quality gradually told with West Brom forced to defend for long periods.
 
“There was no fairytale and Andone outmuscled Dawson and slid the ball through Bond’s legs.
 
“Brighton thought they had won it through Jurgen Locadia a minute from time. The linesman’s flag came to the rescue.
 
“[West Bromwich] Albion were reduced to ten men in extra-time when Robson-Kanu could not continue after taking a heavy knock.
 
“And the inevitable happened as Murray converted Locadia’s low cross with almost his first touch.
 
“West Brom weren’t finished. Debutant Morgan Rogers had a chance to level deep in extra-time, but lost his bearings under a high ball.
 
“Murray needed no navigational assistance when Davy Propper played him in three minutes from the end.”
 
 
Simeon Gholam of Sky Sports gave man-of-the-match honours to Murray.
 
“It's not often that a player who is introduced with less than 20 minutes to go of extra-time will win Man of the Match, but you just couldn't deny Murray's match-winning quality,” he wrote.
 
“After more than 200 minutes of an even tie, he came off the bench to make the difference.”
 

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