In what was a tragic nightmare game for West Brom today after they were leading Aston Villa at Villa Park in the first leg of the Championship playoffs 2-1 after 74 minutes.
That was before two goals in the last 15 minutes gave the home side a crucial victory.
Dwight Gayle had been true to form when he scored after only 16 minutes with a well-hit low shot with his left foot.
It looked as though the Baggies would get a vital away win, but then Hourihane scored after 75 minutes and then Tammy Abraham – on loan from Chelsea – scored a second four minutes later from the penalty spot.
We heard the news yesterday that Rafa Benitez wants to buy Abraham outright this summer if Chelsea sells.
Dwight Gayle – scores beautiful goal to put West Brom 1-0 up after 16 minutes
But tragedy was to hit Baggies in final 15 minutes
To make things worse with two minutes to play, Dwight Gayle was sent off when he picked up his second yellow card and therefore misses the second leg on Thursday.
A draw will take Aston Villa to the playoff final.
And without Gayle, the Baggies will be a weakened side on Thursday night at The Hawthorns.
You can’t make this stuff up!
We feel really sorry for the Baggies fans – but that’s football for you – there will be some tears in their beers tonight – for sure.
If West Brom are not promoted then the transfer fee for Salmon Rondon is said to £16.5M and not the £20M the Baggies will ask – if they are promoted.
So if West Brom are not promoted it increases the chances of Rafa being able to get Rondon in permanently.
Aston Villa were beaten 1-0 last May by Fulham at Wembley in the playoff final: Fulham have since been relegated from the Premier League.
Sunderland will play Portsmouth in the first tie of their playoff later this afternoon at the Stadium of Light.
This may not be popular, but we really hope they can get promoted back to the Championship.
It’s better for Newcastle to have Sunderland in the Premier League – for one thing, it’s 6 easy points for us each season.