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Premier League

Robinson rescues point for Baggies as they begin life back in the Championship with comeback

CALLUM ROBINSON’S 67th-minute goal earned West Brom a point as they twice came from behind in a breathless Championship opener at the Vitality.

The Baggies ace crashed home a half volley to add to Dara O’Shea’s first leveller after 33 minutes.

Robinson scored the equaliser for West Brom midway through the second half


Robinson scored the equaliser for West Brom midway through the second halfCredit: Getty
Billing gave Bournemouth the lead seven minutes after the break


Billing gave Bournemouth the lead seven minutes after the breakCredit: Getty

Bournemouth had led twice through Emiliano Marcondes’ 12th-minute opener and Philip Billing’s 52nd-minute effort.

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This was a clash between two clubs with new managers, with Scott Parker taking charge of Bournemouth after leaving Fulham and Valerien Ismael bossing West Brom after quitting Barnsley.

Baggies and England keeper Sam Johnstone was surprisingly left on the bench, raising questions whether the club had received any bids. But West Brom insiders last night denied that was the case.

The game started in typical feisty fashion with Bournemouth ace Philip Billing clattering into Kyle Burley as the West Brom defender tried to clear.

Burley looked furious as his Bournemouth opponent offered to help him back to his feet.

The Cherries raced into an 11th-minute lead with some fine football that will have pleased Parker.

Jaidon Anthony played a lovely ball into the box. Dominic Solanke got in the way of Dara O’Shea as he attempted to clear. And the ball found its way to Emiliano Marcondes to stroke the ball home.

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Marcondes started the season as he finished the last one. He scored for Brentford in the play-off final at Wembley against Swansea to help them clinch promotion to the Premier League.


Billing celebrated passionately with the Bournemouth fans as the Championship returned


Billing celebrated passionately with the Bournemouth fans as the Championship returnedCredit: Getty

But the Spaniard was unable to agree a new deal over the summer.

Bartley was lucky not to be booked after catching Marcones with an elbow but ref Dean Whitestone did feel compelled to get both him and West Brom captain Jake Livermore together to tell them to calm things down.

West Brom almost levelled when Conor Townsend volleyed goalwards after head tennis in the Cherries box. Cedric Kipre stuck out a leg but could only divert it high and wide.

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Cherries defender Chris Mepham was booked after body checking Karlan Grant.

Bournemouth left-back Jordan Zemura got a ticking off from the referee after a late lunge on Grady Diangana.

And West Brom drew level in the 33rd minute through a set-piece.

Townsend launched a long throw into the box which was headed back out by Billing.

But the ball fell back to the wing-back, who curled in a cross for unmarked O’Shea to head powerfully home from six yards. It was awful defending from the Cherries.

Cherries keeper Mark Travers was then forced into a good save – getting down to his right to push behind a Callum Robinson effort.

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Bournemouth almost gifted West Brom a second after the break when Lloyd Kelly gave the ball away.

Diangana was on to it in a flash and passed the ball forward to Robinson but his angled effort was blocked by Mepham.

But the hosts regained the lead seven minutes into the second half.

Anthony and Jordan Zemura combine on the left with the former’s cross cut out by keeper David Button but he can only palm the ball straight to Billing.

Parker was wiped out following a challenge on the touchline


Parker was wiped out following a challenge on the touchlineCredit: Getty
The Bournemouth boss was left on his backside and then saw his side relinquish the lead twice


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The Bournemouth boss was left on his backside and then saw his side relinquish the lead twiceCredit: Getty

And the Cherries midfielder powered the ball into the bottom right corner.

In what was turning out to be an entertaining end-to-end game, West Brom almost snatched their second leveller.

With the ball pinging around the Bournemouth box, it finally fell for Robinson, whose volley whistles wide of a post.

Bartley finally had his name added to the referee’s notepad after hauling down Marcondes. The pair had a running battle all evening.

The Baggies were causing Bournemouth a lot of problems going forward.

And they deservedly drew level with 23 minutes left with a fine goal.

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Townsend won the ball back from a Bournemouth throw-in and Alex Mowatt immediately plays the ball forward.

Matt Phillips played in Townsend, who has continued his run into the box.

The ball is squared to Robinson, who crashes home a superb half volley.

The Baggies almost moved in front when Robinson played a peach of a ball through the middle of the Cherries defence – but Grant was just unable to get the vital touch with only the keeper to beat.

But in a breathless game, Bournemouth were denied going straight back in front by a super piece of goalkeeping from Button.

Billing’s left-flank cross is met by a first-time David Brooks effort at the back post. But somehow Button was able to change direction quickly to push the ball away.

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Grant then fired an angled effort just wide for the Baggies before down the other end Button makes a good save to deny Solankie.

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