Baggies beaten in South Wales
- Baggies sunk by early Ki goal
- On top – but no breakthrough
- Albion star man: Jonny Evans
- Attendance: 20,789
Albion’s festive programme began with an afternoon of huge frustration as they slipped to defeat at the Liberty Stadium.
The Baggies controlled significant chunks of the Boxing Day clash against Swansea City but could find no response to an early goal from Ki Sung-Yueng.
He took advantage of a moment of misfortune for Boaz Myhill in the ninth minute as a shot from Angel Rangel rebounded off the foot of a post and eluded his grasp. Ki, following up, prodded the ball home.
But Albion settled down to have more than enough of this contest to fashion a goal or two only to find that finishing touch elusive.
Two chances in the space of three minutes which saw Lukasz Fabianski deny first James Morrison and then Rickie Lambert, who took over at the head of attack for the suspended Salomon Rondon, would be the Swansea keeper’s only real saves.
But the Baggies will be annoyed they did not test him more frequently after pushing the home side back throughout the second half.
A double substitution just before the hour brought Stephane Sessegnon and Saido Berahino into the game but they too were unable to break down a determined Swansea defence.
SWANSEA: Fabianski, Rangel, Fernandez, Williams (C), Taylor, Britton (Shelvey 90), Ki, Sigurdsson, Routledge (Barrow 90), Montero, Ayew.
Subs: Nordfeldt, Gomis, Cork, Naughton, Bartley.
Bookings: Rangel (unsporting conduct 86);
ALBION: Myhill; Dawson, McAuley, Olsson (Berahino 59), Evans, Brunt; Fletcher, Yacob (McManaman 80), Gardner (Sessegnon 59); Morrison; Lambert.
Subs: Lindegaard, Chester, Anichebe, Gamboa.
Bookings: Olsson (foul 41); Yacob (foul, 64); McManaman (unsporting conduct 86);
Referee: Roger East (Wiltshire)