Foster's saves send Albion through to fifth round
ALBION'S FA Cup journey continued in dramatic fashion as they clinched a fifth round place via a penalty shoot-out at Peterborough United.
The League One outfit, having twice come from behind in the first match at The Hawthorns to earn this second crack at the Baggies, pushed their Premier League opposition to the limit in a see-saw contest.
But Ben Foster pulled off two saves – and clinched a Man of the Match rating in the process – in the shoot out to give Albion a 4-3 victory on penalties after extra-time had failed to separate the teams at 1-1.
Peterborough will be given plenty of plaudits for this effort after giving an Albion side, already hit by injuries and having to adjust for the loss of Gareth McAuley, a torrid opening half hour.
The Baggies survived plenty of scrapes and began making chances of their own by the break before their grip was rocked by an opening strike from Jon Taylor on 55 minutes.
Albion, searching for confidence and form, were rescued by a stunning equaliser by skipper Darren Fletcher 22 minutes later and although Albion finished in control they could not avoid extra time.
The Baggies then squandered a host of opportunities to put themselves through the agonies of the shoot-out.
But Foster, who has returned from his lengthy injury lay off to provide such a reassuring figure behind the defence, was the match-winner saving the spot kicks off Martin Samuelson and Leonardo Da Silva Lopes.
Sebastien Pocognoli, Saido Berahino, Craig Gardner and James Chester – who had his best game in an Albion shirt to date – put their’s away with aplomb with only an exhausted Fletcher dragging his penalty wide.
Samuelson miss: 3-2 (Foster save)
Fletcher miss: 3-2 (Shot wide)
Angol miss: 4-3 (Foster save)
PETERBOROUGH: Alnwick; Baldwin, Bostwick, Zakuani, Fox, Beautyman (Maddison 98), Forrester, Taylor (Oztumer 115), Samuelsen, Coulthirst (Coulibaly 89), Angol.
Unused subs: Henry, Ntlhe, Oztumer, Maddison, Lopes, Toffolo
Bookings: Forrester (foul 118); Fox (foul 129)
ALBION: Foster; McAuley (Pocognoli 19), Olsson, Chester; Gamboa, Fletcher, Yacob (Sessegnon 63), Gardner, McClean; Berahino, Rondon.
Unused subs: Myhill, Anichebe, Ward, Roberts, Leko.
Bookings: Yacob (47, foul);
Referee: M. Jones (Cheshire)
Albion Man of the Match: Ben Foster