PL Cup Report | Albion 2-0 Blackburn Rovers

Cole Deeming.

Albion's youngsters put in an accomplished display at Keys Park to claim a 2-0 victory over Blackburn Rovers in the PL Cup on Monday evening.

Second half goals from Cole Deeming and Reece Hall ensured Richard Beale's side a commanding position in the standings heading into the final raft of fixtures in the group stages.

Layton Love produced the first big opportunity of the game within the opening ten minutes, jinking past his man on the edge of the 18-yard box before firing a powerful effort just over the crossbar.

At the other end, Dominik Beniek saw a deflected strike clip the side netting, whilst Ben Cisse was on hand to save smartly from a Charlie Weston effort shortly after.

Albion should have taken the lead in the 23rd minute after Ollie Bostock was played in on goal, but his low strike was well saved by the Rovers shot-stopper to keep the game at 0-0.

The visitors saw Weston find the side netting once more before Albion created another brilliant opportunity to break the deadlock, but Fenton Heard struck the bar after deceiving the Blackburn defence in the area.

Albion were growing in confidence heading into the final five minutes of the first half, but they couldn't find their way past a stubborn back line ahead of the break.

Ben Cisse in action.

Both sides saw speculative penalty shouts waved away with the second half in its infancy, as each looked to open the scoring on the counter.

But it was Albion who would break the deadlock in the 54th minute through Deeming, finding space on the edge of the box before planting his low finish into the bottom corner.

Kevin Mfuamba almost doubled the Baggies' advantage in spectacular style, curling a gorgeous effort toward the top corner, only for Nicholas Michalski to deny him with an outstanding full-stretch save.

Michalski was on hand twice more shortly after, as Deeming and Love forced him into two sprawling saves as the hosts tried to secure the cushion of a second goal.

Deago Nelson was next to threaten, but after breaking the lines in midfield he couldn't test the goalkeeper with his finish, which flew over the bar.

The Baggies' pressure finally told again in the 72nd minute, this time through a set piece. A corner from the right was nodded down in the box, and it was the skipper Hall who forced home at the near post to hand his side a deserved two-goal lead.

Blackburn looked for an instant response, but Cisse rushed out to deny the visitors after a neat move in the area.

Rovers continued to hunt for a way back into the encounter, but the Baggies saw out the final minutes with little fanfare to secure the three points.

The victory lifts Albion atop Group B, needing only a point against fourth-placed Reading in their final group game to secure passage into the knockout stages of the competition.

ALBION: Cisse, Williams, Hall, Kelly (45 Harper-Bailey), Shaw (45 Kirton), Deeming, Mfuamba (70 Mandey), Heard (45 Whitwell), Nelson, Love, Bostock (70 Sule).

  • PL Cup