Hull 0-1 West Brom: Jake Livermore strike keeps Baggies top
Report and highlights from the Sky Bet Championship clash at the KCOM Stadium
Last Updated: 09/11/19 6:15pm
West Brom consolidated their position at the summit of the Championship table with a hard-fought 1-0 win over Hull at the KCOM Stadium.
The Baggies did not have it all their own way in East Yorkshire and Grant McCann's side were confident having won their last three outings, but it was an old face that came back to haunt the Tigers.
Jake Livermore, who spent three-and-a-half seasons as a Hull player before joining West Brom in 2017, scored the only goal in the 28th minute, firing home from distance.
The home side had their chances, with Kamil Grosicki spurning their most notable opportunity, but West Brom showed the grit of promotion contenders to ensure Livermore's strike was decisive.
Perhaps unsurprisingly it was Slaven Bilic's outfit who dominated the early encounters, but despite seeing most of the ball they failed to carve out any real chance of note inside Hull's penalty area.
That was until the 21st minute when Darnell Furlong was allowed space down the right-hand side to pick out Grady Diangana in the area with a teasing cross, only for the West Ham loanee to send his header over the bar.
Just two minutes later, though, Grosicki should have opened the scoring.
The Poland international's run into the area was picked out by Jackson Irvine but he lacked the conviction to make the most of the chance, putting his tame shot wide from 12 yards.
Matt Phillips stung the palms of City goalkeeper George Long with an effort from outside the area and from the resulting corner, West Brom took the lead.
A short corner found its way to Livermore, who was in acres of space on the edge of the area, and he punished his old side for their slack defending by lashing the ball home.
The Tigers rallied before half-time and did find the back of the net themselves as the in-form Jarrod Bowen poked home, only to see his celebrations halted by a raised flag.
Eric Lichaj made a clumsy run forward but after a clever one-two with Bowen, he squared the ball into the area where Kevin Stewart was arriving but he could not get the connection he craved.
The Baggies were not exactly in control in the second half but in the space of a minute they missed two great scoring opportunities.
First the lively Diangana dragged a shot wide of Long's goal after a neat piece of passing play on the edge of the area and moments later Matheus Pereira put a shot wide from a central position.
The Baggies, though, had done enough to maintain their two-point cushion at the top of the league.
What the managers said...
Hull's Grant McCann: "I think first half West Brom were much better than us. We didn't lay a glove on them, we probably gave them a little bit too much respect and they're a top team, they're top of the league for a reason.
"I was disappointed with the first-half performance but in the second half I thought we were the better team. In the whole game I thought we had the best chances and the most clear-cut chances in the game. On another day we'd have taken it. That bit is frustrating."
West Brom's Slaven Bilic: "Credit to both teams. The work-rate, it was a good game and it was a game which two teams came into with confidence, both teams have had a great run in the last few games.
"We expected that from them, they are very good at transitions, the way they had their chance with Grosicki, it's typical Hull. All in all it was a good performance for us, the only thing that was missing was the second goal, we created not too many clear cuts, apart from Grady's chance."