West Brom boss Slaven Bilic insists the Baggies are close to clicking after they were held at home by Reading.

Kenneth Zohore’s late penalty, after Ovie Ejaria clipped Filip Krovinovic, salvaged a 1-1 draw at The Hawthorns.

Liverpool loanee Ejaria’s superb 71st-minute opener looked to have given the Royals all three points.

Albion are yet to win at home this term but sit sixth in the early Sky Bet Championship table and Bilic believes they are close to a breakthrough.

He said: “We deserved to equalise and we just simply ran out of time. We deserved much more based on this performance.

“We are going to have ups and downs but am I happy with the way we are playing? Yes. I am not happy with the results because we should have more points than eight.

“Goals will come if we continue like this. When we are in this form we have to use that, the momentum.

I said to the boys ‘be proud’, it was one point gained considering what the result was a few minutes before.

Slaven Bilic’s 2-word message to his West Brom players

“Since the start of the campaign we are playing well and this was our best game so far. I know it’s a results business but it’s also about the way we create and the quality of players on the pitch.

“I didn’t see they were hurting us that much. I said to the boys ‘be proud’, it was one point gained considering what the result was a few minutes before.”

Darnell Furlong and Krovinovic wanted penalties and Rafael Cabral denied Charlie Austin before Albion fell behind with 19 minutes left.

Ejaria found the top corner from the edge of the box for his first goal of the season.

Zohore was denied by an excellent block by Liam Moore as Albion tried to hit back before he netted from the spot with two minutes left.

Reading failed to earn successive wins after their 3-0 victory over Cardiff and Jose Gomes questioned the award of Albion’s penalty.

He said: “He (Ejaria) touched the ball, after he touched it there was contact. I don’t want to talk abut refereeing decisions, it happens in football. Ovie had a great game.

“When you have the three points in your pocket until the last minute you feel very disappointed. It’s a very good sign, leaving this stadium against one of the strongest teams, having this feeling.

“They couldn’t find the way to our goal because we defended very well. My players were brave in their defensive organisation.”

Turn of events at The Hawthorns yesterday

Zohore scored his first Albion goal from the spot to earn a late point

Kenneth Zohore’s late penalty rescued a point for West Brom after Reading’s Ovie Ejaria went from hero to zero.

Liverpool loanee’s Ejaria’s stunner looked to have given the Royals victory only for him to concede a late penalty to allow Zohore to earn a 1-1 draw.

Zohore stepped off the bench to score his first Baggies goal but Albion boss Slaven Bilic is still looking for his first win at The Hawthorns since his summer appointment.

Charlie Austin was thwarted by Royals goalkeeper Rafael Cabral and Grady Diangana fired over but Albion’s home frustrations continued.

The Baggies, who now sit sixth in the Sky Bet Championship, were looking to resolve their home issue after failure to beat Millwall in the league and cup.

Darnell Furlong wanted an early penalty after he appeared to be clipped by Omar Richards but his appeals were waved away.

But despite their bright start Baggies goalkeeper Sam Johnstone made the first save when he beat away John Swift’s 10th minute free kick.

Reading wrestled a degree of control back after the hosts threatened to overwhelm them as the game evened out.

Matt Phillips drilled well wide after 23 minutes and Ejaria’s tame effort was gathered by Johnstone.

Midfielder Ejaria was impressing and he forced Johnstone into a smart stop with an angled effort from close range.

Albion continued to get joy down Reading’s right but the final ball eluded the otherwise lively Phillips.

The visitors remained more assured in possession and began the second half on the front foot without testing Johnstone.

George Puscas, who scored twice in the 3-0 win over Cardiff on Saturday, sliced well wide but it was the closest the Royals came early on.

They were indebted to Cabral after 55 minutes when his fine stop kept the scores level.

Furlong wriggled free on the right and his low cross found Austin but Cabral stuck out a leg to save his close-range effort.

Albion had begun to ramp up the pressure and wanted a penalty when Filip Krovinovic went down under Andy Yiadom’s challenge only for referee Peter Bankes to ignore their pleas.

Diangana then drove over and Reading responded by taking the lead with 19 minutes remaining.

Ejaria had been the visitors’ best player and he deservedly grabbed a goal when he was given too much time on the edge of the area to drill into the top corner.

Albion tried to fight back and Zohore’s shot was brilliantly blocked by Liam Moore before the substitute fired at Cabral.

But the striker was not going to be denied a leveller from the penalty spot with two minutes left after Ejaria’s rash tackle on Krovinovic.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sign Up for Our Newsletters

Get notified of the best News.

You May Also Like

Do Football Betting Strategies Actually Work?

Betting on football is a lot like supporting your favourite team week…