West Brom 2 – Brighton 0
It was generally an excellent weekend for West Brom.
New manager Alan Pardew finally tasted Premier League success on Saturday against Brighton. West Brom had gone 20 matches without a win.
In a huge match at the Hatwhorns for the Baggies, a 2-0 win boosted belief West Brom can beat the drop.
A bullet header from Jonny Evans fired West Brom into an early lead to settle nerves. Will that be his final goal before leaving the club in January?
Craig Dawson doubled the advantage from another set play ten minutes in to the second half.
Despite the three points, West Brom remain second from bottom. However they are now just two points from safety.
Brighton dropped to 15th. The Seagulls are just three points off the drop zone.
Jay Rodriguez & Gaitan Bong
Aside from West Brom winning, the big story after the game is what happened between Jay Rodriguez and Gaitan Bong.
The two players clashed during the second half. After pressing heads together, Rodriguez made a gesture in Bong’s direction.
That instantly upset the Brighton full-back, who made his feelings known to referee Martin Atkinson.
Bong seemed to mouth the word ‘racist’ during his conversation with the referee.
That’s obviously an incredibly serious accusation, which has since been sent to the FA for further review.
The FA can confirm that referee Martin Atkinson was made aware of an allegation during the West Bromwich Albion versus Brighton & Hove Albion game at The Hawthorns yesterday and has subsequently reported this to The FA, which will now begin making enquiries into the matter.
— FA Spokesperson (@FAspokesperson) January 14, 2018
‘I’m black and I stink’
On Sunday night, French broadcasters SFR Sport have interviewed Bong to find out exactly what happened.
Bong continues to assert he was racially abused, claiming Jay Rodriguez said: “You’re black and you stink”. Bong said:
He said certain things of a racist nature and I took it badly.
I couldn’t understand it. I went in front of the player and I think he was a bit irritated because I had blocked him off on the previous move.
He said certain things and I’m not going to repeat them on television because I think they are things you shouldn’t say. As you see, I signalled to the referee that he had said certain things.
At first the referee told me to get back in position. When he said that I said, ‘No.’ There are things that you can let pass, but I’m a man and a man of colour. We are in 2018 and there are things we don’t let pass anymore.
He said something in reference to my colour. You see very clearly he pinched his nose in relation to what he said. I asked him to repeat it.
I think at the moment he repeated it he realised what he had said. He wanted to limit the damage. I said no. It would be incomprehensible coming from a fan, but from a footballer who earns a very good living and is there to entertain it should be punished.
Watch the interview below.
📢 “Jay Rodriguez has made racist comments about me”
➡️ Brighton full-back Gaetan Bong reveals he’s been subjected to racism on the pitch during #WBABHA ! cc @MailOnline @SkySportsPL @rioferdy5 @GaryLineker @ed_aarons @guardian_sport @GNev2 @TheSunFootball @MirrorFootball pic.twitter.com/NIM6zFWAXF
— SFR Sport (@SFR_Sport) January 14, 2018