LONDON – Relegation-threatened West Bromwich Albion gave their Premier League survival hopes a huge boost with a stunning 5-2 victory over 10-man Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Saturday (April 3).
Chelsea, fourth in the table, took the lead just before the half-hour mark when Marcos Alonso’s free kick came off the post and Christian Pulisic scored from the rebound, the American winger’s first goal under manager Thomas Tuchel.
Two minutes later Chelsea defender Thiago Silva was sent off after receiving a second yellow card for a reckless challenge.
“There’s no need to concede five goals when you have our quality,” Tuchel told BBC Sport after Chelsea’s worst home defeat in nearly 10 years.
“We could not adapt to the situation, which is a surprise as we were leading. We’re normally confident enough to defend but we were sloppy and kept making big mistakes. We were punished hard and it’s tough to digest.”
West Brom used their numerical advantage to good effect as Matheus Pereira scored two goals in quick succession in first-half stoppage time to put the visitors ahead at the interval.
They added two goals on the counter-attack five minutes apart in the second half, with Callum Robinson volleying home a Darnell Furlong cross before Pereira turned provider for Mbaye Diagne.
Chelsea pulled one back to make it 4-2 when Timo Werner set up substitute Mason Mount for a simple tap-in but West Brom scored their fifth in stoppage time when Robinson found space and chipped onrushing keeper Edouard Mendy.
West Brom remained second-bottom of the table, seven points from the safety zone.
People will always look to the fact they went down to 10 men but I thought we started the game brightly and created chances. I thought Thiago Silva was lucky to stay on after the first foul,” West Brom manager Sam Allardyce said.
“Our goals were all quality goals, not just the finishing but the build-ups. It’s just a bit of a shame we didn’t show that quality in some others games but this still gives us a bit of hope.”