West Bromwich Albion grabbed their first away win of the season, triumphing 2-1 at the DW Stadium against Wigan Athletic despite a very strong second-half fightback from the Latics. The match began in end-to-end fashion, with the Baggies dominating possession but unable to break through thanks to a typically majestic performance from Wigan goalkeeper Ali Al-Habsi. At the other end of the pitch, the hosts were seeking to hit West Brom on the counterattack, with limited success.
Then, just after the half-hour mark, a breakthrough. Romelu Lukaku swung in a cross that somehow missed everyone in the six-yard box and went all the way to Chris Brunt on the left, but his delivery was far more successful, picking out James Morrison at Al-Habsi's far post. Once Morrison got his head to the ball, the goal was never in doubt.
The visitors extended their lead thanks to great work from right back Billy Jones, who, fed by a deft reverse pass from Lukaku, found himself with just Ben Watson to beat on the byline. The defnder skipped past his man as though he wasn't there, then, spotting Shane Long at the far post, fired a cross towards the Ireland international. It never got there, instead bouncing off Gary Caldwell and in for an own goal.
At 2-0 down, Wigan could have folded. Instead, they redoubled their efforts at Boaz Myhill's goal. And they were rewarded with a more or less immediate goal. Franco di Santo passed left to Jean Beausajour, who played in an exquisite cross between the West Brom defensive line and Myhill which found Arouna Kone lurking at the back post. Faced with an open goal one yard out, it was simplicity itself for the former Sevilla man to halve the deficit.
The first half saw the visitors dominate and the Latics attempt to play on the counterattack; their roles were reversed for the second. But despite constant Wigan pressure, the Baggies didn't look particularly likely to concede again, and it was actually Steve Clarke's side that came closest to scoring after the break when Al-Habsi denied Lukaku from 16 yards.
And so the match finished 2-1. It was a reasonably competent display from Wigan, but it wasn't quite good enough against a West Brom side who really are at the top of the game right now. You can't imagine them seeing out the season in the top five, but it's fun times for now at the Hawthorns.