Midtjylland 0 Albion 2 - UPDATE
ALBION tamed Denmark's very own `Wolves' with two goals in three
second-half minutes to wrap up their tour with a second successive
The Baggies were too powerful for the Super League side and the
impressive Scott Dobie's second goal in as many games in the 75th
minute sealed a deserved victory after Neil Clement had opened the
The early signs are certainly encouraging for Albion's new-look
defence having failed to concede a single goal on their three-game
Albion played with a back four - featuring new boys Riccardo
Scimeca, Darren Purse and later Martin Albrechtsen - for the third
successive game and rarely looked in danger.
This may have been a friendly fixture being played in the
picturesque setting of seaside resort Kerteminde, but it turned out
to be a highly competitive workout for the Baggies.
Albion's bid to finish their tour unbeaten was aided by the absence
of Midtjylland's highly-rated striker, Egyptian international
Mohamed Zidan, who scored a match-winning double against Thomas
Gaardsoe's former club Aalborg in Saturday's Danish Super League
Yet Russell Hoult still had to be on his toes as early as the fourth
minute to prevent them snatching a spectacular lead.
Centre-half Marc Moller met Jan Frederiksen's centre with a sweet
bicycle kick which the alert Baggies No.1 saved low to his left.
Midtjylland, who share the same nickname as Albion's Black Country
neighbours Wolves and whose mascot is a spiting image of `Wolfie',
won a dangerous free-kick moments later but central midfielder
Jesper Mikkelsen dragged his shot harmlessly wide.
James O'Connor, turning in another industrious performance in the
engine room, had Albion's first threatening moment when he struck
the foot of the near post with a miscued low cross which keeper
Peter Skov-Jensen had covered.
Albion, captained by Ł500,000 summer signing Purse in injured
skipper Sean Gregan's absence, were then relieved to see Michael
Hansen blaze just over from 20 yards before taking control.
Dobie was the first to go close with a powerful header from Jason
Koumas' corner before Geoff Horsfield's backheel sent the impressive
Clement away down the left.
The former Chelsea star, deployed on the left wing, beat two
defenders before unleashing an 18-yard drive with Skov-Jensen palmed
away and the danger was cleared before the lurking Dobie and Bernt
Haas could pounce.
O'Connor, Albion's star man against FC Fredericia on Saturday, was
in the thick of it again and he wasn't too far away with a 20-yard
snapshot from Clement's crossfield ball.
Koumas collected Albion's second booking of the tour in the 33rd
minute when, after mis-controlling the ball, he brought down Mads
Overgaard - a challenge which ended the Midtjylland striker's
Moments later, a forceful O'Connor run almost created an Albion
opener. The midfielder's left-wing cross was headed goalwards by the
towering Haas and the panic-stricken Mikkelsen sliced the ball
against his own post before Haas headed the rebound over.
Horsfield and Dobie then both fired wide from the edge of the box in
quick succession as Albion finished the half on top, although Skov-
Jensen had largely been untroubled.
Albion were soon on the attack again after the break and O'Connor
brought a disappointing end to a sweet move by firing over from 20
But the Baggies were fortunate not to slip behind in the 56th minute.
Substitute Leon Jesson exploited the acres of space down the Albion
right to charge into the box but wasted Midtjylland's best chance to
date by slicing wide of Hoult's left-hand upright.
It was Koumas' turn to try the spectacular next when he guided an
overhead kick from the edge of he box just wide of Skov-Jensen's far
And the Baggies finally got the goal their physical supremacy had
warranted when Clement rose at the near post to head Koumas' corner
past Skov-Jensen in the 72nd-minute.
Albion's second arrived just three minutes later when workaholic
Dobie timed his run to perfection to race on to Scimeca's 40-yard
ball over the top before coolly beating Skov-Jensen with the outside
of his right boot.
Haas could have made it three after being sent clear down the right
by Horsfield's flick-on, but the Swiss international delayed his
shot too long, allowing Skov-Jensen to narrow the angle and block.
Dennis Sorensen had a glorious chance to become the first player to
beat an Albion keeper on the club's tour when Jesson's cross found
him unmarked in the box, only for the Midtjylland striker to fire
straight at Hoult.
Jesson gave the Baggies shot-stopper one last scare in stoppage time
when he dragged a left-footed drive just wide of the far post - but
Albion ran out worthy winners.
MIDTJYLLAND (4-4-2): Skov-Jensen; Smedegaard, Petersen, Moller,
Frederiksen; Madsen (R Hansen 65), M Hansen, Mikkelsen (Nielsen 70),
Erhenede; Overgaard (Jesson 35), Sorensen. Sub not used: Heinz.
ALBION (4-4-2): Hoult; Scimeca, Purse, Gaardsoe (Albrechtsen 56),
Robinson; Haas, Koumas (Dyer 75), O'Connor, Clement; Horsfield,
Dobie. Subs not used: Kuszczak (gk), Miotto (gk), Johnson, Moore,
GOALS: ALBION - Clement (72), Dobie (75).
BOOKINGS: ALBION - Koumas (foul, 33).
REFEREE: Claus Bo Larsen (Denmark)
ATTENDANCE: 700 approx
ALBION STARMAN: Scott Dobie