West Brom targeted Edouard Mendy during their stunning win at Chelsea on Saturday, Baggies boss Sam Allardyce has revealed.
The shock Premier League result of the weekend saw the Baggies claim a shock 5-2 victory at Stamford Bridge, delivering the first defeat of Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea reign.
Christian Pulisic netted the opener for Chelsea but after Thiago Silva’s red card, the visitors scored two quickfire goals to go in 2-1 up at half time.
They refused to rest on their lead as a Callum Robinson brace and Mbaye Diagne’s calm finish helped seal the famous win as they look for an unlikely route out of the Premier League’s relegation battle.
Allardyce admits his side were helped by Chelsea playing with ten men for an hour but suggested the match was won and lost with the way they identified Mendy’s limitations.
Allardyce labelled the Frenchman ‘rash’ for his part in West Brom’s first goal, which saw Matheus Pereira lob him easily as he latched onto a long ball.
“Letting them play out from the back for the goalkeeper would be a mistake,” Allardyce told talkSPORT when asked how he masterminded the brilliant victory.
“That may have been a tactic we used later in the game but if it works try and keep doing it for as long as possible. That’s why we played two split up front with Mateus Pereira and Mbaye Diagne.
“The press worked very, very well and there is something with their goalkeeper, who can be rash, he can rush out. If you saw the first goal we scored, he came dashing to the edge of his box and didn’t get anywhere near.
“We felt every time we went back to the goal and we put him under pressure that gave us good opportunities.
“Obviously you could say the sending off helped, playing against ten men, but you’ve got to beat what’s still a very good side.”
It was West Brom’s best result of the season, however, it’s unlikely to lead to Premier League survival with Allardyce’s men still eight points off safety.
Allardyce was very happy with his side’s finishing at Chelsea but believes that’s been their downfall throughout the 2020/21 season.
“Our quality of finishing is something that I’ve been looking for for a long time,” he added.
“Our poor finishing has cost us many points but on Saturday it was absolutely spot on. The quality in the build-up to our finishing was brilliant.”