West Bromwich Albion wore down and then toyed with 10-man Coventry City last night to go second in the Championship with a second successive emphatic away victory. Goals in the space of three minutes shortly before the hour by Paul Robinson and Filipe Teixeira abruptly ended Coventry's run of three league wins, the Portuguese midfielder adding a magical third for a side who had triumphed 3-0 at Watford 10 days ago.
It was an impressive performance from last season's beaten play-off finalists, albeit one helped by Michael Mifsud's 11th-minute sending-off. There were no complaints at Phil Dowd's decision following the Maltese forward's blatant elbow on Carl Hoefkens as they chased Stephen Hughes' lofted pass down the left.
The Staffordshire referee briefly flirted with an historic "trial by TV" controversy, though, as he listened through his earpiece while walking from one side of the pitch to the other before brandishing a card. But the Coventry manager, Iain Dowie, said: "I asked whether the fourth official had watched it [the incident, again on TV] and he assured me he hadn't. All I was wondering was whether video refereeing had been introduced. I'm not moaning – it was the right decision and Michael is very remorseful."
For 45 minutes, Albion found it harder creating openings against 10 men than they had against 11. "The first half was everything I don't like about football, with no fluency," said their manager, Tony Mowbray. "We have to be better. We should be dominant against 10 men but we got our just rewards in the end."
Ishmael Miller steered wide early on after shaking off Ben Turner, and Teixeira finished tamely. The Parisian also demanded a flying tip-over from Dimi Konstantopoulos in a first half when Albion's efforts were hampered by the departure on a stretcher of James Morrison with knee ligament damage, six days after Kevin Phillips' similar injury.
The breakthrough in the 56th minute was well worked and brilliantly finished as Robinson was put through by Zoltan Gera to dink over the keeper in a manner not associated with a hard-man full-back.
Almost immediately, Arjan de Zeeuw dithered, leaving Teixeira to turn sharply and fire home left-footed from an angle. Teixeira added to his tally by spinning Turner and Hughes inside out before spearing a right-foot shot just inside the far post.
The Frenchman then turned creator by rolling a pull-back across goal for Robert Koren to touch in.
Coventry City (4-3-3): Konstantopoulos; Osbourne, De Zeeuw, Turner, Hall; Doyle, S Hughes, Tabb; Best (Kyle, h-t), Adebola (McKenzie, 80), Mifsud. Substitutes not used: Marshall (gk), Ward, Cairo.
West Bromwich Albion (4-5-1): Kiely; Hoefkens, Barnett, Cesar, Robinson; Morrison (Brunt, 36), Koren, Greening, Teixeira, Gera; Miller (Bednar, 77). Substitutes not used: Steele (gk), Hodgkiss, Pele.
Referee: P Dowd (Staffordshire).Reuse content