Boos for Jonny Evans before West Brom crash out of FA Cup
Two of the so-called “Taxi Four” play for West Brom.
Jonny Evans was named together with Gareth Barry in the West Brom team against Southampton in the FA Cup on Saturday despite their midweek misdemeanours.
Evans and Barry were two of four Albion players to allegedly steal a taxi during the club’s warm-weather training camp in Barcelona. Of the others, back-up goalkeeper Boaz Myhill was on the bench and Jake Livermore missed the fifth round tie through injury.
Here, Press Association Sport takes a look at how Evans fared on his first appearance for West Brom since the incident in Spain.
There was some boo-ing for both players from a small section of the West Brom support after their names were read out on the team sheet moments before kick-off. Evans, stripped of the captaincy by manager Alan Pardew as Gareth McAuley skippered the side, was first to be announced and it seemed the fan’s dissatisfaction was more audible towards him. That was as far as it went, though, with the Hawthorns faithful not going as far as to heckle when Evans or Barry touched the ball during the match.
West Brom made the worst possible start, falling a goal behind after 11 minutes. Evans was one of two Albion defenders dragged underneath the ball towards the front post at a James Ward-Prowse corner, leaving Wesley Hoedt unmarked to volley the ball past Ben Foster from 10 yards out.
Evans probably saved his side from going two goals behind just before half time. Nathan Redmond raced away from Gareth McAuley down the right and set up Dusan Tadic inside the penalty area. Tadic was about to flick the ball into the path of the arriving Guido Carrillo for a simple tap-in but Evans raced across from his left-back position to cover brilliantly to make the block. However, moments before Evans had jogged back into position after West Brom had given the ball away and Southampton were on the attack.
Much like West Brom, Evans began badly before settling and improving significantly following Southampton’s second goal. He was part of a well-marshalled defence after Tadic’s strike and even contributed as an attacking alternative late on as Albion worked hard to force an equalising goal.