Slaven Bilic was left frustrated in his first home game of the season as Millwall came back from a goal down to earn a draw in a match the Baggies will look back on as two points dropped.
Bilic named the same starting XI that beat Nottingham Forest a week earlier meaning the deadline day quartet will have to wait until Tuesday to make their Hawthorns debuts.
Albion again looked comfortable and confident on the ball in the first half with Romaine Sawyers pulling the strings and Filip Krovinovic looking busy, floating just off the striker. The Croatian thought he had opened the scoring with a fine strike only for the goal to be disallowed, Kenneth Zohore being flagged offside in the build up.
It was a difficult home debut for the £8million signing from Cardiff. He struggled to put his stamp on the game and missed a glorious opportunity to open his Baggies account when he could only fire straight at the keeper from six yards out after some excellent work from Matt Phillips.
There was lots to admire from Albion but no real cutting edge, Zohore’s chance really the only one of note in the first period.
Fifteen minutes into the second half and Albion did get their goal; a dangerous in-swinging free kick from Phillips could only be flicked into his own net by Millwall centre back Alex Pearce, under pressure from Kyle Bartley.
Bilic suggested after the win at Forest that he wanted his side to kill games off and he will be annoyed that Albion didn’t push on and get the second goal that would have made the game safe. Our failure to do so was to be punished.
Hal Robson-Kanu, a second half substitute for the ineffective Zohore, needlessly gave the ball away and Millwall raced upfield. A high cross into the box wasn’t claimed by Sam Johnstone and when the ball was knocked down at the back post, Matt Smith was on hand to hammer the ball into the roof of the net.
Both sides had chances to win the game but on reflection a draw was probably a fair result. Millwall set themselves up to try and take a point and West Brom didn’t do enough to break them down.
I went into this match with high hopes so it was a disappointing result but we remain unbeaten and I am confident that this season will be a successful one. I like the way Bilic sets his side up and I love how confident we look in possession. Once we a bit of flair and most importantly, a goal-scorer, I think we have all the ingredients to challenge for promotion.
We face Millwall again on Tuesday night in the League Cup and with our new additions likely to feature, I feel we should progress to the next round and hopefully give Bilic a selection headache ahead of our next Championship fixture at Graeme Jones’ Luton.