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Life is never dull watching West Bromwich Albion. They have become known as the ultimate “yo-yo” club in English football having had four promotions and three relegation seasons in the last nine years, with the other two years producing a Wembley play-off final defeat and a memorable last-day escape from relegation out of the EPL.

 

And you can follow the latest chapter in the Baggies saga by watching West Brom live right here with Live Sports Network, the number one source for live football online

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History Of WBA
 

The club was formed in 1878 by workers from Salter's Spring Works in West Bromwich, and have played their home games at their ground, The Hawthorns, since 1900. Since being one of the founder members of the inaugural Football League, they have spent the majority of the intervening years in the top league of English football. During this time, they have been League Champions once, in 1919/20 and have triumphed in the FA Cup on no less than five occasions although the last victory was back in 1968, this representing their last major trophy win. They have won the Football League Cup once, in 1966. They recently have been more of a yo-yo club with four visits to the EPL including the current season.

 

WBA were the first team to adopt the ‘Albion’ suffix after the Albion district of West Bromwich where some of the then players lived or worked. They turned professional in 1885 and won their first ever trophy - the FA Cup - three years later beating Preston North End 2-1. They won their second FA Cup in 1892 and suffered their first relegation to Division Two at the turn of the century which also coincided with their first season at The Hawthorns. They won promotion the following year but went back down a couple of years later. The Second Division Championship was won in 1910/11 and another FA Cup final followed the next season although Barnsley beat them in after a replay.
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Following the First World War, Albion won their first and so far only League Championship. There then followed a mixed period of success and failure with league runners up followed by relegation and further cup final defeats. In 1930/31 WBA achieved something that no other club has before or since - winning promotion from the Second Division and winning the FA Cup, beating Birmingham City 2-1. 1954 nearly them become the first team in the 20th Century to achieve the league and cup double but the FA Cup win, again over Preston, was not matched by the League Championship as they narrowly missed out to Wolverhampton Wanderers. 

 

Over the next three decades West Brom became the nearly men with regular long cup runs and top five finishes in the top division. Manager Jimmy Hagan guided them to their only League Cup success in 1966 and Hagan’s successor Alan Ashman watched his team lift the FA Cup two years later thanks to the late Jeff Astle‘s extra time winner. Since then, Don Howe, Johnny Giles, Ron Atkinson and Ronnie Allen have all tried to bring back to glory days to The Hawthorns. League Cup Final defeat, UEFA Cup and European Cup Winners’ Cup quarter-finals and FA Cup semi-finals have all come and gone. The mid-1980s saw a decline in WBA’s fortunes with relegation to Division Two in 1986 heralding a period of sixteen years outside the top flight. Five years later, they found themselves in the third tier of English football for the first time. Two years after being relegated, Albion beat Port Vale in the Wembley play-off final to return to the newly renamed First Division. Ossie Ardiles left the manager’s role to join his old club Spurs and Albion spent the next few years consolidating their position in the division.

Gary Megson’s appointment in 2000 saw a distinct improvement and promotion to the Premiership was achieved in 2001/2. They then were relegated, promoted again and then almost but no quite relegated when Megson’s successor, WBA , Manchester United and England legend Bryan Robson guided them to unexpected survival on the last day of the season.

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The good feeling did not last and they went down again the following year. Robson was then replaced by the former Middlesbrough and Celtic centre-half and then-Hibernian manager Tony Mowbray. Mowbray guided Albion to the play-off final in 2007 where they lost 1-0 to Derby County. The following season of 2007/8 saw West Brom reach yet another FA Cup semi-final where they lost to eventual winners Portsmouth but the supporters were more than consoled when Albion secured the ‘Championship’ and were once again promoted to the Premier League.

 

However, they were once again relegated straight away despite manager Tony Mowbray producing an entertaining side. Mowbray was replaced by Roberto Di Matteo who won promotion for the Baggies (yet again) at his first attempt.

 

Previous experience, both generally and in Albion’s case, strongly suggests another fascinating battle for survival in the top-flight. Watching West Brom live has always been something of a roller-coaster ride for fans. You can see the latest West Bromwich Albion drama unfold live right here on free-football.tv.

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Tags: West Bromwich Albion, West Brom live, live football online, FA Cup, WBA, West Brom, League Cup, UEFA Cup, European Cup Winners Cup, Premiership, Bryan Robson, Premier League, Tony Mowbray

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