West Bromwich Albion boss Sam Allardyce has backed Semi Ajayi to quickly bounce back from the mistake he made in the derby against Villa.
The Baggies were 90 seconds away from beating Dean Smith’s side on Sunday but were ultimately held to a point after Kienan Davis fired in to level the scores at 2-2 in stoppage time.
Villa’s first goal arrived after Ajayi – who had been recalled to the side at the expense of Dara O’Shea – gave away a needless penalty for a foul on Ross Barkley.
Davis’ equaliser meanwhile arrived after Bartley – who has been in outstanding form in recent months – got caught in two minds when it came to clearing a cross.
But while Allardyce was left frustrated by those individual errors, he refused to criticise his two centre-backs.
And he has backed them and the rest of Albion’s squad to respond with an impressive performance in Monday’s Black Country derby against Wolves.
“They know they shouldn’t have done it,” Allardyce said when asked about the individual errors in the Villa game.
“But sometimes those things happen when you are under pressure and we are working under enormous pressure.
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“There was simply no need for Semi to tackle, the player (Barkley) was going away from goal.
“I put him back in the side because he played well when he came on at Chelsea.
“Dara had done nothing wrong but we did get beat by three at Leicester and Semi did well in the second half when he came on.
“He is also a big threat in the opposition’s box.
“We recovered from that mistake and recovered well enough to get ourselves in front.
“Then at the worst possible time we had another individual error.”
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