West Bromwich Albion midfielder Claudio Yacob was instrumental once more as his side defeated Norwich City 1-0 to claim their 16th Premier League clean sheet of 2016.
The Baggies entered the clash at Carrow Road boasting an impressive record this season of having only conceded in four league matches, keeping five clean sheets.
Stoke City, Sunderland, Southampton, Watford and Aston Villa had all tried and failed and now it was Norwich’s turn to score a blank, with the Baggies triumphing 1-0.
A Salomon Rondon header just after half-time was the difference between the sides on the day, yet it was Claudio Yacob who was the game’s real standout player.
|Interceptions||Effective Clearances||Duel Winners||Aerial Winners||Ball Recoveries||Touches||Accurate Passes||Mins Played|
As per the table provided by Opta Stats, Yacob was central to everything good about West Brom’s play and contributed greatly in a number of key areas.
The three-capped Argentine international made three effective clearances, three ball recoveries, five aerial winners, seven interceptions and eight defensive duel winners as he dominated the midfield.
Most Argentines are renowned for their excellent passing range and flair through the middle, yet Yacob is more of a rugged defensive midfielder and certainly knows how to protect his back four.
The 28-year-old was calm in possession, taking 50 touches and adding 27 accurate passes.
His performance epitomised everything which is good about West Brom under Tony Pulis, a simple style with a real sense of solidarity and organisation which helps them succeed.
The Baggies may not have the best record against the better teams, yet by consistently keeping clean sheets against their direct rivals, relegation will forever elude them.