West Bromwich Albion goalkeeper Scott Carson has been backed to recover from his horrendous mistake that gifted Aston Villa their match-winning goal.
Gabriel Agbonlahor’s shot from an acute angle deflected off Carson’s body and into the net and was determined as an own goal.
Carson certainly made amends with some stunning saves in the second half but the stigma of yet another mistake in a big game will haunt him again.
However, Albion captain Jonathan Greening said the England goalkeeper was strong enough to put the mistake behind him and said his team-mate was still a top-class performer.
“The second goal before half-time killed us,” Greening admitted. “It has just come off Scotty’s back as he has saved it.
“Scotty has saved us plenty of times this season and he will be a top keeper for the rest of his career.
“He will be gutted but he has done plenty of good things this season. He has apologised and that is the end of it. In the second half, he made some great saves.”
Greening said Albion could take great heart from the way they took the game to Villa and how they dominated possession for long spells. “We came out and played really well in the second half and we couldn’t get the equaliser,” he said.
“We have battled well against a side who are fourth in the league. We played quite well and showed we are a good team. If we can cut out the stupid mistakes, we can be a threat to anyone.
“Robert Koren thought he deserved a penalty at the end and we need a bit of the luck that other teams seem to get.”
A bright note for Albion was the full debut of on-loan striker Jay Simpson, who enjoyed his first taste of Premier League football. The Arsenal youngster was a threat with his pace and power, and Greening thinks Simpson has a bright future in the game.
“For a 20-year-old, he is confident,” Greening said. “I thought he showed some nice touches today and the more he plays, the better he will become.
“He has a little bit of skill and a lot of pace and hopefully he can get a goal early doors for us and will be an important player. He is not a shy lad and I thought he did really well.”