The Baggies have scored eight goals in their last two games, two more than they had netted in their previous 11 combined, but their unexpected revival might have come too late to save them from slipping into the Championship.

“We have had two very important wins that are pricking up people’s ears but unfortunately we have to rely on other people losing,” Allardyce said.

The latest VAR row in a season of problems with the technology drew a scathing response from Allardyce.

“I’m afraid so,” he said when asked if VAR is a laughing stock. “There are too many of us not being given an opportunity to express how to make it better.”

Southampton’s limp display was the worst possible preparation for next weekend’s FA Cup semi-final against Leicester.

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