Premier League Preview – West Bromwich Albion
Here we are, on the eve of the final game of what has been a tough and testing season that ends with a tinge of triumph.
Many are likely to scoff at the use of the term ‘triumph’ but you only have to look at the opposition this weekend to see what could have happened.
West Bromwich Albion make their final trip to South London for what could be a while. They have followed a similar path to us in previous seasons from a managerial perspective and they are probably ruing the decision to leave Alan Pardew in charge as long as they did.
It could have been interesting to see how Frank de Boer may have got on should the owners not have taken the decision to get rid after the Burnley game. Thankfully, the rest is now history and the Eagles will be heading into their sixth successive season in the Premier League which is a club record.
The summer will be one of attention and application following the last couple that were flawed in one way or another but an absolute must is the retention of Roy Hodgson and to allow him the freedom he needs to evolve this squad.
Before those transfer window meltdowns take place all across social media and beyond, let us just enjoy the final game of the season, thank the players, some of which may not be here next season, and cheer them on to a potential tenth place finish.
TEAM NEWS (courtesy of Physio Room)
CRYSTAL PALACE – Joel Ward (ankle), Connor Wickham (groin), Bakary Sako (ankle), Scott Dann (knee) and Jason Puncheon (knee) all miss out through injury.
WEST BROMWICH ALBION – Gareth Barry (knee) and James Morrison (achilles) are the only absentees for the Baggies.
The last time these two sides met at Selhurst Park was in August 2016 when a Baggies side managed by Tony Pulis returned home with all three points courtesy of a solitary second half goal from Venezuelan striker Salomon Rondon.
Who Scored man of the match – Salomon Rondon (8.0)
Last FIVE meetings between the two sides;
- 02/12/2017 West Bromwich Albion 0-0 Crystal Palace
- 22/07/2017 West Bromwich Albion 0-2 Crystal Palace
- 04/03/2017 West Bromwich Albion 0-2 Crystal Palace
- 13/08/2016 Crystal Palace 0-1 West Bromwich Albion
- 27/02/2016 West Bromwich Albion 3-2 Crystal Palace
Last FIVE results for Palace;
- 05/05/2018 Stoke City 1-2 Crystal Palace
- 28/04/2018 Crystal Palace 5-0 Leicester City
- 21/04/2018 Watford 0-0 Crystal Palace
- 14/04/2018 Crystal Palace 3-2 Brighton & Hove Albion
- 07/04/2018 Bournemouth 2-2 Crystal Palace
Last FIVE results for West Brom;
- 05/05/2018 West Bromwich Albion 1-0 Tottenham Hotspur
- 28/04/2018 Newcastle United 0-1 West Bromwich Albion
- 21/04/2018 West Bromwich Albion 2-2 Liverpool
- 15/04/2018 Manchester United 0-1 West Bromwich Albion
- 07/04/2018 West Bromwich Albion 1-1 Swansea City
FORM PLAYERS (courtesy of Who Scored)
Top two rated players from each team so far this season;
- Wilfried Zaha 7.36
- James Tomkins 7.30
- Craig Dawson 7.03
- Ahmed Hegazi 7.00
ONE TO WATCH
Former clubs – Wycombe Wanderers, Blackpool, Sheffield United (loan), Queens Park Rangers
After joining Wycombe in 1999, Phillips made his professional debut for the club in 2008 and went on to make over seventy appearances. Newly promoted Blackpool came calling in 2010 and paid an initial £350,000 for the winger who had a short spell at Sheffield United in his time at Bloomfield Road. He impressed at Bramall Lane with six goals in six appearances but was later sold to Queens Park Rangers for £5million in 2013. The 27-year-old was given a route back to the Premier League when West Bromwich Albion signed him in 2016.
After playing for England at under 19 and under 20 level, Phillips made his debut for Scotland in 2012 for whom he qualified through his grandparents.
Final league position – 19th
Why they did not sack Alan Pardew a game or two earlier may always be a regret of the Baggies owners but hindsight is a wonderful thing. Says everything that caretaker boss Darren Moore has been awarded manager of the month the same day relegation to the Championship was confirmed. The second tier of English football is notoriously competitive but if West Brom can hit the ground running next season, there is no reason why they cannot join the list of clubs that have bounced back to the Premier League at the first attempt.
- TEB prediction – home win
- Dan Watts’ prediction (see link below) – draw
- Who Scored prediction – home win
BETTING ODDS (courtesy of Paddy Power)
- Home – 4/6
- Draw – 11/4
- Away – 7/2
- Both teams to score – 8/11