West Bromwich Albion journey to face Midlands rivals Birmingham Metropolis on Sunday afternoon in what might make for a fierce conflict.
On Friday, Steve Bruce revealed that the Baggies had simply 11 match gamers over the worldwide break, while the remainder of the squad had been representing their respective nations.
In accordance with the 61-year-old, notable accidents embrace “exciting” 21-year-old striker Daryl Dike, Kenneth Zohore, Kean Bryan and Matty Phillips, who’re all at totally different phases of the rehabilitation course of after struggling damage setbacks.
Aside from the damage to Dike, the squad is in the identical form as earlier than the worldwide break, which is a giant optimistic for Baggies followers. Nonetheless, Bruce nonetheless has quite a bit to contemplate, as Albion will probably be trying so as to add to Birmingham’s disappointing sample of failing to attain in any of the last three games.
Andy Carroll will probably be hoping to begin, having not performed a full 90 minutes since late February, however which may be a troublesome ask, with the partnership between Karlan Grant and Callum Robinson beginning to blossom over the previous few weeks, with 5 targets within the final three video games for the pair.
By way of system, it’s anticipated that West Brom will proceed to deploy their defensive three formation, and it could not be a shock if we noticed each groups shaping up in a 3-5-2 system and going man-for-man.
Right here is our predicted Albion XI forward of the conflict with Birmingham on Sunday:
Johnstone; Ajayi, Bartley, Clarke; Furlong, Gardner-Hickman, Livermore, Mowatt, Townsend; Robinson, Grant
It could possibly be the case that Steve Bruce will stick fairly than twist, regardless of a comparatively disappointing efficiency final day trip in opposition to Bristol Metropolis.
By way of type coming into this sport, West Brom maintain the benefit, having bagged two wins and two draws throughout the final 5 fixtures; together with a powerful 1-0 defeat of Championship leaders Fulham.
In the meantime, Lee Bowyer’s Birmingham aspect come into Sunday’s conflict having picked up just five points from a possible 15, not the type of type you’d need to be in in the course of the enterprise finish of the season.
Regardless of failing to score in four out of their last five games, it’s sure that the Blues will really feel the strain from their residence help coming into this tie and can look to disrupt Steve Bruce’s aspect because the Baggies look so as to add to their ascending momentum.
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