The Lowdown: Baggies begin new campaign
Steve Bruce’s side begin their 2022/23 campaign with a trip to Middlesbrough on Saturday evening, in what is sure to be an early test of their promotion credentials.
West Brom endured a 2021/22 season to forget, completely falling away in the automatic promotion fight and then the playoff battle, with huge improvements required this time around.
Ahead of Saturday’s clash at the Riverside Stadium, the Baggies have suffered a potential setback.
The Latest: Livermore could miss out
Taking to Twitter on Friday, Masi confirmed that Livermore could be unavailable through illness, as West Brom potentially have to make do without their skipper:
“Steve Bruce says Jake Livermore is a doubt for tomorrow’s season owner at Middlesbrough. The skipper has been ill. Bruce says they’ll give him as much time as possible to make it.”
The Verdict: Early concern for Bruce
Livermore is a player with vast experience at a high level and his influence at the Hawthorns is undeniable, with Bruce himself hailing the skipper as a ‘ferocious’ footballer in the past.
Will West Brom gain promotion next season?
For that reason, the thought of him missing out this weekend is a concern, considering West Brom are coming up against a fellow promotion hopeful in Middlesbrough.
Livermore started 37 out of 46 league games last season, highlighting his importance, and his average of 1.9 tackles and 1.7 fouls are further proof of his off-the-ball menace and ability to break up opposition attacks – something that could be key on Saturday.
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