West Brom supporters in the Transfer Tavern have been pretty downbeat in recent times after seeing their side suffer a second Championship defeat of the season on Friday night.
Darren Moore’s men went into their clash with former boss Tony Pulis and his Middlesbrough side at the Riverside Stadium off the back of successive victories over Norwich City and Queens Park Rangers, beating the latter 7-1 at the Hawthorns. Yet the Baggies were unable to record a third straight league win as a Daniel Ayala header a minute into added time at the end of the second half was enough to seal all three points for the Teessiders, thus leaving West Brom 11th in the table after the opening five round of fixtures.
As such, there have been many frustrated West Brom fans up and down the country in recent times, with several hoping that their side can get back to winning ways in the league when they host fellow relegated outfit Stoke City at the Hawthorns on Saturday.
Yet some are pinpointing their side’s inconsistent start to the new season down the woes in the middle of the park, with it plausible that the Midlands outfit are already regretting letting midfielder Claudio Yacob leave the club earlier in the summer.
The 31-year-old is currently a free agent after ending his six-year stint at West Brom at the expiration of his contract back in July, thus bringing the curtain down on a fine spell at the Hawthorns in which the former Argentina international played 175 times for the Baggies, 160 of which coming in the Premier League.
And while last season was a testing one for the midfielder given he managed just 16 league appearances for the Midlands club, there is little doubting that Yacob proved his worth to the Baggies during his time at the Hawthorns, and could well still do a job in the heart of their midfield.
Ultimately, Chris Brunt has been utilised by manager Moore in a central midfield role in all five of their Championship matches so far, yet the Northern Ireland international is by trade a wide player, and has had much success in that role, and indeed as a makeshift full back, during his career.
Yet he simply doesn’t look comfortable in the middle of the park alongside England international Jake Livermore – a role that would surely be tailor-made for ex-Baggies ace Yacob.
The 31-year-old was tenacious throughout his time at West Brom and wasn’t afraid to get stuck in and make the opposition aware they were in a game, and with Livermore arguably better on the ball than the Argentine, his presence would surely give the Englishman greater licence and protection to get on the ball and seek to launch attacks.
And such have been their struggles in the middle of the park so far this term, it’s feasible that the Baggies are already regretting letting the combative £3.15 million-rated ace (as per Transfermarkt) leave the club earlier in the summer.
West Brom fans… what do you think? Let us know!