West Brom could move to the brink of clinching promotion if they can maintain their winning streak in this afternoon’s clash away to Blackburn.
The Baggies go to Ewood Park knowing that a win would put them back ahead of Leeds, who play tomorrow, at the summit, while they will also begin the game knowing the outcome of Brentford’s lunchtime trip to Derby – any dropped points for the Bees could enable Albion to open a sizeable gap on the Londoners, who start the day five points behind Slaven Bilic’s team.
Will West Brom finish top of the Championship?
West Brom welcome back Ahmed Hegazi after he served his one-match suspension in midweek, although Bilic is sweating on the fitness of Grady Diangana, who was forced off against Derby on Wednesday. Kieran Gibbs. meanwhile, is unlikely to be fit enough to feature this afternoon. [via Birmingham Live]
Our predicted Baggies line-up shows two changes from the team that started in midweek against the Rams:
As ever, Sam Johnstone will be between the sticks, while Conor Townsend keeps his place at left-back in the probable absence of Gibbs. Dara O’Shea, a scorer on Wednesday, should start at right-back while Hegazi will likely return to the team now that he is available again. Kyle Bartley could be the man to drop out, with Semi Ajayi lining up alongside the Egyptian in the centre of defence.
Bilic could keep faith with the defensive midfield pairing of Romaine Sawyers and Jake Livermore, with the latter giving a very impressive performance in midweek upon his return to the starting XI. Up front, Charlie Austin may not have found the net against Derby but his good form prior to then should be enough to see him retain the lone centre-forward role.
There could be changes to the composition of the trio playing behind Austin. Kamil Grosicki has been preferred on the left wing in recent games and provided an assist on Wednesday so he is likely to start again today. Diangana might not be risked from the start if his fitness is in doubt so he could drop out of the team, with Matheus Pereira moving over to the right flank as a result. In turn, that leaves a vacancy in the number 10 role which could see Filip Krovinovic restored to the starting line-up.
While it would be disappointing for Diangana to miss out following his goal in midweek, Bilic at least has an abundance of attacking options to call upon if the on-loan winger doesn’t recover in time for the Blackburn game.
West Brom fans, is this the line-up that you would pick for today or would you make some changes? Have your say by commenting below!
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