West Brom take on Chelsea this Saturday afternoon with both sides wanting to get a victory after not a very good start.
Will Chelsea win and start a winning run ahead or will West Brom do the Unthinkable? we discuss all this below:
West Brom have learnt the reality of top division in the harshest way possible, they did not perform in a bad fashion yet have a minus 6 goal difference to show in the start along with 2 consecutive defeats.
They were beaten 3-0 by Leicester and followed it by 5-2 drubbing at Everton away. After such form, facing a top-six side isn’t ideal for Slaven Bilic and his side.
They have also been knocked out of the Carabao Cup and have a lot of work to do to get their campaign back on track and Saturday could be a major opportunity for the same.
Chelsea, on the other hand, started a season with a morale-boosting victory away to Brighton but the confidence was brought back within an instant after a comfortable defeat to the Champions Liverpool the previous week.
Frank Lampard’s side in the first two matches did show good defensive displays and indicated a new pattern of play for the season but in both matches, the performance of the goalkeeper was a big turning point that favoured the opposition. With Eduard Mendy signed by Chelsea this week, will he solve the goalkeeping woes at Chelsea? We’ll find out in the next few weeks.
Chelsea, unlike West Brom, eased past Carabao Cup encounter where they Battered the Championship side Barnsley 6-0. Hat Trick scored by Kai Havertz along with mini appearances for Thiago Silva and Ben Chilwell will really boost this Chelsea side ahead.
Hawthorns has always been a tricky place for the top 6 and Chelsea would want to win the fixture to fade any doubts creeping within away about the season ahead.
West Brom have no fresh concerns to worry but will miss Manager Bilic on the sidelines along with Kieron Gibbs through suspension in the previous match. Ivanovic might not be available for this match and therefore it’s likely for West Brom to stick to the same side as in the last game weeks.
Chelsea will miss long term absentee in Billy Gilmour. Ziyech and Pulisic remain sidelined as said by Frank Lampard in the pre-match conference. Chilwell and Silva will be available on the bench but starting spot looks difficult due to lack of fitness.
Predicted Line Up:
West Brom will keep the same squad in previous game week squads and therefore shall line up in a 5-4-1 formation. Townsend will deputize for Gibbs at Left back position in my opinion and will try to stay tight and frustrate this young Chelsea side.
Expected Line Up: Johnstone, Townsend, O’Shea, Bartley, Ajayi, Furlong, Livermore, Sawyers, Diangana, Pereira, Robinson
Chelsea will also want to keep the same system and line up they played in previous game week bar suspensions and keeper. Kepa Arrizabalaga could be dropped in my opinion and we could see Caballero deputizing in his place.
They will also miss Andreas Christensen through suspension. With still lots of injuries to worry and Callum Hudson Odoi not being trusted in the League, Chelsea will keep using midfielders as wingers which might frustrate a lot of Chelsea fans.
Expected Line Up: Caballero, James, Tomori, Zouma, Alonso, Jorginho, Kante, Kovacic, Havertz, Mount, Werner.
2014 Chelsea v West Bromwich Albion 2-0 Premier League
2015 West Bromwich Albion v Chelsea 3-0 Premier League
2015 West Bromwich Albion v Chelsea 2-3 Premier League
2016 Chelsea v West Bromwich Albion 2-2 Premier League
2016 Chelsea v West Bromwich Albion 1-0 Premier League
2017 West Bromwich Albion v Chelsea 0-1 Premier League
2017 West Bromwich Albion v Chelsea 0-4 Premier League
2018 Chelsea v West Bromwich Albion 3-0 Premier League
Head To Head:
West Brom Wins: 42
Chelsea Wins: 62
Chelsea never used to enjoy visiting the Hawthorns pre-2015 but since then they have won three matches in a row at Hawthorns at an aggregate of 8-2.
Chelsea have a good record against newly-promoted teams, having won 20 out of 30 matches, with only 4 losses among them.
Players to watch out for:
He scored a great free kick in the previous game week and is a very talented player. West Brom will want to use him against Alonso and with set pieces being Chelsea’s Achilles heels previous season, they will look to exploit it.
Another promising player who will be up against Reece James and with his good movement and pace, Chelsea will need to be careful. He scored a beautiful long-range goal against Everton last week and if Chelsea leave spaces behind, he will catch them out.
He might have not got a goal yet but his performances have shown the glimpses of the quality Chelsea’s attack will possess this season. Werner will want to target West Brom’s weak defence and his explosive pace could be a major problem for Bartley and co.
West Brom 0-3 Chelsea
Chelsea have a lot of quality in attack and with Frank Lampard trying to make them defensively solid and play on the counter, Werner, Havertz and Mount trio could be too much to handle for West Brom side. Their defence have been atrocious since the start and I cannot see that changing this week. Chelsea will register consecutive away wins and will recover from the Liverpool loss in my opinion.