Preview - West Brom vs Southampton Feb 3 2018

Started by Harry85, Feb 03, 2018, 05:55 PM

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Match Day 26
West Bromwich Albion vs. Southampton
Saturday, February 3rd, 2018
23:00 pm (GMT+8 Timing)
Stadium: The Hawthorns

West Bromwich Albion:
Last five matches form: L D W L D
Average goals per match: 0.8
Average goals against per match: 1.4
Top Scorer: Jay Rodriguez (4)

Last five matches form: D D D L D
Average goals per match: 1.0
Average goals against per match: 1.4
Top Scorer: Charlie Austin (6)

A battle of the basement boys takes place at The Hawthorns this coming Saturday, in a clash which could be of huge significance to both West Bromwich Albion and Southampton? Both teams have been buoyed by progress in the F.A. Cup in recent weeks -  with West Brom's win at Liverpool particularly catching the eye - but it was back to reality in the League in mid-week with Southampton posting a disappointing home draw with Brighton and West Brom predictably being stuffed by Manchester City.

Alan Pardew must be a man who likes a challenge, as he took on a monumental task in trying to galvanise a seemingly dispirited Albion when taking the reins from Tony Pulis. It was always going to take time for the players to adjust to the new style, but there have been signs of encouragement of late, most notably in that cup success at Anfield. It is in the league where it really counts though when you're in West Brom's position.

Despite a largely encouraging start, the reality of Premier League life is now really starting to bite for Southampton boss Mauricio Pellegrino. 1 win in their past 16 league outings has seen the side slump into the bottom three, and its starting to look hard to see a way out for them. Indeed, but for the goals of a restored to the side, Charlie Austin, the situation may be even more dire.

A draw in this game wouldn't be ideal for either side, but anything other than a win for rock bottom West Brom would be a massive disappointment. This may not be pretty, but they do seem to be slowly improving under Alan Pardew and the acquisition of Daniel Sturridge in the January transfer window must go down as a massive coup for the club. That boost in firepower may be just enough to get them over the line.

Prediction: West Brom 2-1 Southampton


Half time: 1-2
Full time: 2 - 3
Shots: 9 - 13
Shots on target: 3 - 5
Corner Kicks: 5 - 7
Possession: 39% - 61%

Gareth Barry and Matthew Phillips were booked for the frustrated home side here, with Ryan Bertrand seeing yellow for Southampton.

There was no fluke about this away win, with Southampton being comfortably in front in all the key stats. In addition they showed a lot of fight - a quality which had been a little lacking of late - in coming from a goal down to grab the three points.

It was West Brom who got off to a dream start here with Ahmed Hegazy heading home from point blank range in just the fourth minute. 86 minutes is a long time to hang on to a lead when you are struggling though, and in the end West Brom couldn't even make it to half-time as their defensive frailties were exposed.
A 15 minute period either side of half time effectively saw Southampton home in this one. Mario Lemina set the ball rolling with a cracking effort in the 40th minute, finding the top corner from outside the box. And Southampton soon led, as Jack Stephens headed home in the 43rd minute to send the Saints into an unlikely half time lead.
James Ward-Prowse's 55th minute free kick made its way into the bottom corner to make the score 1 - 3 and leave West Brom facing an uphill struggle.
Solomon Rondon's 72nd minute header did give the Baggies hope and set up a potentially nervy finale, but Southampton made it over the line to pick up a hugely valuable three points and move up to 14th.
West Brom meanwhile remain rooted to the bottom and are in real danger of becoming cut adrift unless the can turn the corner soon.

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