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West Bromwich Albion

West Bromwich Albion Preview – Wigan Athletic (A)

West Brom travel to Wigan on Saturday in hope of picking up their first three points on the road this season, albeit they have only played four games away from The Hawthorns so far, collecting two points in the process during visits to White Hart Lane and Villa Park respectively, both games ending 1-1.

Historically the DW Stadium hasn’t been a happy hunting ground for the Baggies who seem to put in some of their worst performances against the Latics for one reason or the other.  Our only Premier League success there came way back in January 2006 when a solo goal from Danish full-back, Martin Albrechtsen, gave ten men Albion a 1-0 victory on the day with a massive thanks also going to West Brom Goalkeeper Tomasz Kuszczak who produced ‘that’ save to deny former Baggies hit man Jason Roberts from snatching a point deep into stoppage time. Since then we have taken just a single point away from our visits to Wigan, which came last season in fact when the two sides played out a 1-1 draw. Speaking of which, I was one of those Albion fans last season leaving the DW feeling slightly embarrassed of the point gained from Paul Scharner’s 65th minute equaliser against his former club, which at the time was our first attempt on target. However as I don’t want to sound all doom and gloom, West Brom fans could have the same gripe regarding the reverse fixture at The Hawthorns earlier that season when Wigan created very little but still managed to leave the West Midlands with all three points following Victor Moses’ first goal of the season and a Jordi Gomez penalty early in the second half, this despite West Brom taking the lead through an exquisite Steven Reid free-kick and generally dominating the play as well as creating the better chances throughout.

Saturday should be an exciting game to watch for the neutrals as both sides have a reputation for getting the ball on the deck and playing an attractive style of football, both sides also go in to the game high on confidence. Wigan recorded an excellent 1-0 victory against Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane last weekend which followed their first three points of the campaign after defeating West Ham United 2-1 the week prior. We are all aware of high flying West Brom’s start to the season which they will be looking to continue when they travel to Wigan and as previously mentioned they will be looking to improve on  their current away form also.

Team news for West Brom; Head Coach Steve Clarke has confirmed that Ben Foster is rated 60-40 to take part on Saturday due to a groin injury sustained during Mondays 2-0 win against Southampton. The former Manchester United stopper has been in Germany this week to see a specialist regarding the injury, which may see Boaz Myhill given a rare start in goal for the Baggies. Myhill, who turned 30 during the week, has only made half a dozen of appearances in the Premier League for West Brom since joining from Hull City in the summer of 2010. Steve Clarke has also confirmed that both Steven Reid and James Morrison have been back in training this week with hopes that both will be fit and ready to be called upon if required.

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