Tony Pulis’ West Brom side welcome struggling Crystal Palace to the Hawthorns on Saturday, hoping to take another three points at home this season. Pulis’ men have performed well so far and sit in 8th place. Before kick-off, the Baggies hold a seven-point advantage over 9th place West Ham and are only four points away from Everton in 7th.
Crystal Palace, meanwhile, have lost 16 of their 26 matches this season and are currently in the relegation zone. Sam Allardyce’s men have had issues defensively all season and are paying for their lack of organisation. The Eagles face a fight to avoid relegation.
West Brom are in fine form coming into this tie, having not been beaten in their last five Premier League fixtures. Since being demolished 4-0 by Tottenham, the Baggies have won three and drawn two. Last time out they beat a struggling Bournemouth side 2-1 and will expect to do the same against relegation-threatened Crystal Palace.
2017 hasn’t been a year of joy for Crystal Palace so far. The Eagles have only won two of their last 10 Premier League fixtures. However, the wins have come against close rivals Middlesborough and Bournemouth. Sam Allardyce’s men will want to build on their 1-0 victory against Middlesborough in order to build some momentum ahead of the relegation run-in.
West Brom come into this game with only one main man missing. Matt Phillips has been a key player for the Baggies this season and would be a useful asset to have available on Saturday. However, the Scot is not expected to feature. Phillips suffered a hamstring injury in the build-up to West Brom’s win against Bournemouth and hasn’t fully recovered.
Gareth Mcauley suffered a head injury in the tie against Bournemouth but is likely to feature from the start.
Crystal Palace have more injury concerns than their opponents coming into this fixture. Steve Mandanda, Connor Wickham, and Pape Souare are all sidelined. Loic Remy, Mathieu Flamini, and Bakary Sako are facing a race against time to be fully fit to take on the Baggies while club captain Scott Dann should be available to Allardyce on Saturday.
In a game that isn’t likely to be first on Match of the Day on Saturday, the Baggies’ impressive form this season certainly makes them favourites and the most likely to take the three points.
Despite Palace’s struggles this season, West Brom have only scored three more goals than their opponents, yet there is a huge contrast in league position. The Baggies have based their own form on their ability to keep the opposition quiet.
This game should prove to be a tight affair. West Brom do not concede many despite not scoring a load either, while Palace have not been impressive in either department.
Score prediction: West Brom 1-0 Crystal Palace