West Brom v Huddersfield
Saturday, Feb 24 – 15:00
West Brom were knocked out of the FA Cup by Southampton last weekend, and are now without a win in four competitive matches. Centre-back Jonny Evans was restored as Baggies captain earlier this week, after he and three other West Brom players avoided legal action following their recent incident in Barcelona. Alan Pardew’s side have some big games coming up next month, so three points today will be vital. West Brom currently sit bottom of the Premier League table, needing seven points to move above the relegation zone.
Huddersfield lost 2-0 to Man United in their recent FA Cup fixture, after claiming consecutive 4-1 victories over Birmingham City and Bournemouth. Following the Bournemouth result, manager David Wagner claimed that his side needed to build momentum over the coming weeks, to compete with the the teams ahead of them in the Premier League, and the Terriers still have plenty of work to do to get their campaign back on track. Their next league game is away at Spurs, so they will be looking to take advantage of a weakened West Brom side today.
What the stats tell us:
- West Brom lost 1-0 in the reverse fixture earlier this season – the last time they lost both league matches against a newly-promoted side was back in the 2014/15 season (QPR).
- The Baggies are unbeaten in their last five league matches at home against newly-promoted clubs (W3 D2).
- Huddersfield have only lost one of their last seven matches at the Hawthorns in league competitions (W3 D3).
- The last time Alan Pardew faced off against Huddersfield was back in 2010, with his Southampton side beating the Terriers 5-0.
- Only two clubs have won three of their opening 27 Premier League matches and avoided relegation – West Brom 2004/05 and Fulham 2007/08.
- West Brom have only managed to win 27% of the matches in which they’ve gone ahead this season (3 of 11).
- The Terriers have lost nine away matches in the Premier League by a 2+ goal margin without scoring – one fewer than the league record (Ipswich – 10).
- Huddersfield have lost 2-0 to three teams starting the day in the relegation zone this season (Stoke, Swansea, and West Ham).
- The Baggies have netted four of their last five goals in the Premier League from corners, with Chris Brunt assisting three.
This could be a really significant match for both sides come the end of the season. Huddersfield have experienced some promising results recently, but their form away from home has been consistently poor this season. The Terriers just can’t seem to find the back of the net away from the John Smiths Stadium. West Brom will have to take something today otherwise they may as well throw in the towel. It should be a close game, but don’t expect too many goals.