West Bromwich Albion welcome Everton to the Hawthorns as they look to build on their opening day win against Crystal Palace. Everton are coming off a hard-earned draw against Tottenham Hotspur and they will have to thank Marten Stekelenburg for that result. The Baggies got off to a good start as a Salomon Rondon scored a goal in a smash and grab win against Crystal Palace. Meanwhile, Everton squandered a lead as Eric Lamela headed Spurs back into the match, with the scores finishing 1-1.
WEST BROMWICH ALBION
Tony Pulis in not expected to make too many changes from last week and has most of his players at his disposal. Chris Brunt is still out.
Besic, Browning, Coleman, Pennington are out for the Toffees. While Romelu Lukaku, Ashley Williams and Bolasie are expected to feature. Bolasie is the likeliest having had more pre-season minutes than the Welshman and he also made an appearance on the opening day. Lukaku is expected feature of the bench.
WEST BROMWICH ALBION (4-2-3-1)
Forster- Dawson, McAuley, Olsson, Evans- Yacob, Fletcher- Phillips, Berahino, Gardner- Rondon
Stekelenburg- Williams, Jagielka, Funes Mori- McCarthy, Gueye, Barry, Baines- Barkley, Bolasie- Deulofeu
SALOMON RONDON- The striker has been in impressive form for the Baggies and will be their torchbearer in their attacking endeavors. He has scored in their last three consecutive matches and will only be the 1st player to score in 4 consecutive games since Saido Berahino achieved the feat in October 2014. The Baggies will mostly look to retain their shape and hit them on the counter and the combination of Phillips, Berahino and Rondon will be crucial if they are to come out of the match with any points.
ROSS BARKLEY- The temperamental English international made his customary bright start to the season as he scored the opening goal against Spurs last seek. But fans will be all too aware of his tendency to completely fade away as the season progresses and one of the main objectives of Ronald Koeman would be to harness the potential of Barkley in a potent manner. He has failed to express himself consistently and if the duo striker a successful partnership the sky is the limit for the midfielder.
- Everton’s new signing, Yannick Bolasie, could be the second player after Gaston Ramirez to play the first two matches of the season for different teams against the same opposition!
- Everton striker Romelu Lukaku scored 17 goals when on loan with the Baggies which is till date the highest number of goals scored by any player in a single season for them.
- Since Tony Pulis took charge of West Brom, the team have kept 22 clean sheets in the League. Only Manchester City, Arsenal and Manchester United have bettered that tally.
Everton will most likely boss possession and be the more adventurous of the two sides even though they are away from home. This is fixture they would have earmarked for a win but the Baggies will provide stiff challenge as they always tend to do. Everton have to keep their patience and probe away. While West Bromwich Albion will be happy to absorb the pressure and look to hit on the break, as with the likes of Phillips and Berahino they have the personnel to do exactly that.