West Brom vs Nottingham Forest preview

Friday, February 14th, 2020 12:39pm

By Ali McDowall

The Baggies aim to go nine points clear at the top of the Championship when they welcome Forest to the Hawthorns in Saturday’s early kick-off. 

The West Midlands club sit top of the Championship table, six points clear of the chasing pack and with momentum behind them will look to continue their promotion push.

They face a tough test from fellow promotion contenders Nottingham Forest who currently sit fifth in the standings but are struggling for form as of late. 

Slaven Bilić's men are gunning for the Premier League; they are the division’s highest scorers with 57 goals and have only been defeated four times this term- suffering four fewer losses than any other side. 

West Brom have won three on the bounce and with the likes of Leeds and Fulham stuttering under pressure, they are in a prime position to make certain a return to the topflight. 

DAVID PRUTTON'S PREVIEW: WEST BROM VS NOTTINGHAM FOREST

On the other hand, Sabri Lamouchi’s side have won only twice in their last five outings and will look to get back to winning ways quickly. 

Albeit those victories came against promotion-chasers Leeds and Brentford, the Reds also squandered the opportunity to move into the automatic promotion places following a 1-0 defeat to struggling Charlton. 

Although making a trip to the league leaders is a daunting task, Forest haven’t actually lost on any of their last three visits to the Hawthorns - with their most recent visit ending in a 2-2 draw in February. 

Meanwhile, West Brom have only lost once in their last five meetings with Forest and have beaten the Reds at the City Ground earlier this season. 

Both teams are entering a vital run of fixtures in the race for promotion, and it will be fascinating to see how they manage the pressure in this enticing fixture that will alter the landscape at the top end of the table. 

Team News

West Brom

The Baggies are expected to start with the same lineup that beat Reading midweek, with Grady Diangana and Kieran Gibbs the only absentees - even though the latter has returned to training​.

The fact that Matt Phillips, Kamil Grosicki and Charlie Austin all came off the bench against the Royals is an indication of West Brom's strength in depth.

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Nottingham Forest

Meanwhile, Forest are just without Tendayi Darikwa, and will undoubtedly go for a full-strength side for this pivotal top of the table clash.

Yuri Ribeiro, Samba Sow, Sammy Ameobi and Lewis Grabban were all left out against Charlton but should feature here, while Matty Cash is also expected to return to the starting XI.

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