2010/2011 Premier League Preview: West Brom

West Brom will yet again try their luck in the Premier League and will be hoping to finally cement their place in the top flight.

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West Bromwich Albion/Sunderland Premiership 25.04.09 Photo: Tim Parker Fotosports International Graham Dorrans W.B.A. 2008/09
Manager: Roberto Di Matteo
Position Last Season: 2nd in Championship
Transfers In: Pablo Ibanez, Gabriel Tamas, Steven Reid, Boaz Myhill, Nicky Shorey
Transfers  Out: Andwele Slory, Robert Koren, Filipe Teixeira, Jonathan Greening, Borja Valero
West Brom have once again been promoted to England’s top flight, this time under new manager Roberto Di Matteo, who will be desperate to stay there. The team have been relegated from the Premier League three times in the last eight years and along with Blackpool, are once again favourites with the bookmakers to go straight back down.

West Brom’s attacking style of play is too good for the Championship, hence the team’s promotion, but it could once again haunt them against some of the top club’s in the country. Their vulnerability at the back has led to them only taking 5 points from a possible 96 from their previous Premier League matches against Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool, a statistic which will need to be improved upon this season.

Roberto Di Matteo has brought in a total of five players so far in Nicky Shorey, Pablo Ibanez, Steven Reid, Boaz Myhill and Gabriel Tamas, and he has indicated that he would like a few more. Chariman Jeremy Peace is renowned for his reluctance to spend big though.

The team possess quality in the form of Graeme Dorrans and Chris Brunt, but are crying out for one or two more star players. A forward capable of 10-15 Premier League goals a season must be next on the list if the team have any hope of staying up. Di Matteo does not have Premier League experience as a manager, and it will be interesting to see whether he adapts the team’s style of play in order to fight for survival if he is unable to sign a new striker.

For a team that have won four promotions to the Premier League in such a short space of time, they must surely be looking to find a way of staying there. Unfortunately, it seems that the only way of doing this would be for the chairman to take a risk and invest a bit more cash.

Caughtoffside prediction: West Brom deserve to stay in the Premier League for a substantial amount of time, they are too good for the Championship, but it is hard to see them finishing above the bottom three without substantial investment.

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