The phrase West Brom and 100 percent record is not one that you see used that often but it perfectly valid for this preview as Tony Pulis’ men have won both their opening two fixtures of this Premier League season and they will look to continue that streak this afternoon.
This early afternoon kick off at The Hawthorns has the interesting sub plot of Tony Pulis going up against one his former employers in the shape of Stoke City. They may not have a 100 percent record to protect but they will come here with some momentum.
That is because they make the short trip to West Bromwich of the back of a 1-0 home win over Arsenal last weekend. In terms of the script it could not have been written any better as debutant Jese scored the winning goal on his debut after signing from PSG on loan for the season. I guess it was a case of Jese, breaking bad defences.
West Brom added to the 1-0 home win over Bournemouth on the opening weekend of the season with the same scoreline at Turf Moor last Saturday. It was something of a bitter sweet afternoon for Welsh international Hal-Robson Kanu who scored the winning goal and then minutes later got himself sent off for an errant elbow.
He will miss the game through suspension but one player who could be making his debut is that of Oliver Burke after the former Nottingham Forest winger was signed from last season’s Bundesliga runners up RB Leipzig, it seems as if the lure of Champions League football was not strong enough to keep him in Germany.
Stoke switched to a back three last weekend and the change paid dividends for Mark Hughes as he masterminded another win over Arsenal. The team came in for some criticism after their opening weekend defeat at Everton and that would have not alleviated the pressure that has been on the former Wales boss over the summer.
That pressure would have been undoubtedly lessened with victory over The Gunners last weekend and the win set out something of a statement to say that their season starts now. That is all very well but they need to make sure that particular result was not an early flash in the pan.
As for the outcome this afternoon, West Brom will go into this game as favourites in what by and large is not a particularly high scoring game. I’ll go for Tony Pulis to get one over his former club. Home win and the 100 percent record continues.