Premier League Preview: Birmingham Vs West Brom

Premier league match time returns to St Andrews’ Ground when Birmingham host West Brom in match week 28, on Saturday, March 5, 2011.

This is a second leg game, with the first leg hosted on September 18, at The Hawthorns, by West Brom, having ended in a 3-1 victory to the hosts. Birmingham drew first blood when Jerome’s strike put them ahead on 15 minutes. The goal transpired when Dann latched onto a long free-kick from Larsson to head it for Jerome to do the rest, from point blank range. Thereafter, the first half was marked by several missed chances by West Brom, with Thomas, Odemwingie, Scharner and Tamas all guilty of scuffing scoring opportunities.

The sides went into the interval with the visitors leading 1-0. But Albion appeared to wake up after the break, when an own goal by Dann on 51 minutes brought them level at 1-1. The replacement of Fortune by Dorrans paid immediate dividend for Albion when Dorrans pass to Thomas set off a chain of events culminating in Odemwingie’s back-heeled shot deflecting off Dann into the Birmingham goal. Eight minutes later, they took the lead through Odemwingie, and when Olsson scored Albion’s third nine minutes after the hour, it was all over for Birmingham.

This was West Brom’s second come-from-behind fightback in as many weeks, after a draw against Tottenham, on the previous occasion.

Head to head, Birmingham have established a 9-6 advantage over Albion in the last 20 league games between the sides, with the remaining 5 games drawn.

Of their last 10 league games, Birmingham have won 3 and lost 4 while having drawn the remaining 4; West Brom have won just 1 of their last 10, while having lost 6 and drawn 3. In 14 home games, this season, Birmingham have registered 4 wins, 3 losses and 7 draws. In 14 games on the road, Albion have ended on the winning side on 2 occasions, while having lost 9 and drawn 3.

In their latest game, Birmingham are coming off a 2-0 loss at home to Newcastle, while West Brom are fresh off a 1-1 draw away at Stoke.

On current form, Birmingham have a slight edge on the back of home advantage.

Birmingham ad the following players in their starting eleven against Newcastle: Foster, Carr, Johnson, Jirnaek, Ridgewell, Larsson, Fergusson, Gardner, Bentley, Martins and Zigic. Murphy, Phillips and Jerome featured as substitutes.

Wes Brom’s starting eleven against Stoke comprised: Carson, Reid, Meite, Olsson, Shorey, Brunt, Scharner, Dorrans, Mulumbu, Thomas, and Fortune. Vela, Tchoyi and Odemwingie were used as substitutes.

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