Saturday, 29 August 2015

FanFeud Match Preview: Stoke v West Brom

A few years can feel like a lifetime in top-flight football.  It wasn't that long ago that Stoke were parking the bus and playing an unusual form of football, where as West Brom were playing in a promising way under future England manager Roy Hodgson.  Subsequent to that era, both clubs have seen changes in personnel with Hughes and Pulis taking interesting journeys along the way; the former starting a quiet "Stok-a-lona" revolution at the Brittania and the latter fighting fires in his own defensive way.

Neither Stoke or West Brom have made a sensational start to this season, with both clubs currently stuck in the bottom 6.  This fixture can potentially act as a kickstart for either.  It can be a story of Stoke showing early shoots of fruition with their re-worked style of football or it will be Pulis lifting the Baggies and getting one over his former club.  The transfer rumours involving Berahino will definitely be a hindrance to West Brom, but Rondon has the continental pedigree to fill the void up top.  As for Stoke, the star purchase of Shaqiri has been nothing short of sensational and he will be pivotal to their success in the months ahead.
On paper, this game is unlikely to be goalless as Stoke have scored at least a goal a game since early August, where as West Brom have conceded at least two goals per game.  I think both managers will try and somehow engineer their first league win of the season.  It's unlikely to be a goals fest, but I wouldn't be surprised if it finished 2-2 or if Stoke capitalised on their home advantage and nicked a 2-1 win to add further pressure to the Baggies.

With the above in mind, I would recommend the following FanFeud picks for this fixture:

  Xherdan Shaqiri
Mame Biram Diouf
Marko Arnautovic
Jose Salomon Rondon
James Morrison

Have you made your picks yet?