Preview: West Brom v Swans

13th March 2019
First team

Swansea City will look to build on an encouraging performance at Norwich and end their losing streak away from home when they face West Brom at The Hawthorns (8pm).

Manager Graham Potter described the display in the 1-0 loss at Carrow Road last weekend as one his side could be proud of, and there were plenty of positives about a first-half in which they dictated terms against the Championship leaders.

Nevertheless, Emi Buendia's strike made it four defeats in a row away from home, and the task does not get any easier with West Brom themselves firmly in the promotion mix, despite parting company with manager Darren Moore following their draw with Ipswich.

The temptation is often to view a game against a side with a caretaker manager at the helm as coming at a good time, but the Swans will be aware of the threats posed by the likes of Dwight Gayle and Jay Rodriguez in a Baggies side showing no shortage of top-flight experience in spite of their second-tier status.

Claiming victory in the west Midlands will be no easy task but a look at West Brom's recent home record provides some reasons for optimism.

They have not won any of their last six at home, and have won just once in nine league games at The Hawthorns, a sequence interim boss James Shan will be desperate to bring to an end before a new manager takes the helm.

Swansea are eight points adrift of the play-off places but if they can pick up three points here it might just give the pundits some food for thought and would give confidence to a Swans wide that has taken just nine points from a possible 33 against the top seven so far this season.

Team news

Swansea City will again have to do without the services of topscorer Oli McBurnie against the Baggies. The striker sat out the loss at Norwich following his latest bout of illness and he has not recovered in time for this midweek fixture.

Leroy Fer and Joe Rodon are expected back after the international break from their respective hamstring and foot injuries, while midfielder George Byers is being assessed after feeling some tightness in his groin.

Martin Olsson is on the long-term absentees' list having ruptured his Achilles back in December.

Pre-match views

Graham Potter: "We absolutely want to build on the performance against Norwich, I think we did a lot of things well and I was pleased with the performance level.

"We did not get the result but there were a lot of things that we felt were positive about our performance.

"Of course you cannot just pick up from where you left off, you have to start again against a team in the top six who are going for promotion."

Mike van der Hoorn: “We have plenty to play for this season. This is the second game of a big week for us, and it’s something we must relish," said the Dutch defender.

“We have to show up and do our thing. Against Norwich we just didn’t have the finishing touch, so we can do good things if can add that to our game on Wednesday."

James Shan: “We’ve got 30 points to play for, promotion is very much our target. I wouldn’t for one bit think the players will be distracted, it’s the industry that we’re in, these things happen. We have to focus on getting three points against Swansea.

“The key is that some of the players have been through the process three times in the last 18 months.

“We’re accustomed to it, they’re ultra-professional. That will kick in, and it will be business as usual."

Remember the last time?

You don't have to go back very far to recall the Swans' last trip to The Hawthorns given it was as recent as last season.

Last April the two clubs - both involved in battles for top-flight survival they would eventually lose - met in what was Darren Moore's first game in charge of the Baggies.

They had the better chances against Carlos Carvalhal's side, with Lukasz Fabianski saving well from Jay Rodriguez and Chris Brunt.

Fabianski was eventually beaten when Rodriguez got on the end of a Salomon Rondon's flick-on to open the scoring.

But the Swans rescued a point when Tammy Abraham emphatically headed home Sam Clucas' corner.

Prime numbers

17 - This will be Swansea City's seventh Championship game of the season where Oli McBurnie has been unavailable to start. They have won just one - 17 per cent - of the previous six.

250 - Wayne Routledge will make his 250th appearance for Swansea City should he feature at The Hawthorns.

This game is available on SwansTV LIVE across the globe, including the United Kingdom and Ireland.

To watch the game you can sign up HERE for £10.

The broadcast will start at approximately 7.30pm with a pre-match show featuring Sioned Dafydd and Lee Trundle. The live stream will be a multi-camera operation with full commentary from Wyndham Evans and Anthony O'Connell. The production will also include multiple replays as well as a pre-match, half-time and post-match show.

Live audio is also available to all our fans globally and you can sign up to listen HERE.