Preview: West Brom v Swansea

9th March 2013

The Swans will be looking to take a giant step towards a top ten finish when they face West Brom on Saturday (3pm).

Michael Laudrup's side head to the Hawthorns on the back of last weekend's win over Newcastle - a result which moved them on to 40 points for the season.

That win meant they leapfrogged West Brom into eighth place and seven points clear of Stoke in tenth position.

And if they could secure a win over Steve Clarke's men on Saturday it would go a long to way to cementing a place in the top half of the Premier League.

However, they face a tough test against an Albion side that have notched up eight wins at home so far in an impressive campaign.

The Baggies have been one of the surprise packages, flirting with the top four in the first half of the season before dropping off slightly in recent times.

But they have the third best home record in the top flight this term and will be looking to get their first points against Swansea since the Welsh side won promotion two years ago.

The Swans did the double over Albion last year, including a 2-1 win at the Hawthorns, and produced a dazzling display to grab all three points at the Liberty Stadium back in November.

Team news

Michael Laudrup has no fresh injury concerns ahead of the trip, with Kemy Agustien and Neil Taylor being the only notable absentees.

Meanwhile, West Brom welcome back Chris Brunt after injury while Shane Long is struggling to shake off an ankle problem.

What they said

West Brom boss Steve Clarke: "They (Swansea) are a good side. You look at their name, and the fact this is their second season in the division, and people can think 'it's only Swansea'. 

"But that's wrong. They are a really good team with really good players. 

"They have a way of playing that has developed over the last four or five years with a lot of the same players still there, and there are some really good additions this year, so they are a team to be respected."

Swans boss Michael Laudrup:"It is a game between two of the surprise packages of the season. Both teams are seven points clear of tenth place, and that is really positive.

"They (West Brom) have done brilliantly this season, especially at home and they have a lot of talent and speed. We always like to have the ball but they are very good on the counter attack so we have to be careful.

"But we have to go there and play the way we always do and look to get a positive result."


Head to head

The Swans have won all three of their games against West Brom since arriving in the Premier League, including a 3-1 win at the Liberty Stadium back in November.

In the corresponding fixture last season, the visitors claimed a 2-1 win at the Hawthorns after falling behind.


West Brom stats

Only Manchester United (13) and Manchester City (10) have won more Premier League home games than WBA this season

Only United (2) have drawn fewer Premier League games than WBA (4) this season

32% of the goals West Brom have conceded have come in the closing 15 minutes, the highest proportion in the league


Swansea stats

Swansea have scored only 12 goals in 14 Premier League away games this season

Michael Laudrup's team have failed to score in six of their last seven Premier League away games

The Swans have thrown away only two points from winning positions this season, fewer than any other side


32Red odds: West Brom 13/9 Swansea 21/10 Draw 23/10