Bilic makes 5 changes, Grant debuts & key man axed: Predicted West Brom XI vs Burnley – opinion

West Bromwich Albion are finally back in Premier League action this evening as they welcome fellow strugglers Burnley to the Hawthorns.

The Baggies have picked up just one solitary point from their opening four matches, so it’s not been a great start to life in the big time just yet.

It means Slaven Bilic has plenty to think about in terms of team selection – just who should he start? How does he turn things around?

Here’s the lineup we think the Croatian could select later tonight…


There could be as many as five changes to the side that lost 2-0 to Southampton last time out.

Before the weekend, Albion possessed the joint-worst defensive record across England’s top four professional leagues, so surely there will be some alterations afoot defensively?

Sam Johnstone will surely remain between the sticks being Bilic’s first-choice goalkeeper but a new-look back four could be named.

The Baggies boss is able to call upon veteran left-back Kieran Gibbs once again having served a lengthy suspension. It means Darnell Furlong could be welcomed back on the other flank too as Bilic clearly likes the balance those two bring together.

In the Englishman’s absence, Dara O’Shea has played on the right. He could move centrally instead with Semi Ajayi making way.

Skipper Jake Livermore is probably the undroppable name in the middle, playing as an anchorman here this evening, but the same can’t be said for Romaine Sawyers, who looks a little out of his depth in the top-flight – despite starting every league game this season, he could be axed.

Bilic could look to loan star Filip Krovinovic to make his second debut for the club whilst fellow temporary arrival Conor Gallagher is surely due to start now he’s fit and available again.

Both Grady Diangana and Matheus Pereira, arguably the two players of the promotion season, keep their place amongst the starting XI with another new signing making his debut in attack.

Signed on the eve of the domestic transfer deadline for £15m, Karlan Grant will surely be thrown straight into the deep end given Kenneth Zohore’s exit, the uncertainty over Callum Robinson and Hal Robson-Kanu’s injury. It’ll be one massive call but he simply has no other option.

It means the likes of Kyle Edwards, Conor Townsend, Sam Field, Rekeem Harper and Branislav Ivanovic all have to settle for a spot on the bench.

AND in other news, West Brom missed out on a MAJOR defensive upgrade in £20m “WARRIOR”…

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