James Shan will remain in charge as caretaker manager as West Bromwich Albion travel to Griffin Park. Shan is targeting two wins from two against 14th-placed Brentford following Albion’s midweek triumph against Swansea City. But this is no easy away day with the Bees having won their last five league games at Griffin Park, seven in all competitions.
James Shan Still in Charge at West Bromwich Albion
Caretaker manager James Shan will remain at the helm this weekend and into the international break. Finding a replacement for ousted boss Darren Moore is taking longer than initially anticipated with West Brom choosing to weigh up their options.
Chief Executive Mark Jenkins arrived back from China on Tuesday following talks with owner Guochuan Lai. The West Bromwich Albion hierarchy wants longer to decide whether to hire someone until the summer or find a more permanent solution. The Baggies decision makers must land on a position during the international break with just eight games remaining.
Shan joined West Brom in 2006 as under-7’s coach and has found himself at the centre of a media storm surrounding Moore’s dismissal last week. Now with Albion rooted firmly in the playoff positions, he just needs to hold the fort for a while longer. Victory against Swansea at The Hawthorns in midweek relieves some of the pressure on the Baggies and on Shan himself.
West Bromwich Albion head to Griffin Park with an opportunity to close the gap on the pack above. Second-placed Leeds United face third-placed Sheffield United in the early kickoff on Saturday, something’s got to give. Leaving Albion with an opportunity to close the nine-point gap on the automatic promotion places.
Brentford have been strong at home recently, they have the fourth-best home record in the league. However, they do struggle against the sides at the top. Four of the top seven have visited Griffin Park so far this season with Brentford failing to beat any of them, drawing one. In fact, Brentford have struggled against the top seven full stop, winning just one of 11 meetings this season.
The Baggies will be buoyed by their 3-0 victory in midweek against Swansea City. The scoreline somewhat flattered West Brom but they managed to put the game to bed, a trait they had struggled with at home in recent months.
Sam Johnstone made a string of impressive saves to claim a 10th clean sheet of the season as his goal led a charmed life. Albion stalwart Chris Brunt also had an impressive showing upon his return to the squad, bagging his 47th goal for West Brom to set the Baggies on their way.
They head to Griffin Park having won eight of their last 10 away from home, scoring 19 goals in that period. At this stage of the season, it appears that barring a miracle or a disaster, West Brom will be in the playoffs. But a win against Brentford and the right man through the door might just ask questions of the top two.
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