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Jan 26, 2022 at 8pm UK at The Hawthorns
West Brom
0 - 2

Furlong (49'), Townsend (78')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Riis Jakobsen (41'), Archer (76')
Whiteman (48'), Riis Jakobsen (52'), Evans (69'), Maguire (90+4')

Preview: West Bromwich Albion vs. Preston North End - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: West Bromwich Albion vs. Preston North End - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Wednesday's Championship clash between West Bromwich Albion and Preston North End, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

West Bromwich Albion play host to Preston North End on Wednesday evening with the opportunity to strengthen their position in the Championship playoffs.

Meanwhile, Preston make the trip to The Hawthorns on a three-match winless streak, the visitors now sitting in 15th place in the standings.

Match preview

Although West Brom have spent much of the campaign in the top six, Valerien Ismael found himself under increasing pressure ahead of last weekend's home fixture against Peterborough United.

However, the Baggies were able to end a five-match winless streak in all competitions, scoring three goals in the final 12 minutes to claim an important three points in their quest for promotion.

While West Brom still only occupy fifth position, it was a much-needed step in the right direction, and they are now just four points adrift of second-placed Bournemouth.

With Fulham having surged clear of the chasing pack, runners-up is the most realistic target, and Ismael will feel that it is achievable if his frontmen can find some consistency.

Daryl Dike is still taking time to settle since his return to English football, but Karlan Grant netted his first goal since December 4 against Posh.

Opponents Preston have marginally improved since the appointment of Ryan Lowe, who has collected eight points from his five Championship games.

However, North End have now failed to win in four fixtures, Lowe's side going down by a 1-0 scoreline at Swansea City on Saturday afternoon.

Despite their two-goal comeback with 10 men against Sheffield United still being fresh in the memory, Lowe is aware that they can ill-afford more games without success if they want to make a late challenge for the playoffs.

On a more positive note, Aston Villa youngster Cameron Archer has arrived on loan, a transfer which has the potential to be one of the best in the second tier during the January window.

West Bromwich Albion Championship form:
  • W
  • D
  • L
  • D
  • L
  • W

West Bromwich Albion form (all competitions):
  • D
  • L
  • D
  • L
  • L
  • W

Preston North End Championship form:
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • D
  • D
  • L

Preston North End form (all competitions):
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • D
  • D
  • L

Team News

West Brom are able to call upon goalkeeper Sam Johnstone and midfielder Alex Mowatt after they both completed their respective bans.

While Johnstone is a certain starter, Mowatt is competing with Adam Reach for a position in the middle of the pitch.

With Dike having suffered a hamstring injury and Matt Phillips having failed to make an impact against Peterborough, Grady Diangana and Callum Robinson could earn recalls.

Preston's Matthew Olosunde may get the nod at right wing-back after Tim Barkhuizen was forced off during the first half at Swansea.

With Andrew Hughes returning from suspension, Greg Cunningham could move to left wing-back, while Archer is in contention for an immediate debut in attack.

West Bromwich Albion possible starting lineup:
Johnstone; Kipre, Bartley, Clarke; Furlong, Livermore, Mowatt, Townsend; Grant, Robinson, Diangana

Preston North End possible starting lineup:
Iversen; Van den Berg, Bauer, Hughes; Olosunde, Whiteman, Browne, Cunningham; Johnson; Riis Jakobsen, Evans

We say: West Bromwich Albion 2-1 Preston North End

Given their position in the table, Preston may feel that they can throw caution to the wind at The Hawthorns. Nevertheless, we still feel that the Baggies will do just enough to claim all three points, potentially edging a close game by the odd goal in three.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting a home win in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Home Win:data

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Championship Table
3Huddersfield TownHuddersfield4623131064471782
4Nottingham ForestNott'm Forest4623111273403380
5Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd4621121363451875
6Luton TownLuton462112136355875
8Blackburn RoversBlackburn461912155950969
10West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom461813155245767
11Queens Park RangersQPR46199186059166
12Coventry CityCoventry461713166059164
13Preston North EndPreston461616145256-464
14Stoke CityStoke461711185752562
15Swansea CitySwansea461613175868-1061
17Bristol City461510216277-1555
18Cardiff CityCardiff46158235068-1853
19Hull City46149234154-1351
20Birmingham CityBirmingham461114215075-2547
RPeterborough UnitedPeterborough46910274387-4437
RDerby CountyDerby461413194553-834
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