Opposing View: West Brom
Vital West Bromwich Albion editor, Baggy Boy, joins us today to help preview Saturday`s clash at the Stadium of Light. Remember to check Vital WBA to see my answers to Baggy Boy`s questions...
Hopes, fears & expectations for the season?
Hopes were that Clarke would be able to come in, stabilise on what Hodgson had achieved without slipping too much in the league. Fears were he wouldn't be able to.
Thankfully on all fronts he couldn't have started better really, he hasn't changed too much defensively which was Hodgson's biggest change for us, and he's made us a touch more entertaining going forward, and slightly more open in attack.
Expectations now are anybody`s guess, some are talking Europe, others would simply be happy with an improvement in final league standings.
Nobody expected the start we have had though.Was Steve Clarke a popular choice for boss?
Many were rightly concerned given he was coming into the job, let alone the club, fresh but there were plenty who - whilst not expecting him to gel so quickly - knew he had a very good coaching background so were quite excited to see how he would do given the chance.
Thankfully it's worked out very well for all concerned so far.How big a loss will Dan Ashworth prove to be when he does leave?
I don't think it'll be as big a loss as we probably imagine, the fact we've so long to find a replacement means plenty of research can be done to find the best fit for a replacement, and also then it slows plenty of time for Dan to pass on his knowledge, plans, future thoughts so the new guy is perfectly prepped.
But it will be a loss though, simply because of how involved he has always been in the role he plays.One WBA player you'd drive to his next club & why?
There's not a single one at the minute, everybody is playing their part in the league when called on, and it gives us plenty of options to try different things as the strength of the opposition changes.One Sunderland player you'd poach & why?
Larsson, fantastic footballer and great eye for a pass. I think he'd slot right in to our midfield.Who will be the key man on Saturday?
Romelu Lukaku, already had a huge impact since joining on loan, and with Chelsea breaking from Di Matteo, I'm sure he'll also be thinking about the chance to further grow his name with us with a new boss coming in.Any injuries or suspensions to worry about?
The main one for us at the moment is Ben Foster, but Boaz Myhill has stepped in more than admirably. I don't believe we'll have anybody else unexpectedly out.Match prediction?
If this isn't a 1-1 draw, I fancy us to nick it looking at your form at the moment.
Cheers Baggy Boy.