Match Preview: West Bromwich Albion vs. Sheffield United

Last updated : 28 January 2010 By @blades_mad1889

west bromwich albion vs. sheffield united
Both the Blades and the Baggies strung out a 2-2 draw earlier in the season, but it came in dramatic circumstances. The scores went in level at half-time 0-0 with both sides equally dominating, but it was the visitors who put themselves ahead when Roman Bednar (54) headed the Baggies ahead.

That lead lasted just two minutes when a deep cross from Jamie Ward found the head of Ched Evans to score his second goal of the season. But Bednar (60) again put the visitors ahead when a hoofed ball from keeper Scott Carson disrupted the defence where the striker was able to fire home past Mark Bunn.

At 2-1, Jamie Ward saw his goal disallowed for offside, but the scores were level four minutes from time when David Cotterill converted his spot kick after Darius Henderson was hacked down in the box.

The Baggies made a last gasp escape in midweek when they drew 1-1 with Ipswich Town at Portman Road, but only just! Defender Jonas Olsson was booked as he unheeded Damion Delaney in box, forcing referee Mr. Attwell to award Town with a penalty - Grant Leadbitter (68 minutes) stepped up and sent Scott Carson the wrong way.

It looked as though the Blues were to claim an infamous victory against a West Brom side which have lost just once away from home this season; but dexterity was restored when Chris Brunt (90) fired home the leveller.

Baggies boss Roberto Di Matteo may see the return of former Middlesbrough winger James Morrison (heel) who is close to a return whilst Abdoulaye Meite is currently away on international duty with Ivory Coast in the African Cup of Nations. Former Sheffield Wednesday midfielder Chris Brunt and Jonas Olsson both have minor head wounds but should feature on Saturday; however Olsson picked up his fifth booking of the season at Portman Road and maybe suspended, Gianni Zuiverloon will cover if the Swedish defender is made unavailable.

The Hawthorns club are close to signing Dutch winger Andwélé Cedric Slory from Eredivise club Feyenood, should this deal be

one-to-watch; winger jerome thomas
signed and sealed before the weekend then he could make his debut against the Blades. Though Roman Bednar (bruised foot) who netted a brace at the Lane earlier this season is a major doubt and influential midfielder Graham Dorrans (hip) is out of action and was sent for a scan yesterday morning.

Possible Baggies Line-Up: Scott Carson, Gianni Zuiverloon, Marek Cech, Gabriel Tamas, Gonzalo Jara, Robert Koren, Chris Brunt, Jerome Thomas, Filipe Teixeira, Youssouf Mulumbu, Simon Cox

The Blades were in Coca-Cola Championship action in midweek as they entertained Reading at Bramall Lane, and found themselves in a play-off spot after their 3-0 victory over the Royals. Twelve minutes into the game United got off to a flying start when defender Jonathan Fortune chest the ball down before volleying into the top corner past Adam Federici before Richard Cresswell (42) headed home shortly before half-time following Jamie Ward's cross.

Before the Blades had doubled their lead it was squeaky bum time when the visitors were awarded with a penalty - Gylfi Sigurdsson stepped up to take it but Bunn guessed right to tent their hopes of a comeback. The win was sealed in the 85th minute when a free-kick was lofted into the box and bundled home at the far post by Captain Chris Morgan.

Blades boss Kevin Blackwell will be forced to make wholesale changers to his squad, in particular his back four with Marcel Seip (hamstring) out injured with Jonathan Fortune likely to cover in his absence. He will also be without midfielder Lee Williamson (hamstring) and left full-back Andy Taylor (groin) - James Harper and Jordan Stewart could take their places.

Winger Mark Yeates signed for the Bramall Lane club little over a week ago from Middlesbrough and played just five minutes against Reading, coming off as a very late second half substitute - he could make his full debut at the Hawthorns this weekend.

Possible Blades Line-Up: Mark Bunn, Kyle Walker, Chris Morgan, Jonathan Fortune, Jordan Stewart, Mark Yeates, Nick Montgomery, James Harper, Jamie Ward, Richard Cresswell, Ched Evans.

Blades-Mad Prediction: West Bromwich Albion 1-1 Sheffield United

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