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Dec 11, 2021 at 3pm UK
West BromWest Bromwich Albion
Robinson (62')
Robinson (63')
FT(HT: 0-0)

Halilovic (34'), Tetek (66')

Preview: West Bromwich Albion vs. Reading - prediction, team news, lineups

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

West Bromwich Albion will be looking for consecutive wins for the first time since the end of September when they host Reading at the Hawthorns on Saturday.

The Baggies are currently third in the Championship table while the Royals – who were deducted six points last month – are 20th.

Match preview

West Brom won for the first time in five matches as they claimed a 2-1 victory over playoff rivals Coventry City last weekend.

It was the first time in seven games in which Valerien Ismael's side had scored more than once in a match (although one was an own goal) and moved them to within six points of the Championship top two.

After the win, Ismael proclaimed that his side were "back on track" and they will now hope to build some momentum with fixtures against Barnsley and Derby County to come after this weekend.

Albion are the only Championship team yet to lose at home this season, while they have the joint-best defence in the division having conceded just 17 goals.

The Baggies are unbeaten in their last four games against Reading and won 2-1 in their last meeting in February 2020.

The Royals currently sit five points above the relegation zone, but have lost only one of their last five matches.

Veljko Paunovic's side have also won back-to-back away matches for the first time this season. The club have not won three games in a row on the road since September 2015.

Last weekend, Reading halted Hull City's four-match winning run as they drew 1-1 against the Tigers and had two late penalty shouts waved away.

However, the Berkshire outfit have the third-worst defence in the Championship this season behind Peterborough United and Cardiff City and have not kept a clean sheet since mid-October.

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

Reading Championship form:
  • L
  • W
  • D
  • L
  • W
  • D

Team News

West Brom midfield pair Jake Livermore and Jayson Molumby will both return from suspension for Saturday's game, meaning Taylor Gardner-Hickman is likely to drop out of the side.

Matt Phillips missed the win over Coventry last weekend with a hamstring problem and is unlikely to be available.

Kean Bryan, Kenneth Zohore and Dara O'Shea all have long-term injury issues and will not feature until at least early in the new year.

Reading defender Andy Yiadom was taken off at half-time against Hull last weekend with a soft tissue injury, but Veljko Paunovic said after the game that he could still be available for the trip to The Hawthorns.

If the Ghanaian international is not fit, Dejan Tetek should fill in at right-back in what could be Paunovic's only change.

Liam Moore and Junior Hoilett are back in training so may be included in the matchday squad, while Ovie Ejaria is also nearing a return.

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

Reading possible starting lineup:
Southwood; Yiadom, Holmes, Dann, Rahman; Laurent; Halilovic, Drinkwater, Swift, Dele-Bashiru; Carroll

We say: West Bromwich Albion 1-0 Reading

West Brom's win over Coventry should be a huge confidence boost for Albion and with an unbeaten home record to protect, we think that they will get all three points on Saturday. It is likely to be a tight game though, with Reading showing recent signs of improvement.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting under 3.5 goals 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.Under 3.5:data

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