Welcome back to my West Bromwich Albion story. After my last post I couldn’t help diving straight back into the season. You may remember me signing a couple of good players and getting off to a great start. I finished August in second which set me up nicely for September. With so many talented strikers to choose from, I have found myself switching and changing the front men a lot. I thought it might be interesting to show you the goal tally of each striker at the end of my posts from now on. This should be interesting as I really do not know who will be my top goal scorer. Anyway back to the game.
I was to carry on my career away against Sheffield Utd. A very strong outfit who currently occupy 4th in the Championship. This match called for my 4-5-1, a tactic that has never failed me. Simon Cox seemed like my best choice as a lone striker. I was considering Lazovic but his lack of pace changed my mind. The usual counter strategy was used with a high defensive line. The game started very slow, both teams were struggling to put their mark on the match. This was until the 27 minute, when Simon Cox caught onto a great ball by Mulumbu. He slotted the ball home from close range (I’m starting to see your point Ravenie.) Sheffield Utd never threatened my goal, this was all down to some superb defending. My boys saw the game out and won 1-0. A great result away from home against some tough opposition.
My next game was at home to Plymouth. An easy match on paper but I wasn’t about to underestimate the mariners’. After reading through my assistants advice, I opted for a 4-5-1. The defensive line was set at deep with a slow tempo and wide width. Cox looked a little tired so I played Lazovic up front. He was accompanied by Kristensen in midfield who has started on the bench of late.
West Brom dominated the opening stages and took the lead early. Kristensen scored an amazing goal after 7 minutes. Rather than trying to explain it I’ll show you, see the image below. It was a NO WAY moment.
After pulling my jaw back up off the floor, I adjusted my strategy from counter to control. A thrashing was on the cards here and I wanted to take advantage. Sure enough my side kept the pressure on and were rewarded after 26 minutes. Tamas struck a curling shot from outside the box. 2-0 to West Brom along with all the possession. The first half ended on a high after Tamas scored his second. A well placed header from Kristensen’s corner. The second half saw Plymouth come back into the game a little. My side did not see much of the goal but Tamas capped off a great performance with his third goal. Plymouth scored near the end but nothing could over shadow this great performance.
My next opponents were Doncaster at the Hawthorns. After two fantastic results I couldn’t change my tactics. A few players were rested because of fitness, but Kristensen kept his place. I recalled Simon Cox as the lone striker and had high hopes for a strong performance.
My boys came out of the traps flying. Doncaster couldn’t handle Cox and conceded after just 8 minutes. After his initial shot was saved Cox made no mistakes with the rebound. West Brom were in control and cruising towards three points before half-time when my lone striker finished well again. His clinical finish wrapped up the game and saw a depleted Doncaster submit to defeat. I have to make a quick shout out to Ravenie who predicted Simon Cox would be my best striker. From what I have seen so far Cox is definitely my number one up front.
With my boys in excellent form I wanted the run to continue. My next destination was the Riverside stadium. Middlesborough are one of the Championships better sides, however their form has been awful of late. With Borolying mid-table I decided to use a 4-4-2 with Cox and Lazovic up front.
Although West Brom had the most shots on goal, Middlesborough dominated the game. I took this as a positive showing that my counter strategy was working. Boro could not break my back four and were left open to the quick attack. This proved to be the foundation for a great result. A goal at the end of each half was enough, my boys made me proud with a 2-0 victory. Tamas scored a penalty and Lazovic capped off his man of the match performance with a goal.
The next game was very frustrating, my opponents were Crystal Palace at home. Using my 4-5-1 with a control strategy WBA dominated the game. We had 23 shots to Crystal Palace’s 1 and 63% of the possession. Yet it wasn’t until my supersub Jara hit a screamer on the 89th minute that we scored. A very annoying game but I am just glad we gained all three points.
Ok we’re almost there guys so stay with me. My last game of the month was away to Barnsley, a side I really expect to beat comfortably. With a lot of games crammed into a short amount of time I had to make some changes. Most notably Andwele Slory was used as an inside forward on the right in my 4-5-1 formation. This was a game in which every player seemed to become one. The passing and organization in defence was superb while we were lethal going forward. Slory became the engine behind this victory scoring two great goals. Chris Brunt also scored a rare goal but Simon Cox seemed to be at the heart of every attack. This English forward was fast becoming a favourite at the Hawthorns. A well deserved 3-0 victory saw me finish the month with 6 wins from 6 games in the Championship.
With September coming to an end I can’t help but feel a little bit of pride. I have leaded my side to a perfect six out six. There are two results that I have not mentioned yet, these were in the League Cup. I don’t want to write about these games as my reserve side are been used to rest the first team players. After beating Southampton on penalties, Everton thrashed us 4-0 in the third round. I’m not too bothered as the Championship is my primary objective this year. Talking of the Championship my boys are flying. We are top of the pile by 8 points. An excellent start after only ten games. Cardiff and Newcastle seem to be the major under performers so far.
After so many great performances its hard to pin down my top players. Therefore I’ll let you choose. Below are the stats of all my squad members to date.
As promised here is the first instalment of my strikers stats. Simon Cox is ahead on goals, assists and average rating. None of my strikers have been exceptional in terms of their rating but that could be down to my squad rotation. The season is still young and I’m still not sure who will finish it as my number one forward. Cox and Lazovic seem to be in pole position but you never know.
Within my next post I will be reporting to you about October and November. There are no easy games within these two months but the teams I’ll face are not too challenging either. The difficulty of each match will depend on my opponents form. I just hope West Brom can keep up this incredible run of form.
Thank you for reading and please feel free to leave any questions in the comments below. I look forward to seeing you in my next post.