With both managers having spent spells at each others respected sides, I expect a tight game, although the Chelsea team has made the biggest changes in clientele in the 4 years since Steve Clarke left Stamford Bridge, not too much has changed squad-wise, in the 13 months since Roberto Di Matteo was sacked from his management role at the Hawthorns.
Although the managers will have a large amount of respect for each other, having played together for a number of years at Chelsea FC, both managers will not be looking at this game as an easy win.
West Brom have been doing very well this season under Clarke´s guidance, dropping only 2 points at home all season, and after winning their first away game last weekend at Wigan, the team have already showed they mean business.
Chelsea on the other hand have struggled to hang onto leads in their past two games, drawing them both 1-1 after being 1-0 up for most of the game, but those score-lines were not justified as Chelsea dominated most of both of those games and will feel robbed of wins by two late goals.
That leads me on to my prediction, of a 2-1 chelsea win. I firmly expect a tight affair, but with the sheer class of Chelsea´s attacking threat to be too much to handle.
With the expected return of Ashley Cole, and the injuries sustained by Frank Lampard and John Terry, also the unavailability of Lukaku as the player cannot play against his parent club, here are my predicted line-ups:
West Brom- Myhill, Jones, McAuley, Olsson, Ridgewell; Morrison, Gera, Yacob, Mulumbu, Brunt, Long
Chelsea- Cech, Cole, Cahill, Ivanovic, Azpilicueta, Ramires, Mikel, Oscar, Mata, Hazard, Torres
This will be a good game for both sides to show whether they mean business this season……