After experiencing a tumultuous 2020/21 campaign in the Premier League which culminated in relegation earlier this year, West Bromwich Albion have managed to make an encouraging start to the new term.
Under the guidance of manager Valerien Ismael, the Baggies have managed to pick up 13 points from their opening five league games.
Before the international break, West Brom sealed a dramatic victory over Peterborough United.
With the game seemingly drifting towards a stalemate, centre-back Semi Ajayi netted a dramatic winner in stoppage-time which sparked wild scenes at the Weston Homes Stadium amongst the travelling supporters.
Despite featuring on 33 occasions in the Premier League for West Brom last season, Ajayi started the current campaign as a back-up for the likes of Matt Clarke and Dara O’Shea.
However, with Clarke currently being forced to watch on from the sidelines due to injury, Ajayi may be given the opportunity to showcase his talent in the club’s upcoming fixtures by Ismael.
Having helped West Brom achieve promotion to the Premier League during the 2019/20 season by playing 43 games in the Championship, the 27-year-old clearly knows exactly what it takes to thrive at this level.
Making reference to the club’s target for the current campaign, Ajayi has insisted that the Baggies are looking to seal an immediate return to the Premier League in 2022.
Speaking to the Express & Star, the defender said: “Everyone is hungry to do well and show last season was a blip.”
“We want to get ourselves back in the Premier League.
“We have got a very, very, long way to go.
“We are taking things one game at a time.
“But we are pleased with our start.”
GIVEMESPORT’s Joshua Cole says…
Although it is important to not get too carried away at this stage of the season, West Brom have already managed to produce some spirited displays in the Championship.
If the Baggies are to achieve a relative amount of success at this level in the coming months, they will need their defenders to step up to the mark.
Having recently recorded an impressive WhoScored match rating of 8.03 against Peterborough, Ajayi will now be looking to establish himself as a regular in Ismael’s starting eleven.
Providing that the Nigeria international is able to deliver the goods on a consistent basis for the Baggies, he could potentially play a key role in helping his side launch a sustained push for automatic promotion.
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