West Brom vs Birmingham: Midlands expert gives honest Championship result prediction

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Journalist Luke Hatfield expects West Brom to enjoy Midlands bragging rites and beat Birmingham on Friday night.

Valerien Ismael's side are hoping to bounce back from suffering their first Championship defeat of the season at Stoke before the international break and know that top-spot is up for grabs.

The Baggies are one of just five second-tier teams unbeaten on their own patch this season and Hatfield is confident they'll get back to winning ways.

How have West Brom performed under Ismael?

It's been a solid start to Ismael's reign as Baggies manager, although his results have certainly proved more popular than his style of football.

Heading into their game with the Blues, West Brom have racked up 22 points, which is an average of two-per-game. Should that ratio continue for the remainder of the campaign, then they'll be playing Premier League football next season.

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ENTER GIVEAWAY

But West Brom have tasted victory just twice in their last six games and have been struggling to break teams down on home soil, notably drawing to Millwall and then rock-bottom Derby County.

They did beat QPR in their previous home match, but Ismael's side required a late Karlan Grant double to rescue the three points and turn the game around.

Birmingham are struggling at the wrong end of the Championship table and are therefore likely to provide a similar test to that of Millwall and Derby.

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However, this time, Hatfield has predicted West Brom to come away with the three points and return to the top of the standings.

What did Hatfield say?

He told GIVEMESPORT: "If you were asking me, I'd expect an Albion win, especially it being at the Hawthorns as well. It's a tough place for any side to go in the Championship."

What's expected to happen at the Hawthorns?

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Form, league position and generally the gap in quality between the two squads, everything here points towards a comfortable home victory.

As mentioned above, West Brom haven't been at their fluent best at the Hawthorns recently, but Birmingham make the short trip having collected just one point from a possible 15 available.

Lee Bowyer's men have found the net just once in that period and conceded 12 times, which makes the Baggies overwhelming favourites for the points.

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