It's safe to say that following Saturday's unmitigated disaster at home to Watford, a win is very much needed considering how far we have slipped since the start of these four defeats on the bounce. Many fans have been calling on Rafa Benitez to replace Joselu with Aleksandar Mitrovic and it said a lot on Saturday when the biggest cheer of the day came when Joselu was subbed off for the Serbian striker. Luckily though, Mikel Merino, after starting on the bench against Watford, seems to be back from injury to try and improve the poor performances in midfield. I would assume he will replace Diame going into Tuesday's match at the Hawthorns.
Moving on to the history of this fixture, interestingly we had an abysmal record at West Brom before the 1970s, having only won at their place four times in our history, all of which by one goal. However, as recent history has it, West Brom have never scored more than one goal in a game against us in the past nine meetings.
Facts and Figures
West Brom wins: 47
Newcastle wins: 46
Newcastle wins: 11
West Brom wins: 4
Premier League at West Brom
Newcastle wins: 4
West Brom wins: 3
Previous ten (all competitions)
Newcastle wins: 5 (14 goals)
West Brom wins: 3 (10 goals)
Biggest win (in this fixture)
West Brom 1 - 5 Newcastle United (01/11/1989)
This clash at the Hawthorns came in the first few months of the season while the two teams were in the old Division two, Newcastle first season in that division since 1984 after a five year spell in the top flight came to an end the previous season. A valiant effort in the season saw us finish third however, despite that season taking place years before I was born, it feels sad to see that we lost to Sunderland in the play-offs.
Biggest defeat (in this fixture)
West Brom 6 - 0 Newcastle United (05/09/1960)
It was only last week that the West Brom board decided to part company with Tony Pulis. In my view, the sacking wasn't deserved. He guided the Baggies to a top half finish last season with a squad which, I think, consisted mainly of players able to avoid relegation at best and the same could be said for their squad so far this season. Pulis' impressive long term record of not experiencing a relegation though was not enough to convince the West Brom board of sticking with him. Since the job became vacant, Alan Pardew has been seen as the favourite by most but, should he be given the job before kick-off on Tuesday evening, Gary Megson will still be the one taking temporary charge of the game.
It goes without saying that November has not been a good month considering the last points we picked up came against Crystal Palace on 21st October. Since the fixtures were released in the summer, many saw our crunch time as being the matches in December. Understandably so as we go up against the previous two winners of the Premier League, Chelsea and Leicester along with clashes with Arsenal and Man City. Other matches which we must look to get points from include going up against a struggling Everton side who may or may not bring in a permanent manager by then. Away at troubled West Ham on the eve of Christmas Eve and we finish the calendar year off with Chris Hughton returning to St. James' Park with fellow newly promoted side, Brighton.