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Hull v West Brom: Inside track on the Tigers

By Luke Hatfield | West Bromwich Albion | Published:

West Brom make the trip to Hull this weekend hoping to maintain their place atop the Championship table - get to know the Tigers here.

Hull City's Josh Magennis (centre) celebrates

We spoke with Jonty Colman, Digital football writer for HullLive, to get a proper look at Albion's opponents.

See what he had to say here...

How have Hull fared so far this season? Has it been better than expected?

The beauty of the Championship is that form and consistency matter so much.

If I had to answer this three games ago, I would’ve said a little bit disappointing, but after consecutive wins over Nottingham Forest, Derby County and Fulham, Hull City find themselves 11th and within three points of the play-offs.

Right now, that is a good position to be in and keeping that momentum throughout the campaign will be crucial in their chances of a good season.

There's been a fair bit of change over the summer, with Nigel Adkins departing and Grant McCann taking the reins. How has he handled life as Hull boss?

In short, very well.

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He has his own style of playing, one that the Tigers have had to adjust to.

Hull City manager Grant McCann gestures on the touchline

Having lost a few of the club’s star players in the summer including David Marshall and Fraizer Campbell, McCann has made the most of his squad as well as some smart and shrewd recruitment.

In recent weeks, he has taken it upon himself to help re-build the strained the relationship between the club and fans and it is something he is managing both on and off the pitch, although there is still a long way to go on that.

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What sort of football can we expect to see from Hull this weekend?

Entertaining, counter-attacking. Expect West Brom to dominate in position, but when the likes of Jarrod Bowen and Kamil Grosicki receive it in forward areas, that’s when the Baggies need to be wary.

Who are the big threats in this Hull side and why?

Bowen and Grosicki going forward, the former’s goal record speaks for itself after becoming the club’s fastest player to reach double figures for goals in a season for 15 years on Saturday.

At the back, Jordy de Wijs is having a stellar campaign after some struggles for consistency last season.

Hull City's Jarrod Bowen celebrates

Eric Lichaj and Jackson Irvine also add experience at this level.

Are there any injury worries at the KCOM?

City could have a fully fit squad this Saturday, depending on how Norbert Balogh recovers from the calf injury sustained against Forest a fortnight ago.

Josh Magennis will miss the game through suspension and if both are absent, it does leave McCann low in numbers in his forward line. However, that issue has not hampered them in their last two wins.

Hull City's Jarrod Bowen celebrates

What's your predicted XI for the clash?

(4-2-3-1) George Long; Eric Lichaj, Reece Burke, Jordy de Wijs, Callum Elder; Leonardo Da Silva Lopes, Jackson Irvine; Josh Bowler, Jon Toral, Kamil Grosicki; Jarrod Bowen

What have you made of West Brom from afar? Do you think they have what it takes to gain promotion to the Premier League?

Having only seen a few clips of West Brom and tracking their results, they are the one team that has struck me as a side looking certain to go up come May.

They always same to find a way of getting results and have a superb record of coming from behind in matches. Slaven Bilic is doing a splendid job as far as I can see.

Your match prediction?

A really tough one. City are in their best form this season and look capable of beating anyone.

Nottingham Forest's Lewis Grabban (right) and Hull City's Jordy de Wijs battle for the ball

West Brom though look set to provide the toughest challenge of the season and have a lot of quality. Both sides love a goal.

Tricky, but I’ll go for 2-2.

You can follow Jonty on Twitter here.

Luke Hatfield

By Luke Hatfield
Digital Sports Journalist - @LHatfield_Star

Digital Sports Journalist based in Wolverhampton working on the Express & Star and Shropshire Star.

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