• New Season Eve!

    With the summer (yeah right) break over, time for me to put virtual pen to paper once more. I never bothered with a write up of the anticlimactic Bristol City game, the unfortunate 2-0 defeat, away to David Stockdale’s Norwich, nor the rather apt last second cancellation of the title celebrations at Villa.

    As such, I re-join you, off the back of the triumphant report of THE Wigan game, and subsequent jubilant scenes. Those are the moments to embrace, as we head full of hope, into another historic season. Its New Season Eve folks, the day every fan of every club in the land, is filled with fresh hope, for the campaign ahead (even Sunderland fans will be kidding themselves this will be a good one).

    For those of us of an Albion persuasion though, starting our first top flight season in 35, that hope is mixed with a degree of trepidation. When your star player is quoted in broadsheet headlines hoping to ‘not be embarrassed’ the reality is writ large. Since the fixture list bestowed on us an opening day visit of Pep Guardiola’s Galacticos, it has been hard to avoid the size of the task ahead. Albion legend Mark Lawrenson’s prediction of a narrow defeat one of the kinder assessments in the build up.

    There was a fair degree of realism amongst the realistic Albion fans, on this site amongst others, over the summer. The mood lifted significantly though, over a positive pre-season, with several new signings showing up well – the clever Pascal Groß and tricky Chelsea loanee Izzy Brown, chief amongst them. Then further still, this week, with the club smashing its transfer record, for Netherlands International midfielder Davy Prӧpper from PSV, and Colombian International attacker Jose Izquierdo from Club Brugge. I don’t pretend to know much about the latter, but my word his highlights reels look exciting!

    Above anything, he looks lightning quick. Pace is something the Albion will absolutely need, to prosper in a league where they’ll often be relying on quick breaks, when the opposition dominate possession. With Izquierdo and Brown now added to Knockaert and March, the pace cupboard is much better stocked. The new arrivals have so raised hopes, some have even floated the idea of bets on a top 10 finish. Not sure I’m quite that bullish, but the odds do look generous. If you like to get involved in such things, you can sign up for a bet365 free bet.

    However Saturday turns out, I’m determined to enjoy it – and to embrace that hope and excitement for games to come. Its New Season Eve everybody!

    One. More. Sleep.