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2 key battles that will decide the outcome of Hull v West Brom

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Hull City undoubtedly made a slow start to the season, but have now won three games in a row to propel themselves into the top half and onto the fringes of the play-off picture.

A very impressive 3-0 away win against Fulham at Craven Cottage last week will give Grant McCann and his side great belief that they have the potential to push for the promotion places in the coming months.

Unfortunately though, table-topping West Bromwich Albion visit the KCOM Stadium on tomorrow, so McCann requires an almost perfect performance from his players to keep the winning run going.

Here, we look at two battles in particular that the Hull boss will need his men to come out on top in, or the winning run could come to an abrupt end:

Jarrod Bowen v Jake Livermore

Jarrod Bowen has been the stand-out player for the Tigers this season.

The Hereford United academy graduate – who has unsurprisingly just been offered a new contract – has fired in nine goals and contributed two assists from attacking midfield, his dribbling ability and finishing prowess causing Championship defences no end of problems.

The responsibility of nullifying the dangerous threat of Bowen is likely to fall to Jake Livermore.

Whilst Romaine Sawyers has largely been taking the plaudits for a very impressive season, his central midfield partner Livermore has looked as fit and sharp as at any time over the last couple of years.

Whereas Sawyers’ wide range of passing is important to The Baggies’ attacking play, tackling isn’t his forte and is a much stronger part of Livermore’s game.

If the Enfield-born midfielder can limit the threat Bowen poses, the West Brom backline will be in for a much quieter afternoon.

Matt Phillips v Callum Elder

Baggies winger Matt Phillips has had a decent season, always offering a good attacking outlet down the right flank.

His customary strengths of dribbling and crossing have still been apparent, and his free-kicks always pose a threat. He will have a tough task up against Hull left back Callum Elder though.

The in-form Australian made the whoscored.com team of the week last week in the win at Fulham, and according to Australian football media outlet The World Game, is likely to be called up to the Australia squad for their upcoming World Cup Qualifier against Jordan.

He is prone to losses in concentration, however, a trait which was especially evident during his short loan spell at Ipswich Town last season.

Of course, if Elder is able to maintain both is concentration and form, Phillips is likely to have a tough afternoon and the Baggies will be a less dangerous side.

ScoopDragon Football News Network