West Brom could be all change upfront this summer in terms of who could play in attack for them going forward – although speaking to Birmingham Live, Steve Bruce could be prepared to show some faith to his current options.
The Baggies have had a torrid campaign for their standards, with the side disposing of one manager in their bid to try and get into the promotion spots in the Championship. They started the season well enough but a dip in form – and, most importantly, a lack of goals – led to them sliding down the division.
After a tumultuous end of 2021 and beginning of 2022, boss Valerien Ismael was relieved of his duties. In came Steve Bruce to fight the fire and after a slow start, the results began to get better. Now tenth, the play-offs are out of reach but they could at least now finish in the top half of the table.
West Brom quiz: Does the Hawthorns have a bigger or smaller capacity than these 20 stadiums?
The goals though have begun to flow again and that could be in part due to the arrival of Andy Carroll. The former Newcastle man though will not be staying at the Hawthorns beyond this season – and that means the Baggies could be on the hunt for new forwards in the offseason.
However, it looks like Steve Bruce could be prepared to show some faith in two members of their current forward line despite some of their misfortune in front of goal, as he told Birmingham Live: “One [Kenneth Zohore] we’ve paid £8million for and the other [Daryl Dike] £7million in January.
They’re both number nines. We’ve got to try to see if we can get a tune out of [Zohore] and, of course, Dike, who we paid a lot of money for in January and who, at this moment in time, is fit again.
“It’s a big summer for him.”
The latter of the two, Daryl Dike, hasn’t really had time to shine for West Brom yet. Joining the club in January, the expectations were high after nine goals in 13 starts for Barnsley during the last Championship season. However, he could manage only 84 minutes of action after his Baggies move before he was sidelined through injury.
It’s seen him miss the rest of the campaign – but if he can return to fitness and form next season, he could be a real handful. Zohore on the other hand has merely fallen out of favour with the side. His first season produced three goals in just 7.3 lots of 90 minutes but it has been downhill since then. He was shipped out to Millwall where he managed a similar return of two goals in ten starts and upon his return to the Hawthorns, he has played only twice.
However, it appears as though Bruce is prepared to try and get both Dike and the 28-year-old firing again next season.
Steve Bruce might not have been the popular choice when he initially arrived at West Brom, with many wanting what they deemed a more ‘exciting’ appointment of someone who they felt could get the club back into the Premier League. After a disappointing stint with Newcastle, Bruce wasn’t viewed as that.
However, you cannot discredit both the past work he has done in the second tier in getting a team out of the division and also in the work he has done so far with the Baggies. He inherited a side that was not in great shape and could not score never mind win.
Now, he has managed to get them firing again a bit more and has also got them winning games again. Granted, they aren’t back in the top six but it could be baby steps for the club and they’ll have a big offseason over the summer to try and sort themselves out.
Zohore and Dike have both scored goals in the Championship before and can score in this league again. If Bruce can get them both back in top form, then they may not need any investment in their frontline after all.