Valerien Ismael will take his West Bromwich Albion bow in-front of home fans today as the Baggies welcome Luton Town to The Hawthorns.
Ismael’s tenure at the Midlands club got off to a solid if unspectacular start last Friday night when he took his side to the south coast to face AFC Bournemouth and came away with a 2-2 draw.
There were perhaps one or two unexpected selections last week such as Cedric Kipre getting into the starting line-up ahead of Semi Ajayi, and of course Sam Johnstone sat out with his future still remaining uncertain.
However the England international doesn’t look like he will be getting a Premier League move this summer and with talks underway regarding a new contract, the 28-year-old has returned to the West Brom starting line-up today and will no doubt get a fantastic reception.
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There’s still no place for Ajayi in the squad though however Matt Clarke comes in for a debut in place of Cedric Kipre after moving from Brighton & Hove Albion in July.
📋 Team news is in at The Hawthorns.
We make two changes from our opening day clash at AFC Bournemouth, with Sam Johnstone and Matt Clarke both set to start.
Intouch Games Ltd | #WBA
— West Bromwich Albion (@WBA) August 14, 2021
And the only other change is an expected one with Johnstone coming in for David Button between the sticks, whilst Adam Reach could get a debut from the bench.
West Brom fans have been reacting to the line-up on social media and there is general happiness over who Ismael has selected.
What. A. Team 🔥🔥🔥 https://t.co/YLta2ReRdw
— James (@JamesDuffy97) August 14, 2021
Fire team that is. Tulloch on the bench aswell. 🔥🔥🔥 https://t.co/uRt6777f05
— jack (@JackBurford11) August 14, 2021
For me our strongest lineup https://t.co/RQNDl1Fj3V
— Seth (@SjcWBA) August 14, 2021
I'd have gone Phillips instead of Grant, but can't argue too much.
— Ben Silk (@TheMapReader) August 14, 2021
Good lineup but I can’t see why Ajayi misses out
— JustWBA (@JustWba) August 14, 2021
That’s some team😍
— 𝑫𝒂𝒏🗣 (@danwba_) August 14, 2021
— Wba Ollie (@WbaOllie) August 14, 2021
what’s Ajayi done wrong?
— Ashton (@Ashton14989380) August 14, 2021