BBC Sport pundit Mark Lawrenson expects West Brom to be competitive but predicts the Baggies only to pick up a point against Wolves.

The rivals take on each other on Monday evening in the first Black Country derby at the Hawthorns for nine years.

West Brom look to be fighting a losing battle against relegation – having lost 3-0 to Leicester and drawn 2-2 against Villa in their last two games.

They are now nine points behind Brighton, who are 17th, and Graham Potter’s men need only two wins from their next five to secure top-flight status, provided the Baggies pick up maximum points from their remaining games.

Failure to win this weekend would pretty much sound the death knell, and that’s precisely what Lawrenson has predicted, going for a 1-1 draw.

In his BBC Sport column, he wrote, “They have improved since Big Sam arrived, but not enough to ever look like they would climb out of the bottom three. When push came to shove, the quality just wasn’t there.

I think West Brom will be competitive again against Wolves this time, but I don’t see another win for Allardyce.

“Wolves got taken apart by Burnley last weekend, and they will definitely tighten up a lot this time.”

Prepare for the Championship

We’ve picked up 18 points from the 20 games Sam Allardyce has been in charge, averaging 0.9 per match. Under Slaven Bilic it was 0.54 – showing that Big Sam’s appointment made a huge difference.

No blame attached to him, but we’ve had one of the weakest sides on paper in the Premier League and our best bet is to ensure that Allardyce, or whoever the next manager is, sells our key players the blueprint for promotion.

This is the best thing we can hope for to ensure we don’t fall into a rut and become Championship regulars.

The likes of Sam Johnstone, Okay Yokuslu and Matheus Pereira have been in sublime form recently and they’ll be the ones to watch out for against Wolves, and should we win, offer us a glimmer of hope for survival.

In other West Brom news, Baggies likely to sell ace Shearer called ‘Brilliant’, host of PL clubs linked – report

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