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Why West Brom should be taking Bristol City seriously

| 18.01.2016

Among the 10 FA Cup Third Round replays taking place this week, one very realistic chance of an upset could be coming at Ashton Gate when Bristol City take on West Brom.

The winner will play Peterborough in the Fourth Round, and the Championship side have every reason to believe they’ll be there after a morale-boosting win at the weekend.

Championship leaders Middlesbrough were in town on Saturday, but the Robins – who sacked Steve Cotterill last week – produced a dogged performance to snatch a 1-0 win thanks to Wes Burns’ injury-time winner. The goal was especially notable as ‘Boro hadn’t conceded in nine league games.

West Brom meanwhile suffered a drab 3-0 defeat away at Southampton, and though Tony Pulis’ side are 21/20 favourites for the cup match, they’ll need to perform far better than they did in the original tie.

Only a James Morrison leveller in stoppage-time spared the Baggies’ blushes in the first-leg, after Jonathan Kodija and Kieran Agard put City deservedly ahead at the Hawthorns.

To add more weight behind a potential cup upset, West Brom’s away record of late has been rather poor.

The Midlands side have lost four and drawn two of their last six away games, and they’ve won only one of their last nine on the road in all competitions.

The Robins are 13/5 to make the last 32, but as is so often the case when a team and manager part ways, the team picks up form and that may well be the case with City.

West Brom haven’t enjoyed much success in the FA Cup since famously reaching the semi-finals in 2008, crashing out at the Third Round stage in three of the last five years.

By definition any win by a team ranked lower than their opposition is an upset, but there’s plenty of support to suggest that a home win would be anything but a surprise in the south west.

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Richard Marsh

Richard loves his sport, especially if it involves the sound of tyres screaming around a race track. He's not fussy though and his '90s Premier League nostalgia and knowledge of team nicknames is tough to match.