Slaven Bilić takes charge of his first competitive Albion game as they open the 2019/20 campaign with a trip to face Nottingham Forest at the City Ground on Saturday (ko 5.30pm).
Their last outing
In their final pre-season game Forest had victory snatched away from them in the dying moments to draw 2-2 with Real Sociedad.
Joe Worrall fired the Reds ahead before Roberto Lopez equalised for the visitors. Lewis Grabban put the hosts in front once more but was cancelled out late on by Nais Djouahra.
FOREST: Muric; Cash, Worrall, Dawson (c), Robinson; Watson, Semedo; Lolley, Silva (Ameobi 67), Adomah (Appiah 76); Grabban (Johnson 83).
In their dugout
Forest are managed by Sabri Lamouchi, who took over at the City Ground at the end of June following Martin O’Neill's dismissal.
Lamouchi’s appointment means they have been managed by three people in the space of a year, with Aitor Karanka in charge 12 months ago.
One to watch
Front-man Grabban was Forest’s top scorer last term.
The strong striker netted 16 Sky Bet Championship goals, with their next highest goalscorer Joe Lolley finding the net 11 times.
A summer signing at the City Ground after two years at AFC Bournemouth, Lewis has scored over 100 league goals in nearly 300 appearances for 12 clubs.
Our last meeting
Jay Rodriguez scored late to earn Albion a 2-2 Sky Bet Championship draw in our last meeting with Nottingham Forest at The Hawthorns in February.
The visitors capitalised on a misplaced pass to register a sixth-minute lead as Ryan Yates converted from close range, though Stefan Johansen was unfortunate to get the final touch and credited with an own goal.
Jacob Murphy levelled for the Baggies in the 54th minute before Yates again put the away side ahead, but Rodriguez converted a last-gasp penalty to grab an important share of the spoils.
- The Baggies have won three times and drawn once in their last four league visits to the City Ground, conceding just a single goal.
- Albion twice came from behind to earn points against Forest last term.
- After an initial defeat to Villarreal Slaven Bilić's side went unbeaten during pre-season - beating Scunthorpe United 4-0, while drawing with Rotherham United (1-1) and AFC Bournemouth (0-0).
- The Reds took three wins, a loss and two draws from their six pre-season fixtures.
- Forest drew four of their first five Sky Bet Championship fixtures last term.
- The most recent time Forest opened their campaign on August 3 was in 2013, beating Huddersfield Town 1-0 at the City Ground.
From the archive
Let's go back 16 years to 2003 when Albion recorded a comfortable 3-0 victory at the City Ground thanks to a Jason Koumas double and an own goal by Matthieu Louis-Jean...
Head to head
|Albion wins||Draws||Forest wins|
Our man to watch
Filip Krovinović arrived at The Hawthorns this summer, joining from Benfica on a season-long loan.
Slaven Bilić's first signing as Baggies boss poked home a low finish after linking up with Oliver Burke in Scunthorpe, also whipping a corner into the near post for Dara O'Shea to head home at Rotherham United and earning positive reviews in the goalless draw against Bournemouth.
Man in the middle
Tickets for Albion's 2,000 seat allocation at the City Ground SOLD OUT after just three days of sales.
Thank you, as always, for your wonderful support!
Follow the game
Comprehensive coverage of the clash with Forest is available in our Match Centre, where you can listen to live commentary on WBA Radio or follow our live text feed.
WBA Radio is the only service that allows Baggies fans around the world - from Smethwick to the Sahara - access to uninterrupted live commentaries from every one of our competitive games. iFollow subscribers can join Gez Mulholland and Drew Williams for Baggies-biased live commentary on Saturday.
You’ll also be able to find score updates on the club's social media channels.