West Brom have lost out on clinching Chelsea starlet Conor Gallagher on loan this month according to latest reports from the BBC, and it comes at potentially the worst time with several first-choice midfielders looking likely for time on the sidelines in the near future.
It appears as if league rivals Swansea City have won the race to land the 19-year-old following his recall from Charlton Athletic earlier this month.
The box-to-box midfielder scored six goals and provided three assists in 26 matches for the Addicks this season, per Transfermarkt.
Albion’s initial interest was reported by the Daily Mail last week, but the England U21 international has opted for familiarity with Swans boss Steve Cooper, who led the U17s to World Cup triumph in 2017.
This news isn’t fantastic considering that the Baggies could be without both Romaine Sawyers and Jake Livermore as they both near suspensions once again.
Back in November, the pair served a one-game ban for accumulating five yellow cards and are now nearing the ten booking mark, which is punished with a suspension of two games.
Livermore has quickly picked up three more yellows since and is just two away from a spell on the sidelines despite only picking up his first in October while Sawyers has picked up one fewer, per WhoScored.
Albion will be hoping that they don’t both pick up concurrent suspensions like last time as their presence in the engine room was greatly missed against Sheffield Wednesday despite victory; the three points came courtesy of a late 88th-minute penalty.
The cut-off point is up to, and including, matchday 37, which is still ten games away, so it seems somewhat likely that the duo serves another ban at some stage soon.
Call yourself a Premier League expert? How much did each of these big-money January signings cost?
It means that the loss of a central midfield target is a massive blow due to the lack of quality options behind Slaven Bilic’s favourite pairing, as seen in the match mentioned above.