West Bromwich Albion manager Valerien Ismael has dropped an update on the condition of both Daryl Dike and Matt Phillips ahead of the Baggies’ upcoming Championship clash.
In recent comments cited by the Express & Star, the 46-year-old Albion manager revealed that, following his £7m move from Orlando City earlier this month, the 21-year-old centre-forward is progressing well in his four-week fitness programme, and should be available for the trip to Queens Park Rangers on Saturday.
Speaking about the current condition of the USA international, Ismael said: “At the minute Daryl Dike is on his own programme – we have a four-week plan for him. This week he is training with the team with the purpose of building him up for the game at QPR. He’s at a good level. He played with consistency last year and last season.”
The Frenchman also went on to state that Phillips, who had been out of action with a muscle problem picked up back in November until the club’s FA Cup loss to Brighton & Hove Albion last weekend, will once again be available for selection against QPR.
Concerning the 30-year-old winger, Ismael said: “We saw against Brighton that the last five weeks without him, it was very difficult to get something special from the front three. He can keep the ball in the front three. He is able to combine with teammates and he has quality. It’s another player who has come back and has given us more options.”
Considering the fact that West Brom have somewhat struggled for goals in their last five outings, finding the back of the net just four times in this run of games, the news that both Dike and Phillips look to be available for selection against Mark Warburton’s impressive QPR side this weekend is sure to have left Ismael buzzing.
Indeed, Dike certainly looks to be a player who knows where the back of the net is, with the £9m-rated striker scoring 11 goals, registering one assist and creating two big chances over his 19 MLS appearances last season, as well as taking an average of 1.8 shots per game.
Meanwhile, over Phillips’ 19 Championship fixtures in the current campaign, the £2.7m-rated man has bagged three goals, provided two assists and created two big chances for his teammates, with these metrics seeing the Scotland international average a SofaScore match rating of 6.88.
As such, the availability of both players will undoubtedly provide West Brom’s chances of picking up all three points against their promotion rivals with a significant boost this weekend, something that will certainly be a very pleasing outcome for Ismael.