Mark Lawrenson predicts West Brom v Aston Villa

West Brom - The Hawthorns

The Baggies face the Villans in the Premier League this weekend.

Mark Lawrenson believes West Brom will beat Aston Villa 2-0 this weekend, according to his regular predictions column on BBC Sport.

Indeed, West Brom host their local rivals at the Hawthorns and find themselves in a much healthier position than Villa. And the pundit doesn't believe the visitors can upset the odds against their Black Country opponents.

Lawrenson told the BBC ahead of the clash: "I don't see Villa riding their luck again and getting anything at The Hawthorns.

"What has not helped their cause is that, although they have picked up some points, so have the teams immediately above them and the gap to fourth-bottom and safety remains a chasm."

West Brom are without a win in two and, interestingly, Aston Villa are unbeaten in two.

But, if you look further than that, it's clearly the Baggies who are favoured. Tony Pulis's men sit a full 15 points above Villa and, at home, can make things tough for any side in the Premier League.

West Brom fans will want Salomon Rondon to get scoring regularly, while more goals from Rudy Gestede will no doubt be welcomed by the Aston Villa faithful.

A win, meanwhile, could lift West Brom up to 11th in the Premier League table, while Villa will only be three points off 19th-placed Sunderland if they triumph and the Black Cats don't win - but still way off safety.

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