Foster’s improved form a big positive for West Brom


West Brom

1st Team Goalkeepers: Ben Foster (29), Boaz Myhill (29), Luke Daniels (24)

Birmingham’s failure to climb the ladder back to the Premier League was greeted with glee at the Hawthorns and it was down to more than local rivalry. It meant they got to sign Ben Foster permanently and in a season of transition, having a tried and trusted goalkeeper is a good foundation as Steve Clarke steps into the considerable shoes of Roy Hodgson.

Foster has always had lightening reflexes. At times however, they’ve been undermined by a lack of agility and some clumsy handling. There are no doubts that these remain a concern, but in the closing months of last season, Foster performed in a way that suggested he’s getting on top of his issues. He kept ten clean sheets and was a huge part of the successful season West Brom enjoyed last term. If he maintains his progress, he could finally deliver upon the potential he promised prior to struggling under the pressure of a move to Manchester United.

Behind him, the Baggies aren’t doing too badly. Boaz Myhill is a solid back-up. He’s not always the most easy on the eye, but the talent is obvious and he gets the job done more often than not. He’s not the most athletic of goalkeepers, but he’s got plenty of experience and turning to him shouldn’t cause too many concerns.

Luke Daniels is the third string. He has been a Baggy since 2004, but hasn’t made an appearance for the club. He has relied on loan spells for his playing time and he’ll probably face more of the same in the next few months.

West Brom are 5/2 to finish in the Top 10 of the Premier League – BET NOW


West Brom in for Bill Hamid

West Bromwich Albion are said to be stepping up their interest in highly rated US goalkeeper, Bill Hamid. The 20 year old has been first choice at DC United for little over a year and has been fast-tracked into the international set-up, although he is yet to make his senior debut.

As the evidence below highlights, he’s immensely agile with quick reflexes. With Ben Foster’s loan deal expiring at the end of the season, Roy Hodgson needs to pad out his goalkeeping ranks and signing Hamid would make sense.

That said however, he’s still a little rough around the edges and would need to work on his handling in particular to be a viable 1st choice. I’ve railed against the notion goalkeepers need to catch every single shot and cross perfectly, but having watched him several times during the MLS season, I think he opts to parry and punch too often. Or at least often enough to earn unwanted ‘flapper’ labels from pundits and journalists.

He’d be an interesting addition to the Premier League if it was to happen, but success is far from guaranteed.