Adrian Clarke looks at key tactical points in Matchweek 28.
Sam Allardyce's side have become harder to break down and have conceded only two goals across their last five matches.
In each of those outings West Brom allowed their opponents fewer shots than their season average of 15.04.
|Man Utd||10||D 1-1|
In engaging their opponents much higher up the pitch, they are a less passive side without the ball than they were earlier in the campaign.
While defensive midfielder Okay Yokuslu has made an impact since joining in January, it is Allardyce's tactical change that has sparked an improvement from his defence.
Palace beat West Brom 5-1 at The Hawthorns in December, but they will find it far more competitive this time around.
One of the unsung stars of West Brom’s upturn in form is Dara O’Shea.
The versatile defender has featured in several positions across the backline but has shone brightly in the centre, where he has partnered Kyle Bartley.
O’Shea’s response to that experience has been a positive one, helping his side keep three clean sheets in the last four matches.
He has since shown more authority in his duels and has quickly regained the trust of his head coach.
|Last four matches||Total||Success rate|
|Aerial duels won||13||86.6%|
|Total duels won||19||76.0%|
Left-back Conor Townsend has also been in terrific form of late.
In the goalless draw with Newcastle United last weekend, he made five key passes and delivered eight crosses from open play.
Townsend is looking increasingly confident as a top-flight player and has struck up a good partnership with striker Mbaye Diagne.
Comfortable in possession and defensively solid, Townsend is now an integral member of Allardyce’s back four.
Now that West Brom appear to have sorted their issues in defence, Allardyce will hope his attackers can rise to the occasion and give him a victory against his former club.