Rickie Lambert’s value to be felt by both West Brom and punters


West Brom fans weren’t exactly spoilt when it came to goals from their team last season, with the Baggies netting just 38 times.

But in new arrival Rickie Lambert, they not only have another threat up front, but punters of all persuasions could have found a bit of value.

The former Liverpool man is 5/2 to outscore his Hawthorns team-mates last season, just second in the betting behind even money favourite Saido Berahino.

Forget Lambert’s last season tally of two Premier League goals for the Reds.

He played more than an hour on just seven occasions under Brendan Rodgers, and given more game time can find the net far more frequently.

Two years at Southampton showed he can cut it in the top-flight, bagging 13 and 15 times for the south coast club.

The little-and-large partnership with Berahino looks likely to see Lambert become a mainstay in the west Midlands. While he will undoubtedly help his fellow hitman to more goals, the assistance from elsewhere could see Lambert get among them goals again.

Fellow arrival James McClean and stalwart Chris Brunt will provide plenty of ammunition from midfield for the Merseysider to strike.

Both players provided the most assists for their current clubs last season, the former providing six goals for Wigan and Brunt setting up 10 for Albion.

Furthermore, West Brom’s apparent love of a set-piece goal, no doubt influenced by gaffer Tony Pulis, could see the big man flourish up top.

Half of the Baggies goals came from set-plays last season, and with Lambert providing the aerial talent to get on the end of crosses from Messrs Brunt and McClean, could easily reach double figures.

He could also be called upon from the spot as well, as he was at Southampton.

Four of Berahino’s strikes last term came from penalties, so if wrestling the mantle from the 21-year-old could go close to out-scoring him.


Much could depend on who takes the Baggies penalties

While the he is a worthy favourite to top the charts, it could merit noting that the Burundi-born striker often delivered in spells last season.

After netting five goals in four games soon after the start of the campaign, a barren run of 10 games followed.

He then rediscovered some form with five in nine, before going another eight fixtures without getting his name on the scoresheet.

Potentially a real confidence striker, any length of time in the goalscoring doldrums could see Lambert pounce and provide the biggest outpost for Tony Pulis’ men in the season ahead.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Ben Stones

Ladbrokes News’ equine expert, Ben likes nothing more than studying the form to pick out a winner or two for our readers. A Journalism and Media Studies graduate from the University of Winchester, Ben has previously written for a number of football and racing blogs and websites, as well as contributing to the sports pages of his home-town newspaper.