Baggies duo still doubtful

Odemwingie and Thomas racing to be fit for Chelsea trip

Odemwingie: Struggling with ankle problem and rated at 50/50 for game against Chelsea

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Peter Odemwingie and Jerome Thomas' involvement in West Brom's game against Chelsea remains touch and go.

Both players missed the 2-1 defeat to Manchester United on Sunday and are now racing to be fit for the Baggies' trip to Stamford Bridge this weekend.

Odemwingie has an ankle injury, while Thomas is struggling with a problem of the hip and thigh and first-team coach Michael Appleton says neither man will be rushed.

"Peter has a 50/50 chance of training at the end of the week," Appleton told the club's official website.

"Whether we involve him straight away in the game is a decision the gaffer and staff will make nearer the time.

"We still have three days before the game so if he plays any part on Saturday it will be a bonus.

"Jerome is slightly behind Peter. He's tight around his hip and thigh area.

"We will have to monitor and look after him in terms of his prehab and rehab.

"If it was a cup final he could maybe play but the likelihood is we could then lose him for a month by doing some damage.

"So it's better to be cautious, especially with it being the start of the season. We want to make sure he is fine over the long term."

Gera improvement

Steven Reid is expected to be available after coming off in the 85th minute against United, while Gareth McAuley featured for the reserves on Tuesday following a bout of gastroenteritis.

Zoltan Gera is further away from fitness but remains on track for a possible second Albion debut next month as he continues to recover from a summer ankle operation.

"Zolly is getting better all the time," said Appleton.

"We look forward to him being in training over the next couple of weeks."