The 2016/17 season, Albion's 118th
league campaign, sees the club embark on their seventh successive Premier League season and their
11th in total. With the club now under wealthy new ownership, Baggies boss Tony
Pulis will be hoping to improve on last season's 14th place finish.
Albion's rising stars will this season enter Premier League 2 - a new
competition that replaces the Under-21 Premier League. The age limit for players
has risen from Under-21 to Under-23. The competition will take on the same
format as it's forerunner of two tiers, Division 1 and Division 2, with 12 teams
in each. Albion will start in Division 2 alongside Aston Villa, Blackburn
Rovers, Brighton & Hove Albion, Fulham, Middlesbrough, Newcastle United, Norwich
City, Stoke City, Swansea City, West Ham United and Wolverhampton Wanderers. All
players born after 1 January 1993 are eligible to play.
The Baggies will
also enter new territory this season by entering a development team into the
restructured Football League Trophy.
Sixteen development teams will
join the 48 clubs from League One and League Two, split into sixteen
regionalised groups of four. Development teams will be required to field a
minimum of six Under-21 players in their starting eleven. Albion last entered a
team into the competition during the 1992/93 season.
The Barclays Premier Under-18 League will again see two leagues (North and South)
each consisting of
Clubs will play each opposing
club in their own regional group twice, both home and away.
Albion will once more be participating in the Northern Regional League where
they will face Blackburn Rovers, Derby County, Everton, Liverpool, Manchester
City, Manchester United, Middlesbrough, Newcastle United, Stoke City, Sunderland
and Wolverhampton Wanderers.
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