West Bromwich Albion of England defender, Semi Ajayi is bound to face stiff challenge from former Chelsea centre back, Branislav Ivanovic, who has signed a one-year deal having been a free agent after leaving Zenit Saint Petersburg of Russia at the end of last season, megasportsarena.com gathered.
While Ajayi has been outstanding since joining The Baggies from Rotherham United and starred in their opening match of the new season last weekend, he is bound to get a fierce test of his credentials from Ivanovic, who won three English Premier League titles, three English FA Cups, one UEFA Champions League, one UEFA Europa League and one League Cup during his nine-year-stint at Stamford Bridge.
It is now left to be seen how Ajayi, a former Arsenal youth team captain, will cope in the face of new competition for shirts at The Hawthorns, as Ivanovic comes in with lots of experience to his name and the 36-year-old will bring a wealth of experience to WBA’s squad, who will be aiming for survival in the EPL, after starting their return to the-flight with defeat at home.
Ivanovic, who joined Zenit from Chelsea in 2017 and went on to play 125 games in the past three-and-a-half seasons, becomes the sixth signing for The Baggies, following the summer arrivals of Grady Diangana, Matheus Pereira, David Button, Cedric Kipre and Callum Robinson.
Ajayi might now be under pressure to keep his place i the starting line-up moving forward, as he could not save the team from losing 3-0 at home to Leicester City on the opening weekend of the season, while the new arrival has promised to turn the club’s fortunes round for the better.
Ivanovic told The Baggies’ official club website: “The Premier League is the best league in the world. I need to challenge myself and I am ready for the challenge. I am really happy to be back playing in the Premier League. I hope I am going to be successful here. I have a lot of ambition and I want to prove a lot of things. I will give everything for the team.”