Back on New Year’s Day of 2015, West Brom confirmed the appointment of Tony Pulis as the club’s new manager following the departure of Alan Irvine the previous month.
60-year-old Irvine was drafted in by the Baggies hierarchy in the summer of 2014 but won just five of his 22 games in charge of the Midlands outfit, thus prompting the club’s board to part with the Scot at the end of December to thus bring ex-Stoke City boss Pulis to the Hawthorns.
And given his reputation of never having been relegated from the Premier League during his career, Pulis’ arrival at West Brom stimulated quite a positive and excited response from Baggies supporters on Twitter…
@WBAFCofficial Brilliant news!!!
— Graham (@albiongmb) January 1, 2015
— Mrboomdog (@mrboomdog) January 1, 2015
@WBAFCofficial about time we had a good manager now let’s get rid of the backroom staff and let him bring his own staff in
— Trev Tyler (@trevor2520) January 1, 2015
@WBAFCofficial makes a change from the usual saga well done. clear out the dead wood now
— Andi Cheung (@andicheung) January 1, 2015
@WBAFCofficial Well done for sorting it so quickly
— Mark Rollason (@mark_rollason) January 1, 2015
@WBAFCofficial now let’s bring in some new players
— ! (@dannydalyLK) January 1, 2015
@WBAFCofficial quality tony pulis army
— Dean Saunders (@Dean_Saunders76) January 1, 2015
@WBAFCofficial this appointment should see us stay in the division, great at hire, hope he can do a Roy!!
— Harro (@ianrharris62) January 1, 2015
And while things didn’t end particularly well for the 60-year-old at the Hawthorns last year, those West Brom fans were right to laud his appointment back in the winter of 2015.
Ultimately, the Baggies were in serious trouble when Pulis took over in January 2015 following the disastrous start to the season overseen by predecessor Irvine, what with the club languishing in and around the relegation places for much of the first half of the campaign.
Yet Pulis came in and steadied the ship to eventually lead the club to a 13th place finish that season, finishing nine points clear of the bottom three, which was much to the delight of the Hawthorns faithful, what with many fearing the worst prior to the 60-year-old’s appointment.
And in his first full season in charge of the club in 2015/16, the now-Middlesbrough boss helped lead the side to 14th in the Premier League in winning ten and drawing 13 of their 38 league games, spending just two weeks of the season inside the bottom three, both of which coming in the first three weeks of the campaign.
And things got even better under Pulis the season after as he inspired the Baggies to a top half finish in the top-flight for the first time since their eighth place effort in 2013, which was particularly impressive given they lost seven of their last eight games of the season.
And that woeful run to end the campaign started to bring about the end for Pulis at the Hawthorns, as although they then began the 2017/18 season with two wins from their first two games, the 60-year-old then failed to win another league game prior to his departure in the November with the club just outside the division’s bottom three.
Yes, Pulis’ style of play came under fire for much of his time in charge of West Brom, and things did end on something of a sour note given the job he did during his stint at the Hawthorns, but on the whole Baggies fans will likely look back on his tenure with satisifaction.
So while it didn’t end particularly well for the now-Boro chief, those West Brom fans were right to laud his appointment back in January 2015, as they looked to be heading only one way prior to his arrival.
West Brom fans… what do you think? Let us know!