According to Italian media outlet Tuttomercatoweb, West Brom are said to be stepping up their interest in two definitive candidates to secure Roy Hodgson’s successor, this after a month of sounding out potential candidates to replace the outgoing England manger.
The Baggies are thought to hold Birmingham boss Chris Hughton as their main target alongside former Schalke manager Ralf Rangnick. The club have also spoken to Former Chelsea boss Claudio Ranieri and Ex Manchester United and Chelsea midfielder Ray Wilkins although both are now thought to be no longer in the running for the job.
53-year-old Hughton has been a respected figure in the English coaching game since he took up a role as the assistant manager for Tottenham in 1998. He has since progressed into a promising manager who led Newcastle back to the Premier League successfully in the 09/10 season in his first spell as a manager. Controversially he was sacked by Newcastle in Decemeber 2010 which was a hugely unpopular decision with the clubs fans and playing staff at the time.
This season he was back into management with Birmingham who had just been relegated to the championship the previous season. After leading Birmingham through their European campaign in the Europa League, he managed to lead The Blues to an impressive 4th in the league to enter the play-off’s where they lost in the semi-finals to Blackpool.
Ralf Rangnick is thought to be equally as high on the West Brom shortlist of candidates after an impressive track record in his native Germany. Last season Rangnick oversaw the final few months of the season with Schalke, whom he led to the Champions League semi-finals where they were knocked out by Runners-up Manchester United.
Rangnick’s most notable successes as a manger came with Hoffenheim who he earned promotion with to the Bundesliga in the 07/08 season. He stabilised the clubs position in the league in his time in charge, something which West Brom will hope he can continue to do with them as they look to progress following an impressive league campaign this season
Whilst Hughton and Rangnick look to be the most favoured suitors at West Brom, Claudio Ranieri – who was interviewed twice by chairman Jeremy Peace – is now reported to be joining AS Monaco instead, as the interest from The Baggies in requiring his services seemed to cool. It is also thought Ray Wilkins didn’t meet the requirements that West Brom feel are needed at the club.
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