West Brom have reportedly added former Chelsea staff Ray Wilkins and Claudio Ranieri to their shortlist to replace Roy Hodgson as manager of the Baggies.
Ranieri has just been sacked after an ill-fated stint as Inter Milan boss and could be on the verge of a return to the Premier League, almost 8 years after being acrimoniously sacked as Chelsea boss by Roman Abramovich. Wilkins left Stamford Bridge in 2010 and his departure coincided with a sharp downturn in Chelsea’s form – which eventually led to Carlo Ancelotti’s sacking.
The Baggies are looking for a new manager after Roy Hodgson left to take the England job and the current bookie’s favourite is Birmingham City boss Chris Hughton, but do any of these names really inspire you? Hughton is a solid manager and did a good job at Newcastle before taking Birmingham to the playoffs and progressing in Europe. Out of the three, I think Hughton should be given the job if possible, but what about other candidates?
Speaking to West Brom fans, they want someone who has knowledge of the foreign market. You can get as short as 16/1 on Andre Villas-Boas taking the job but this has to be a pipedream given that the Portuguese manager is attracting interest from Liverpool and Roma.
The man I’d like to see get the job is former Getafe and Mallorca manager Michael Laudrup. Laudrup left Mallorca under terrible circumstances, with players being signed behind his back and no money being put into the club. Laudrup said he would take a break from the game and now he’s set for a return to management.
Hodgson laid the foundations at West Brom and steadied the ship brilliantly after Roberto di Matteo’s exit, and Laudrup could find that West Brom are the perfect team to rebuild his reputation. Unfortunately for me, Laudrup hasn’t really been considered so far.
It looks like a straight fight between Hughton, Ranieri and Wilkins right now. Ranieri has the experience but hasn’t particularly been impressive in recent times, whilst Wilkins hasn’t taken full charge of a team since 1998.
Hughton was an option for the job when Hodgson landed it and is a known favourite of the West Brom chairman Jeremy Peace, so I can see him getting the job at the moment. Unfortunately, I can’t get enthused whatsoever by these options for West Brom.
I’m just not totally sure on who else they could appoint.