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Bilic Sacked As Big Sam Takes Over: The Croatian becomes the first manager of the season to be sacked as veteran Allardyce steps in.
It has been a disappointing season for West Brom. The once Premier League regulars haven’t lived up to expectation since arriving back in the topflight.
As a result, this week saw the first managerial sacking of the season of Croatian Slaven Bilic. The ex-West Ham and Croatia manager led the Baggies in his first season back to the premiership.
However, having lost eight games from thirteen is just a sign of more things to come. They’ve only managed one win and four draws, sitting in nineteenth on seven points.
The board has decided to take action. Despite an impressive one-all draw with Manchester City, Bilic has been sacked as manager. The news broke less than just twenty-four hours after the City game had finished on Tuesday night.
The club issued a statement on Wednesday stating:
“Albion would like to thank Slaven and his coaching staff for their efforts in achieving promotion last season and wishes them all well in the future,”
The bookies had some immediate favorites reportedly linked to the Hawthorns. These included John Terry, Eddie Howe, Steven Gerrard, Marco Silva, Patrick Viera, Lee Bowyer, and Sam Allardyce.
The club announced Wednesday evening that Big Sam Allardyce, who had most recently managed Everton in 2018 would take over.
The sixty-six-year-old manager is typically the man called into rescue clubs that smell of relegation. He has previously rescued Blackburn, Bolton, West Ham, and Everton from their bad spells.
But many ask why was Bilic sacked? They have had some good results against big clubs and only are two points from safety. Why has West Brom failed this season so far?
Lack Of Transfers And Board Tension
In the surrounding weeks, Bilic has been the favorite to be sacked, and this comes with good reason. His team’s best performances have come against the top sides of United, City, Chelsea, and Tottenham.
However, the Baggies league position is down to their performances against smaller sides, which has cost them.
The critics could point to the defeats against Newcastle and Fulham accompanied by the battering against Crystal Palace.
Having said this, the relationship between the manager and the board has been fractured for quite some time. When Bilic got the Baggies back into the Premier League, there’s no doubt that the board would have promised him big money.
However, this was not the case with the hierarchy allocating only twenty-five million to the team’s transfers. This left Bilic with a squad of Championship players and a handful on loan premiership players.
Bilic has voiced his discontent at the board publicly on numerous occasions, most recently in October. The board broke their promise and sold their best defender just days before the league began.
In the build-up to their game against Brighton, Hegazi was sold to Al-Ittihad in Saudi Arabia for four million.
The Croatian in response, said in a press conference:
“I am really disappointed because we need players,”
Big Sam Has Big Task
Sam Allardyce will take over the Baggies for the first time on Thursday morning for a training session. His first game in charge will be against high flying Aston Villa on Sunday night.
It will be interesting to see since 2018 if Allardyce has adapted his tactics or has maintained his dogged approach.
The club have released a statement on their website in full support of their newly appointed manager.
“In Sam we have a man who has a proven Premier League pedigree with a track record of improving every club he has managed.
“We believe and, more importantly, Sam believes we have a group of players that have the quality needed to give the club its best chance of Premier League survival.”
Allardyce is contracted to the Baggies until the end of the season, however, his task remains a big one. In all the clubs he has managed, not a single one has ever been relegated.
It remains to be seen if he still has what it takes, having been out of work for the last two years. The Englishman will inherit the same Championship squad that Bilic left behind.
The team sorely lacks any Premier League experience with the possibility of relegation remaining. The sixty-six-year-old will need to dig deep to pull this team out of its current losing rut.
Speaking in his first interview as the new manager, when asked about the board and transfers, he said:
“They are prepared to get some players, but we need to find where those players are and who wants to let a player go in this pandemic”
“I can’t suggest at this moment how many players we need”
It remains to be seen if the board will follow through with these statements after Bilic was unsupported.
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