Tony Pulis Sacked. Who will replace him?

Tony Pulis has been sacked as manager of West Bromwich Albion, following a disastrous start to this season. With a run of ten games without a victory, the Hawthorns sit just above the relegation zone. With the poor finish to last season, they’ve been victorious in only two of 21 games, leaving them struggling to survive.

Lack of goals and poor midfield have been the key issue. Top scorer Jay Rodriguez netting only twice for the Baggies. Whilst West Brom once noted for their defensive qualities, they’ve failed in that area too, leading to consecutive defeats. Key Signing Nacer Chadli, the creativity in the side, has started only twice in the Premier League.

Pulis was also instrumental in bringing quality players like Jake Livermore, and Kieran Gibbs. Sadly to no avail.

Despite an encouraging start with wins over Burnley and Bournemouth, it has been a nightmare for Tony Pulis ever since. Injury woes prevail with Oliver Burke, defender Craig Dawson, and dependable midfielder James Morrison all out. A combination of this and fan hostility have been instrumental in the Pulis demise.

Chelsea hammering the final straw

This weekends’ 4-0 hammering by Chelsea though, was the last straw for club owner Guochan Lai. He witnesed a fan revolt, placards to boot, demanding the departure of the manager. The vitrolic atmosphere and mathematics, spelled the end for 59 year old Tony Pulis’ three years at the Hawthorn’s helm.

Pulis received the news by club chairman John Williams on Monday morning. The search will now begin for a successor. Williams told a press conference;

“These decisions are never taken lightly but always in the interests of the club, we are in a results business, over the back end of the season, ours have been very disappointing.”

“We would like to place on record our appreciation of Tony’s contribution and hard work during a period of transition for the club which included a change of ownership. We wish him well in his future endeavours.”

It was Pulis who pulled the Hawthorns back after their last set of troubles. He has long been the man called in as ‘rescuer’ to his previous employers. It could be seen for him as a lucky escape. Being manager of a relegated side isn’t a good addition to any managerial Curriculum Vitae.

Pulis received some criticism for bringing Gary Megson as his assistant. Megson returned to the club seventeen years after being instrumental in their rise to the Premier League. The solution to their problems. He has now accepted the reins, taking immediate charge of first team affairs, officially Cartetaker manager of the Baggies.

Ironically, had he not been already in charge, Pulis would have been the ideal replacement. Baggies’ fans may rue their anger, and been more careful what they wished for.

A Return for Derek McInnes?

Speculation is mounting already as to who may replace Tony Pulis. There’s been suggestion of former Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes, himself a former West Brom captain, deemed ideal.

Bookies Paddy Power show Northern Ireland manager Michael O’Neill emerging 7/2 favourite. Sam Allardyce, Nigel Pearson, Alan Pardew and  Republic of Ireland manager Martin O Neill have also entered the betting, the press also speculating on the transition.

Megson is facing a tough couple of games in charge. His first away to Mauricio Pochettino’s Tottenham at Wembley. Bruised by a recent defeat to rivals Arsenal, Spurs will be anxious to regain the points and the momentum gained.

Tottenham Hotspur v West Bromwich Albion kicks off at 3 p.m Wembley Stadium.

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