Slaven Bilić, 50, has signed a contract to become the manager of West Brom. The Croatian has been out of management since being sacked from a dismal showing at Al-Ittihad of the Saudi Professional League. West Brom, however, have singled out Bilić from a vast managerial hunt that has seen several candidates interviewed. The negotiations hit stumbling blocks regarding Bilić’s wages but West Brom finally sealed the deal with a two-year contract.
Bilić managed the Croatian national team for six years taking them to the quarterfinals of Euro 2008. More memorable for Premier League fans, Bilić was the manager of West Ham, guiding the Hammers to a seventh-place finish. Although Bilić doesn’t have any silverware in his managerial career, he offers an entertaining brand of football. According to Frank Lampard, Bilić excels at man-management and is a master of mind games. These qualities should stand him in good stead in the notoriously difficult Championship promotion hunt.
The Job at Hand
West Brom are keen to improve upon last season that saw them beaten in the playoffs by Aston Villa. The tight playoff game was decided on penalties and the West Brom hierarchy look to add an experienced manager to lead a promotion charge.
Bilić will have to work fast to bring in any new players to revamp his squad. One of the first transfer tasks for the new manager is to seal the futures of Jay Rodriguez, Salomon Rondon, and Craig Dawson. All of whom have been linked to moves away from the Albion. There has also been interest in West Brom’s young starlet, Louie Barry. Barry has excelled in West Brom’s youth set-up and Barcelona are reportedly keen on the transfer according to Sky Sources. Barry will be eligible for a transfer to another European club in late June when he turns 16.
The Baggies will want their new man in the building as soon as possible as they look to forge a route out of the Championship. Bilic and the West Brom board have discussed the plans for the club and Bilić stated: “We want to improve on the pitch and Albion have convinced me they want to return to the Premier League”.
With the contract finally hammered out, Slaven Bilić’s new career objective is clear; restore West Brom to the premier league.
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