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West Brom Among Promotion Favourites Under New Boss Ismael

Only Norwich City has more promotions to the Premier League this century than West Bromwich Albion, and the Baggies will be looking to match the Canaries by going up from the EFL Championship for a sixth time in 20 years this coming season.

To that end, Albion has appointed Barnsley boss Valérien Ismaël following their relegation from the Premier League under Sam Allardyce, which you can read about at This marks a change of tack and direction from West Brom.

Ismaël worked wonders at Barnsley, arriving at Oakwell in October when predecessor Gerhard Struber left to coach the New York Red Bulls after barely keeping the Tykes in the Championship the previous season. Former Crystal Palace defender Ismaël took a side that finished 21st in the league into the play-offs.

Although Barnsley didn’t gain the promotion, they were very close and defied all the odds in making a top-six finish. They also did it in style, which contrasts sharply with the football played at The Hawthorns. Ismaël won’t be flying under the radar anymore.

Perhaps his former club Palace regrets not making a move for him after narrowly missing out on Swiss manager and former Borussia Dortmund boss Lucien Favre. It’s with West Brom where Ismaël will be trying to secure an immediate return to the Premier League.

Betting on who gets promoted into the English top-flight can be just as popular as wagering on the teams already there. That is why leading UK casinos are often attached to sportsbooks that provide markets on the Championship. You can view all the latest offers and promotions at, which lists the best deposit bonuses. A casual glance at the promotion betting sees the Baggies right up there with fellow relegated sides Fulham and Sheffield United, plus Championship play-off losers Bournemouth and Swansea City. Ismaël’s old side Barnsley aren’t expected to repeat their top-six finish automatically.

Ismaël inherits an Albion side that will be feeling the absence of several senior players including Polish winger Kamil Grosicki, Wales forward Hal Robson-Kanu, defensive duo Branislav Ivanović, and Lee Peltier, as well as veteran goalkeeper Andy Lonergan, as noted on West Brom also released many of their up-and-coming players as they trimmed their Academy and Under-23 teams following relegation. Ismaël can call upon quite a few proven Championship performers in forward areas to choose from.

Scottish talent Matt Phillips and Robert Snodgrass are senior players now with Karlan Grant and Matheus Pereira also among those who have done well at this level before. As Ismaël played a three-man defence and wingbacks at Barnsley, Albion will need to recruit for their rearguard as they are thin on the ground.

As they have an established reputation of being a yo-yo club, the Baggies must try and live up to that in the new season. Anything less than a serious promotion push will be regarded as a failure for a promising manager, but for now, it looks as though the Baggies have pulled off a coup coaching capture.

Article title: West Brom Among Promotion Favourites Under New Boss Ismael

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