West Bromwich Albion appointed former Barnsley manager, Valerien Ismael, as their new manager in the summer after the side was relegated from Premier League under Sam Allardyce.
Ismael is suffering a poor run of form that has seen West Brom struggle to score and failing to register enough wins to close the gap on Fulham and Bournemouth who currently sit in the automatic promotion spots at the top of the table, whilst West Brom trail behind in third.
Valerien Ismael is now speculated to be in a vulnerable position, with former Birmingham Live journalist, Chris Lepkowski, taking to Twitter to discuss the potential of the dismissal of Ismael as early as before Christmas.
“I suspect Valerien Ismael is in territory now where he might struggle to make Xmas if things don’t quickly change,” he said.
“It’ll be the manager who pays the price. It always is. We are now closer to 13th points wise than 2nd. The players will be protected.”
He further added:
“Sacking him now would be a huge admission they got it wrong.
“But if attendances drop – which they already are – and the Board start getting it, they’ll be more likely to act. He needs a big result on Saturday.”
There have been no official reports or word from West Brom on their stance as yet on the future of Ismael, but surely the pressure will rise for the manager if he doesn’t start to pull something out of the bag for West Brom.
West Brom’s priority is to get promoted back into the Premier League, and if they feel that it can’t be achieved under the management of Ismael, there will surely be very quick decisions made to ensure the club can bring in somebody who can secure promotion for the side and change the path of their season in time.
It’s clear that Ismael’s tactics is only taking the side so far, with Friday night’s performance against Nottingham Forest the perfect example of the tactics not being adaptable to counter or react to the opposition’s course of play.
Although West Brom are creating chances in high numbers, with 61 shots in the last three games, not a single one has been finished correctly to seal a win for the Baggies.
Some fans would be happy to see Ismael sacked, even at this early stage in the season, taking to Twitter to vent their frustrations.
One fan tweeted; “Ismael needs to be sacked because this will get worse and worse #wba”
Another Albion fan speculated the potential of sacking Ismael tweeting;
“I’m not calling for Ismael’s head BUT I do think it’s worth pointing out Watford sacked their manager in 5th and went up 2nd. Villa sacked Bruce and went on a real run. Board know what it’s like leaving it too late with Bilic last year.”
With that in mind, a large section of the Albion faithful would surely be buzzing if Lepkowski’s prediction came true. After all, it could put an end to their current poor run of form – a stretch that’s seen them win just once in five – and inspire a run to promotion.
In other news: Johnstone tipped to stay at West Brom until summer