Valerien Ismael has dropped a hint regarding the transfer business West Bromwich Albion still have to do this summer.
In a recent interview with Birmingham Live, the West Brom manager revealed that, despite Albion having made just two signings in the summer transfer window thus far with several holes still in need of plugging in the Baggies’ first team squad, he is in no real rush to bring a glut of new faces to The Hawthorns.
The Frenchman added that this is because of just how impressive many of the West Brom starlets have been in pre-season, with the 45-year-old stating upon his arrival at the club that he would be looking to integrate a number of the most promising academy players into his first team plans.
However, Ismael also suggested that he is nevertheless working on a number of deals behind the scenes, and is not afraid to dip into the transfer market if he feels the need to do so.
“We will see, I think at the moment I said that the good thing is our young players are doing well and they have given us time,” Ismael told Birmingham Live when questioned about Albion’s transfer business.
“There is no rush on the transfer market, we want to see the young players and [at Watford] it was a very important game for us.
“We needed to assess the players but we saw that the performance was there. They understood the principle and I think it is better for us if we can push some young players from the academy.
“We will do it if we have the possibility and if the performance and commitment is there we will do it. Otherwise, for sure we will show what we can do in the transfer market but at the minute there is no rush.
“We are working behind the scenes to prepare. We prepare a lot of things already but we have no rush because of the good performance from the young players.”
With Ismael arriving at the club amid speculation that he would be looking to reshape West Brom from the bottom to the top, these comments are arguably the first evidence of the 45-year-old’s plans in action.
Indeed, it would surprise us if the Baggies did not make a few more additions to their squad this summer, with the middle of the park in particular looking rather short on depth.
However, considering just how successful the Frenchman was when placing his trust in youngsters with Barnsley last season – and clubs such as Swansea City and Lincoln City thriving with a team featuring a number of players closer to the beginning than the end of their careers – that Ismael is looking to prioritise the West Brom academy starlets ahead of splurging in the transfer market should be music to the ears of Baggies fans who have endured some expensive flops over the years.
With the likes of Taylor Gardner-Hickman, Rayhaan Tulloch, Rico Richards and Caleb Taylor all featuring regularly for the club in pre-season, West Brom could well see a number of very promising players developing into first team regulars over the coming months – an exciting prospect, indeed.