Chief Executive Mark Jenkins begins in-depth inquest into West Brom's failings
Albion chief executive Mark Jenkins has started a root and branch review into all aspects of the club and has told Alan Pardew that he will remain as head coach until the summer while he completes it.
Jenkins and Pardew met at the training ground yesterday afternoon to discuss the future of the club, and the chief executive told his under-pressure head coach that he was keen to keep him until the end of the season.
Although Jenkins and the board have been concerned by results, the returning chief is eager to address all deep-seated problems within the club ahead of a reboot in the summer.
Pardew’s position will be re-assessed then, and while it currently looks unlikely that he will stay on, the board are open to all eventualities.
Jenkins told the head coach to restore some fight and spirit into the Albion squad for the last eight games and that if the Baggies were destined to go down, they need to go down fighting.
Li Piyue, who is currently a director on the board, has emerged as a potential new chairman as the club’s Chinese owner Guochuan Lai attempts to exert more control on proceedings.
Lai has been an absent owner for much of his first 18 months in charge, but having seen the club fall to the bottom of the table, he’s keen to get more involved and a promotion for his man Li is now on the cards.
Rumours Lai is looking to sell the club this summer have been dismissed, and it’s believed he committed his future to Albion during a meeting with Jenkins in China last week.
Both men are now determined to get the Baggies back up to the Premier League within two seasons should their likely relegation be confirmed.
Keeping Pardew until the summer could anger a fanbase that has lost faith in him, but it’s understood that Jenkins does not see the head coach as the only issue at play.
He’s aware the club have paid a record amount on wages and transfer fees this season on a squad that is delivering its worst ever performance in the Premier League.
There is also a feeling that former head coach Tony Pulis dismantled the club’s contingency plans for disaster by removing long-term coaches Keith Downing and Dean Kiely.
The Baggies are hoping that Jenkins’s review over the next two months will give them the best platform with which to attack next season, which is likely to be in the Championship.