Five ways Darren Moore has made an impact at West Brom
With Darren Moore stepping into the hot seat at West Brom, we look at five ways he's made an impact since replacing Alan Pardew.
Jay Rodriguez's goal was enough to secure a stunning win for Albion over Manchester United at Old Trafford on Sunday, whilst in his first game, Moore guided the side to a draw against Swansea.
Whilst relegation still seems a formality, performances have picks up under the temporary boss, leading some to consider him for the job on a permanent basis.
He’s installed a team spirit
The squad was unhappy under Alan Pardew, confused by the tactical approach, and concerned with some of his methods.
There were rebellions off and on the pitch. But Moore has managed to unify the team with his own determined yet bubbly character.
There were several revealing statements from the likes of Ben Foster, James McClean and Jay Rodriguez after the game.
Put simply, he is a man they are willing to run through brick walls for, and his predecessor was not.
He has organised the team in a simple but effective way
It is not flashy. There are no inverted wingers or false nines or people playing out of position, just square pegs in square holes doing the jobs they know.
Craig Dawson at centre-back rather than right-back, Allan Nyom at right-back rather than left-back, Jay Rodriguez up front instead of on the wing. Two pacy wingers out wide.
It’s a simple 4-4-2 that is solid and compact without the ball and then able to stretch play with it.
It’s back to basics, and it’s working.
The midfield pair of Brunt and Livermore
Pardew played Chris Brunt in midfield but under Moore he has been given a more prominent role.
Without Jonny Evans or Grzegorz Krychowiak in the team, he is the quarterback, the man who dictates play for the Baggies.
It works because Livermore is willing to do the legwork around him, and he’s started to bomb further up the pitch in support of the strikers.
Albion have been overrun in midfield at times this season, but this pair have help from Rodriguez at No.10, who drops back in when needed.
He’s getting the best out of Jay Rodriguez
Albion’s top scorer has two goals in Moore’s two games, and is now on 11 for the season, which is a decent return for a team who has only scored 37 goals in all competitions and 27 in the league.
He’s the best finisher in the team and should have been played consistently up front all season but Tony Pulis put him on the wing and Alan Pardew dropped him when he was on form.
He’s been man of the match in the last two games as well, and has worked his socks off.
Albion will be lucky if they can keep hold of him next season.
He’s reinstated players willing to battle like James McClean
The winger was guilty of some poor mistakes in the first half of the season but he’s been excellent in Moore’s two games in charge and he’s the sort of character you need when the chips are down.
While others slump their shoulders, McClean battles on, and that can be infectious.
McClean’s pace and willingness to get chalk on his boots provides an outlet, and considering Matt Phillips’s poor form this season, that is invaluable.
If you want to counter-attack, he’s needed.