Dara O’Shea excited by Valerien Ismael's West Brom plans

Dara O’Shea has expressed excitement at new boss Valerien Ismael’s plans for Albion as he targets an instant return to the Premier League.

Dara O'Shea
Dara O'Shea

Ismael will meet his players for the first time tomorrow when the Baggies begin pre-season training.

But the 45-year-old Frenchman has already spoken to several members of his squad, including defender O’Shea, over the phone to discuss his plans for the club.

“I spoke to him a few days ago on the phone,” said O’Shea. “It sounded really good what he was saying and the way he wants the club to go forward and the way he wants us to play is exciting.

“I think it’s exciting when a new head coach comes in. He looks very ambitious and he has an identity and a way he wants to play. It all seems good and positive for the club.

“To get promoted straight back to the Premier League would be the main goal, and to play regular football as well will be my personal goal.”

Ismael was appointed Sam Allardyce’s successor last week, signing a four-year deal at The Hawthorns after the Baggies agreed to pay Barnsley around £2million in compensation for his services.

Albion’s squad reported to the club’s training ground yesterday for Covid-19 testing. Players need to return a negative test before being allowed to begin pre-season work tomorrow.

Ismael, who took unfancied Barnsley to the play-offs last season, believes work ahead of the new Championship season will be key as he gets to know his new squad.

“During pre-season we will be able to implement the philosophy we want for the players so they are ready for the first game of the season,” explained Ismael.

“It will be important for me to understand how the group of players here play and think on the pitch, and they will be learning a new way of playing.

“It will be a long season but pre-season is going to be crucial for us. The boys will need to trust the process and our purpose is to take care of the players and see them compete together.”

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