Valerien Ismael to give West Brom players a chance

Valerien Ismael will spend the next fortnight assessing his squad before deciding where Albion must strengthen this summer.

New signing for West Bromwich Albion Alex Mowatt  & Valerien Ismael head coach / manager of West Bromwich Albion.
New signing for West Bromwich Albion Alex Mowatt & Valerien Ismael head coach / manager of West Bromwich Albion.

Midfielder Alex Mowatt last week became the new Baggies boss’ first signing when he joined on a free transfer after leaving Barnsley.

Further additions are expected before the Championship season begins on August 7 but Ismael will first take a closer look at the players already at his disposal.

That includes several members of the club’s youth team, with the Baggies players told to prepare for a “new way to train and play” under the Frenchman.

“It’s important to first of all give everyone a chance. At the minute I need an overview of the squad,” said Ismael.

“What type of players are they and can they play like we want? The academy players, the young players, are they able to have that intensity?

“We need a couple of weeks to have a clear overview before we make our selection, whether we need to add something from the academy for example.”

Ismael spent Friday touring the offices of the Albion Foundation before later meeting club legends Chris Brunt and Tony Brown at The Hawthorns.

The 45-year-old is eager to create a culture of togetherness at the club which he then hopes will translate to results on the pitch.

Ismael has promised to bring more intensity to Albion’s play as he explained: “The first thing is hard work. We need to create a work ethic for each other. If one doesn’t, then we are dead.

“We need that mentality. We work together and we need to implement that.

“The intensity is the most important thing. We want to dominate our opponent with our intensity. For sure, we have the quality in possession and we want to become a complete team.

“I think promotion has to be the long-term goal. At the minute it’s important for me to implement the philosophy.

“When I implement the philosophy we need to have the right players to play how we want. When we get that we will be ready to compete.”

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