Valerien Ismael impressed by West Brom attitude

New boss Valerien Ismael says he has been impressed by the way Albion's players have taken on board the instructions that come with his counter-pressing philosophy.

Valerien Ismael head coach / manager of West Bromwich Albion (AMA)
Valerien Ismael head coach / manager of West Bromwich Albion (AMA)

The Baggies head coach is known for his high-intensity style of play – with those principles bringing him success at LASK and Barnsley.

It's a different style to what Albion played under former boss Sam Allardyce who liked with mix pressing with regrouping behind the ball when out of possession.

But while Ismael's ideas are new to Albion's squad, the boss has been impressed with the way the players have taken them on board.

"For sure it is something different for the players," the Frenchman said.

"It’s another way to play and train.

"But the first day here gave me a great feeling – that we are able to speed up the process with the guys.

"They are all very intelligent, they reflect very quickly. You explain things one time and then you see it on the pitch.

"That has given us a good feeling.

"We will need all the pre-season games to improve the team and after that we will know how long it will take for certain players to compete.

"But at the same time, we have to be ready for the first game against Bournemouth.

"We have to find the balance between making the right decisions, speeding up the process and finding the right players."

Ismael insists for his team to be able to play with the intensity he craves, Albion's players will need support from Albion's passionate fans.

"Our way to play, with the support from our fans, that combined with that intensity it could be something massive," he added.

"Last season that emotional connection was missed.

"But to have that support, especially at home, will be so important.

"We need to build a strong home team cable of beating anyone."

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