Valerian Ismael: West Brom will benefit from breaks

Head coach Valerien Ismael believes Albion will benefit from international football taking a break for two months.

WEST BROMWICH, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 03: Valerien Ismael Head Coach / Manager of West Bromwich Albion during the Sky Bet Championship match between West Bromwich Albion and Hull City at The Hawthorns on November 3, 2021 in West Bromwich, England. (Photo by Adam Fradgley/West Bromwich Albion FC via Getty Images).
WEST BROMWICH, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 03: Valerien Ismael Head Coach / Manager of West Bromwich Albion during the Sky Bet Championship match between West Bromwich Albion and Hull City at The Hawthorns on November 3, 2021 in West Bromwich, England. (Photo by Adam Fradgley/West Bromwich Albion FC via Getty Images).

The current international break is the third of the season so far with players having also met up their national sides in September and October.

But once these round of fixtures are complete, international football will undergo a two-month break to allow the players to focus on club duties over the Christmas period.

Apart from the hectic festive schedule, that means Albion will have a full week between many of their games – with fewer fixtures taking place on a Tuesday or Wednesday.

And Ismael thinks that gap between games will benefit this side.

"At least this season is not like last season – last season from December through to March there was a game every three days," Ismael said when asked about international breaks.

"This season we will have more Saturday-Saturday games so we will have a full week to work with the guys and to prepare better for the next game and in more detail.

"I am looking forward to the period now and to stay focused on the job and the purpose.

"For sure we will need to give the players some free time. But I think now it's better to keep our players together – especially the international players.

"The international breaks are never easy because the international players go away and they come back two days before the game.

"It's never easy to prepare for the game. But at least we will have a lot of time with the squad, we will be able to get some players back into the squad.

"We can control more what is happening on the pitch when you play Saturday-Saturday."

Meanwhile, promising Baggies midfielder Toby King has joined Vanarama National League South side Billericay Town on loan until January.

King, who has been a regular in Albion’s Premier League 2 team for the last couple of years, made his senior debut during Albion's League Cup defeat to Arsenal in August.

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