West Brom’s protracted search for a manager may be finally drawing to a close, with former Werder Bremen boss Thomas Schaaf reportedly set to take the reins before the weekend.
This news may encourage interested punters to wade in on the 52-year-old’s odds of 1/2 to become the Baggies’ next permanent boss, with his nearest rival 5/1-rated Gianfranco Zola.
For a man who has spent every day of his working life under Werder Bremen’s employ – he played 361 times for them, managed their under 17, 19 and reserve sides, as well as assisting, then managing the first team – making the switch to the Premier League is a bold move, while there’s definitely an element of risk attributed on West Brom’s behalf also, but a strong trophy-winning record in Germany underlines his managerial talent.
A Bundesliga triumph is supplemented with three German Cup successes as well as a Europa League final appearance. In addition to these silverware accruing expeditions, he qualified for five straight Champions Leagues, six in total, and all of this stemmed from his stepping in to save the club from relegation in the 1998/99 campaign.
Having experienced trophy-winning and a relegation dogfight, Schaaf’s CV should definitely impress those heading up the recruitment at the Hawthorns, who are trembling at the prospect of dropping into the bottom three after an uninspiring first half of the season.
Another positive factor that should endear him to the West Brom powers-that-be is his ability to develop young talent, particularly in the playmaking faculty.
He helped mould magicians of Diego and Mesut Ozil’s ilk from unknowns and sold them on at exorbitant profits from the shillings that he signed them for.
For a club of the Baggies’ stature, this asset will most particularly appeal while the attacking football the coach is renowned for makes him a perfect fit to manage the current team; his odds-on price should definitely be snapped up.
All odds and markets accurate as of publication’s time and date
Fancy a flutter? Sign up today to claim up to £50 in free bets.