West Bromwich Albion are the 7/4 favourites to sign John Terry on a free transfer from Chelsea when the transfer window opens at the end of the season. But Tony Pulis should not be looking to add the former England ace to his ranks, and here’s why.
For starters, were he to sign for the Baggies, there’s simply no way he doesn’t make the Welsh boss’ starting XI.
Bear with us…
That means he’ll likely play alongside the most used defender currently available to Pulis at the heart of West Brom’s defence.
Step forward, Gareth McAuley.
The Northern Ireland ace recently signed a one-year contract extension at the Hawthorns, but here’s the thing…
Were Albion to sign Terry, by the time the festive period comes around next season, their centre-back partnership will have a combined age of 75.
Yep, you read that right.
There’s nothing wrong with a bit of experience – but you have to draw the line somewhere, and you’d have to say the arrival of Terry would be a step in the wrong direction for Albion.
Some may raise their eyebrows at this claim, given that the 36-year-old has a Champions League, four Premier Leagues and five FA Cups to his name. But it’s true. It’s hardly building for the future.
Pulis does have a habit of adding Premier League veterans to his ranks though, signing Darren Fletcher and Jonny Evans for the Black Country outfit in recent years.
They joined the likes of Ben Foster, James Morrison and Chris Brunt at the Hawthorns, and with Terry’s arrival, the Baggies could field a team with an average age of 31.
As the rest of the division continues to put faith in youth, it seems Pulis is intent on taking another approach.
Granted, it’s worked for much of this season, but next time out his squad will be another year older.
And if you wanted another stat to show just how little faith Pulis has in youngsters, then you should read on…
Jonathan Leko and Sam Field are the only two players currently at Pulis’ disposal under the age of 26 to have played for West Brom this season.
They’ve notched up 268 minutes of top-flight football combined this season from 33 of Albion’s games. On average, that’s eight minutes per game. Four minutes each.
With all of that in mind, it would hardly be a shock to see Pulis bring Terry in during the pre-season.
But we don’t think it would be the right decision for club or player.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing