We’re delighted to welcome former West Brom striker Kevin Phillips as our exclusive columnist. Each week he’ll be giving his views on the biggest talking points at The Hawthorns…

Kevin Phillips claims as long as the right people buy West Brom from Guochuan Lai, there’s a reason for supporters to be excited.

On April 4, the Sunday People reported in their print edition that Lai had entered an exclusivity agreement with one interested party who could be keen to keep Sam Allardyce as manager.

Ex-Birmingham Mail journalist Chris Lepkowski added on The Liquidator podcast that the potential buyer wants to agree a structured deal with Lai.

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Phillips’ former club Sunderland was bought by Kyril Louis-Dreyfus in February and having spoken to their supporters, he gets a real sense of excitement.

And the ex-striker hopes that can be the case for West Brom fans too if Lai sells up.

Speaking to West Brom News, Phillips said: “I can only speak about Sunderland supporters and about this guy Dreyfus, they’re excited. Fresh impetus, fresh money, maybe a fresh vision to get in a different direction.

“Ultimately you just want some funds to be made available to improve the squad and ultimately, if West Brom do go down and if they can’t keep hold of their players, can they dip into the market and bring other players in?

“It’s always exciting. And as long as the right people come in, there’s a reason to get excited about it.”

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Lai’s popularity among West Brom fans has plummeted over the past few years and frustrating peaked last summer when the Chinese businessman failed to invest into a squad that clearly needed a huge upgrade after winning promotion to the Premier League.

Although Big Sam has overseen a major improvement since January, Albion’s faint hopes of survival are taking blow after blow due to the surprising form of a resurgent Newcastle.

It’s still inevitable that the Baggies will be relegated back to the second-tier but a change in ownership could be what the club needs to re-establish themselves back in the Premier League in the near future.

In other West Brom news, Keith Hackett wants a key official sacked after the controversy in the win against Southampton.

Be sure to follow West Brom News on Facebook and Twitter for 24/7 updates on the Baggies and more exclusive interviews with Kevin Phillips.

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