Kevin Phillips reacts as West Brom-Chris Wilder deal hits the skids

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 is “a little bit surprised” after seeing that West Brom are close to pulling the plug on a deal to hire Chris Wilder as their next manager.

Football Insider reported this week that despite holding “extensive talks” with the former Sheffield United manager, West Brom’s board has “major reservations” about hiring him and are set to turn to other candidates.

That update comes after Mirror reporter David Anderson claimed Wilder would be hired as Sam Allardyce’s replacement at The Hawthorns as long as there were no late hitches.

Clearly, a bump has been hit on the way to hiring Wilder and ex-Albion striker Phillips has tried to make sense of it.

Speaking to West Brom News, he said: “I’m a little bit surprised.

“I’d love to know the reasons why. They may be exploring other avenues and feeling they don’t need to rush into it because players are on holiday at the moment so maybe they want to take more time and get it right.

“I think it is a crucial appointment to stand a chance of bouncing back next season.

“I can only put it down to exploring avenues and talking to various other people. I assume they’ve spoken to Chris Wilder and listened to his interview.

“The season’s only just finished too but I’m sure over the next couple of weeks, I imagine there’ll be an appointment because you’ll then be in the realms of preparing for pre-season.”

Wilder remains the bookmakers‘ favourite for the job at The Hawthorns but Michael Appleton, Frank Lampard and Derek McInnes are also seemingly in the running.

Appleton failed to win promotion to the Championship with Lincoln this season after losing the League One play-off final to Blackpool while Lampard and McInnes are out of jobs after leaving roles at Chelsea and Aberdeen respectively this season.

In other West Brom news, have Albion considered a deal for Rafa Benitez?

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