By Jack Cunningham

10th Nov, 2021 | 7:10pm

West Brom manager Ismael provides January transfer update

Valerien Ismael and West Brom are preparing for the January transfer window, and he wants to improve his squad.

Speaking to the Birmingham Mail, the Frenchman revealed that plans are well underway and that he is starting to identify he wants to sign in January.

You would think that a centre-back could be on that list after the Baggies received terrible news about Kean Bryan [Joe Chapman].

He said: “For sure, we are intensifying the players, but we have been preparing in the background already; you don’t start one week or two weeks before the window opens.

“After six months, you have got a better picture. January is the next chance to pick the next right player. For sure, at the end of the season, next summer will be [a] massive window for West Brom, but at the minute we are moving in the right direction with our thoughts, players are improving, and with the academy players, I think we are on the right way at the minute.”

Good update from Ismael.

It is clear from these comments that the Frenchman knows that his squad isn’t good enough or is missing certain players.

He has worked with them for a long time now, and we are 17 games into the season, so he must know exactly where he wants to strengthen his squad.

The Baggies are short at centre-back with a couple of big injuries and are also short upfront, where they are crying out for a big striker who can lead the line.

Jordan Hugill has plenty of Championship experience and works hard, but he can’t be relied upon to consistently stick the ball in the back of the net.

Ultimately that is where West Brom are lagging behind their rivals, and Ismael probably knows that.

We would be stunned if they didn’t try and sign another forward in January, and it is good to see Ismael doing early preparation.

In other West Brom news, Neil Warnock had one last pop at Baggies fans on talkSPORT.

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