By Joe Ellis

22nd Jun, 2022 | 8:10am

West Brom have one year to make changes to academy to prevent downgrade

West Brom have only got 12 months to make changes to their academy to maintain their Category One status, according to the Express and Star.

The Baggies have been awarded the top status for the 2022-23 campaign after worries that they would be downgraded but the award has come with recommendations from the Premier League.

Albion have just 12 months to put those recommendations into place and failure to do so would result in the club only being awarded Category Two status.

Under normal circumstances, the Premier League hand out their statuses for clubs over a three-year period but when it is debatable whether a club can maintain those standards, a temporary, one-year decision can be made.

The Express and Star understand that West Brom are set to act quickly to make these changes and the confidence remains that they will be granted their three-year Category One status at the 2023 audit.

Vital

It is imperative we are able to keep our status among the top 24 academies in the country because the benefits are simply enormous.

Not only do our under-21, Under-18 and Under-16 sides get to play in the official Premier League competitions against the very best, but we also get more compensation should any of our youngsters leave.

We can also use this status to sign players of a certain age from further afield than we otherwise would be allowed to under normal regulations.

All of that is going to help the first team eventually but all we need now is a manager capable of trusting the kids in the academy to perform in the Championship.

We’ve already seen Taylor Gardner-Hickman break into Steve Bruce’s side and cement his place in the midfield so who is to say that others impressing in the youth setup aren’t to follow him into the Baggies senior squad.

In other West Brom news, we need to pull our finger out and start making progress to sign this workhorse midfielder as Premier League sides take an interest.

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