West Brom part ways with manager Bruce


West Bromwich Albion have parted company with manager Steve Bruce after eight months in charge.

The 61-year-old ex-Manchester United defender left following the Baggies’ home draw with Luton Town on Saturday.
That kept them in the Championship relegation zone, in 22nd, their lowest league position in more than 20 years.

The backroom staff of Steve Agnew, Stephen Clemence and Alex Bruce have also left West Brom, with under-21 coach Richard Beale named interim boss.

Bruce was appointed as Baggies manager on 3 February as part of a change of structure at The Hawthorns that saw the departure of head coach Val Ismael, the appointment of Ron Gourlay as chief executive and club owner Guochuan Lai, the controlling shareholder, becoming Albion chairman.

In his 24 years in management, Bruce has had plenty of success, winning promotion from the Championship to the Premier League four times – twice with both Birmingham City and Hull City.

But, having enjoyed four months off following the miserable end to his time at Newcastle, a job he said at the time would probably be his last, he simply failed to relight the Albion fire.

The Baggies won just eight of his 32 games in charge.

Last Tuesday’s 1-0 defeat at Preston was only their fourth in the league this season. But they have now drawn eight of their 13 league games and won just once.

His final match in charge was a goalless draw at home against Luton, leaving the Baggies eight games without a league victory

Late in the game disenfranchised Baggies fans made their thoughts on Bruce’s position at the club known, with loud chants of ‘Bruce out’ and ‘you don’t know what you’re doing’ heard around The Hawthorns.

After the match, Bruce defended his position following the persistent calls for his sacking.

“I’ve been in this a long, long time. If you’ve been doing it for 1,000 games you’d like to think you know what you’re doing,” he told BBC Radio WM.

“Because I hear ‘you don’t know what you’re doing’, does it mean I’m going to walk out? No is the answer. Whatever happens above me is for other people to decide, I will carry on until I know different – I’m determined to turn the club around.”

The hierarchy at West Brom chose to give the ex-Newcastle, Hull, Aston Villa and Birmingham boss less than two days more in the job.

“The club would like to place on record its thanks to Steve Bruce and his coaching staff for their efforts since arriving in February,” said a statement.

“The process of recruiting a new manager is now under way and an appointment will be confirmed in due course.”