There was a positive atmosphere around the Hawthorns in the summer of 2017 after Tony Pulis had led West Brom to a tenth place finish in the Premier League.
Could they go higher the following season? That was certainly the aim and the way the club set about their summer business suggested much the same.
£44million was spent on new recruits in the summer including the likes of Oliver Burke and Jay Rodriguez who both arrived for over £1omillion each, as well as Kieran Gibbs and Yuning Zhang who cost a combined £12million.
But it was a loan arrival that got the fans the most excited.
This is FLW Rewind where we take a look back at a big decision made by a club, analyse the initial reaction and document what happened next.
— West Bromwich Albion (@WBA) August 30, 2017
The man in question is, of course, Polish international and Paris Saint Germain midfielder Grzegorz Krychowiak’s loan move to the Hawthorns.
Krychowiak had built a strong name for himself at Sevilla and earned a £25million move to PSG in 2016, but after an underwhelming first season with the Parisians was loaned out to the West Midlands.
Having seen his performances with both Sevilla and PSG in Europe’s elite competitions this was a real statement of intent from the Baggies, and one that really excited the fans:
Absolutely bloody amazing… Welcome to the Hawthorns! ????????????????
— Bashers (@Bashie1970) August 30, 2017
Absolute class signing that is, well done Albion
— Stuart Hunt (@huntywbafc) August 30, 2017
I bloody love you
— Lewis Botfield (@lewis_botfield) August 30, 2017
Welcome to our club Grzegorz, cant wait to see you in the blue and white stripes
— John McGuire (@jonimac61) August 30, 2017
It was unsurprising to see the Pole go straight into West Brom’s starting line-up and put in a series of solid if uninspiring performances early on.
But a slow realisation began to dawn on the fans that this season was not going to go anywhere near as smoothly as the previous one had.
Krychowiak did not experience a win with the Baggies until his 17th appearance for the club in a 2-0 win against Brighton and Hove Albion.
He continued to start for the club but continued to make very little difference to the club’s results or performances. It was always going to be hard to do so from holding midfield.
West Brom were rock-bottom of the Premier League from February until the end of the season and with Darren Moore’s arrival, Krychowiak was dropped, only to make fleeting appearances.
Despite looking like one of the signings of the summer, the PSG loanee was nowhere near influential enough as the club dropped out of the top-flight.