Improvements need to be made to the West Bromwich Albion squad if they’re to launch a significant promotion push next season.
While the failed Valerien Ismael experiment hasn’t helped, the limitations of the current group have been clear to see during the 2021/22 campaign and solutions need to be sought in the summer.
Beating Leeds United to the signing of John Swift could help Albion solve one issue in particular – the lack of final third contributions from their midfielders.
According to the Express&Star, the Baggies have regularly been sending scouts to watch Swift over the past few months with Steve Bruce planning a squad overhaul in the summer.
The 26-year-old is out of contract at Reading in the summer and on course to leave the Championship club as a free agent while it is understood it seems highly likely he will be an Albion target in the upcoming window.
One of West Brom’s issues this term has been a lack of creativity and contributions in the final third from their central midfielders.
Alex Mowatt leads the way with four goals and two assists, which is fairly meagre by his own previous standards, while Jake Livermore (two assists), Jayson Molumby (one goal), Taylor Gardner-Hickman (no goals, no assists) and Adam Reach (one goal, two assists) have contributed just two goals and four assists between them.
Swift, meanwhile, has enjoyed a hugely impressive campaign in a struggling Royals side.
Functioning as either a central midfielder or in the number 10 role, he has scored 11 times and provided 13 assists this term – more than all of Bruce’s current midfield options put together.
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The Albion boss has spoken about looking to add more flair in midfield and the 26-year-old would certainly provide that, though bringing him to The Hawthorns could prove difficult.
Swift may feel he’s earned the right for a chance in the Premier League but if top flight offers aren’t there, West Brom need to make sure they’re well placed to snap him up.