After securing his former captain Alex Mowatt as his first signing at The Hawthorns, West Brom manager Valerien Ismael is now on the hunt for other targets as he prepares his squad for the upcoming Championship season.
It took a while for the 45-year-old to be appointed after Sam Allardyce’s resignation back in May, but it’s an exciting appointment nonetheless and the Baggies are now in a position to bolster their side ahead of a likely promotion push.
The possible departures of Matheus Pereira and Sam Johnstone could put a dampener on their spirits – but as things stand – they are one of the favourites to go back up under a man who oversaw a meteoric rise at Barnsley last season.
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There’s plenty of work still left to do in the transfer market though with several players leaving the West Midlands on the expiry of their loan deals and other players being released.
Let’s take a look at a few recent developments that have happened at The Hawthorns in the last few days, with three potential incomings to be analysed.
Baggies in for Clarke
According to yesterday’s tweet from Alan Nixon, West Brom have entered the race for 24-year-old Brighton and Hove Albion centre-back Matt Clarke as Ismael looks to strengthen his defence.
Clarke hasn’t featured at all for Graham Potter’s side since joining two years ago – but has managed to get two seasons of Championship football under his belt with Wayne Rooney’s Derby County and has impressed the Baggies and Sheffield United – with both clubs in the race for the central defender.
Former Blades defender Kean Bryan emerged as a potential option for West Brom last month – but his future is yet to be decided after leaving Bramall Lane as a free agent under a fortnight ago.
If Sheffield United re-sign Bryan, this could open the door for the West Midlands side to swoop in and secure the Brighton outcast, with their spending power likely to rule former loan side Derby County out of this race.
Chalobah closing in on move
22-year-old central midfielder Trevoh Chalobah is set for a move to West Brom according to the Express and Star, after spending over a decade at Chelsea.
Chalobah was shipped out on loan to Ligue 1 side Lorient last season and made 29 appearances in the French top division, helping his side to stay afloat in the league.
The versatile 22-year-old can also fill in at centre-back and this could come in handy during next season if injuries start to mount up in defence.
As per the same Express and Star report, Chelsea are unlikely to demand a fee for the midfielder but could potentially negotiate a hefty sell-on clause if he impresses at The Hawthorns and moves on to another side.
Chalobah is unlikely to receive many first-team opportunities at Stamford Bridge and with the Blues willing to cut ties with their academy graduate permanently, this could be a deal that suits all parties.
Expect this move to go through very shortly.
Mbaye Diagne offer made
According to Turkish outlet Ajansspor, the Championship side have made a permanent move for former loanee Mbaye Diagne, who has returned to parent club Galatasaray.
The forward joined the Baggies in January for the second half of last season, making 16 appearances in the Premier League, scoring three goals and recording two assists.
His performances have seemingly impressed officials at West Brom and have reportedly made a ‘net offer’ of €5m, €2m away from the Turkish side’s current valuation of the 29-year-old.
He could be a cheaper alternative to fellow target Daryl Dike, who was linked with a move to The Hawthorns even before Ismael’s appointment as manager.
The pair spent the latter part of last season together and the Orlando City striker scored nine goals in 19 Championship appearances, an impressive total.
An £18m price tag was inserted into the 21-year-old’s loan agreement with the Tykes – and this sort of valuation could deter Valerien Ismael’s side from making an offer for him.