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Why latest club news shows West Brom have learned their lesson: Comment



The international break is not a popular period amongst many fans of Championship football as it signifies a two-week period without games.

However, clubs may look at it in a more positive way as it allows many of their players to have a break, gives players time to recover from injury and coaches time to work on particular aspects of play.

This break also appears to have allowed multiple clubs to get some business done and there have been a number of announcements about new contracts being signed over the past week.

West Bromwich Albion announced on Wednesday that 18-year-old goalkeeper Josh Griffiths has signed a new three-year deal at the Hawthorns.

The news, while perhaps not as exciting as Leeds United’s Kalvin Phillips announcement on Monday, is positive for the Baggies for a number of reasons.

Firstly, it keeps a young player, who is highly-rated by both West Brom players and coaches, at the club and secondly, it shows they have learned from their mistakes this summer.

In a transfer window that saw some real positives, such as the signing of young defender Semi Ajayi and the new contract for Rekeem Harper, there were also some disappointing turns for the Baggies.

Amongst those were the exits of some promising young academy talents, who left the club after seeing their contracts expire to join some big clubs elsewhere.

In July, the Baggies saw 16-year-old Louie Barry turn down a contract offer to join Barcelona on a three-year deal.

Barry is, according to his new club, “considered one of the best young players in English football” and had impressed for both the Baggies under-18s and the England under-16s, including grabbing the golden boot for the latter at a UEFA tournament last November.

Due to him leaving at the expiration of his contract, West Brom are understood to have received just £235,000 in compensation.

At the start of August, West Brom also saw 17-year-old Morgan Rodgers turn down a new contract at the club and join Manchester City.

Rodgers is an England under-17 international and another highly-rated young player. This time the Birmingham club received a more significant amount of compensation, reported to be £4 million, but it meant another academy product leaving.

In truth, the Baggies were lucky to keep Harper, who was out-of-contract in the summer and is believed to have had offers from a number of Europe’s big clubs, including Liverpool and Juventus.

Locking down Griffiths, who is understood to have been chased by at least one Premier League side, on a long-term deal ensures they can hold onto another of their academy graduates and shows that they have learned from the summer’s mistakes by getting their business done early and not allowing a similar situation to develop.

Bristol-born, London-based sports journalist at Snack Media. University of Brighton and NA graduate

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: Why latest club news shows West Brom have learned their lesson: Comment

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