Exclusive – Irvine not happy with balance of West Brom squad as he eyes more signings

first_imgWest Bromwich Albion boss Alan Irvine admits he is still not happy with the balance of his squad ahead of the opening weekend of the Premier League season.The Baggies, who kick off their campaign against Sunderland at the Hawthorns on Saturday, have made eight signings over the summer, with £10m striker Brown Ideye among the new arrivals.Irvine, though, is keen to take the number of additions into double figures, telling the Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast: “We are still working on the balance. When I came in, the squad had no full-backs and no wide players, with the exception of Chris Brunt, who is not a natural winger but a wide midfield player, or someone who plays narrower.“We are still working on the wide players and we would still like to bring in another striker if we could, but it is extremely difficult completing deals at the moment.”Irvine, who replaced Pep Mel in the Baggies’ hot-seat in June, is set to hand Ideye his debut against the Black Cats, despite knowing next to nothing about the player.The Nigerian barely featured in pre-season after seeing his switch from Dynamo Kiev held up by red tape, and Irvine freely admits he had little say in the 25-year-old’s arrival.“I’m somebody who would always like to watch players before they come in, but we have a different system here,” he said.“My title is head coach, not manager, so that is more of a foreign approach. I am perfectly comfortable with that system. It doesn’t mean I’m not involved in the decisions on whether we sign players or whether we let players go, but it is not the same involvement you might have if you were the manager.”last_img read more