West Brom will look to recruit a manager with Premier League experience in their battle for survival – even though experience may be an overrated concept.
The Baggies sacked Tony Pulis on Monday after a dismal run of two wins in 21 games, culminating in a 4-0 defeat to Chelsea on Saturday.
It left Albion a point above the relegation zone and the club acted by ending Pulis’ reign of nearly three years.
Sam Allardyce and Alan Pardew have already been linked to the role and Premier League know-how is key in Albion’s thinking, Press Association Sport understands.
Northern Ireland boss Michael O’Neill is not a contender for the job and Albion’s stance of preferring top-flight experience would appear to rule out Aberdeen’s Derek McInnes, a former West Brom player.
Owner Guochuan Lai watched the Chelsea defeat after flying over from China for a pre-arranged trip.
Lai, who bought the club last year, has flown back to China and will be aided by chairman John Williams during the manager search.
The owner trusts former Blackburn chairman Williams and will not be swayed by a big name.
Assistant head coach Gary Megson, a former manager who returned to the club in the summer, is in caretaker charge ahead of Saturday’s trip to Tottenham.
Pulis succeeded Alan Irvine when the Baggies were a point above the relegation zone in January 2015, eventually leading them to 13th.
They finished 14th in 2015-16 and came 10th last season, but failed to win any of their final nine matches, and Pulis defended his record in a statement released via the League Managers Association.
“Over the last three seasons we have achieved a great deal and I am proud to have managed West Bromwich Albion,” he said.
“Our final league position in the last three seasons has represented the accomplishment of our targets as a club; sustaining our status in the Premier League and delivering stability, throughout the club’s transition of ownership.
“We enjoyed a fantastic season last year, finishing 10th in the Premier League for only the third occasion in Albion’s history and finished as the top midlands team for only the second time since 1967-68. I strongly believe that this group of players can return to this level of performance and finish in the upper reaches of the Premier League.
“This season, expectations have risen and although we are disappointed with some of our results, one thing I would never question is this group’s work ethic and application.”