West Bromwich Albion are on the brink of securing Premier League safety for another season as they look to continue their fantastic turnaround under boss Tony Pulis.
However, the man in charge is not resting on his laurels going into tomorrow’s game against Queens Park Rangers. The Baggies welcome QPR to the Hawthorns knowing a win will push them even closer to the safety mark, whilst pushing the R's closer to a swift return to the second tier of English football.
Yet former Stoke City and Crystal Palace boss Pulis knows his job in the Black Country is far from done as we approach the end of the season.
Speaking to the press ahead of tomorrow’s match, as relayed by ESPN, he said: “It is a good football club, a wonderful football club. It has got everything in place. It has gone a little bit off the rails the last two or three years, I don’t think anybody can argue with that, but it is just getting it back on the right track if we can.”
Change in fortune
The turnaround since his arrival following the 1-1 draw at West Ham has been remarkable. Tomorrow’s opponents were one point and a place above the Albion upon Pulis’ arrival but now sit 11 points below the midlands club.
The upturn of form for Albion has coincided with the decline of QPR. A run of nine games without a win following their 3-2 home win against the Baggies led to the resignation of Harry Redknapp. Chris Ramsey has since been tasked with the difficult challenge of keeping the club in the Premier League but has lost five consecutive matches.
However, Pulis has no sympathy for the man in charge but rather feels it is a fantastic chance for Ramsey to prove his managerial credentials. He said: “He has got a fantastic opportunity.
“To manage a Premier League club, to be given the opportunity within to manage a Premier League club he is a very, very lucky lad and he has got make a fist of it and that is what Chris will try to do I am sure.”
Turning things around
The Albion have been on a rocky road since the departure of Steve Clarke in 2013 and flirted with relegation last season under the stewardship of Pepe Mel. Consecutive home wins against QPR and Leicester City could all but guarantee their safety with six games still left to play.
Under Pulis the club have picked themselves up and dusted themselves down, losing just once in seven home games, and will be hoping to open the gap between themselves and the dreaded drop zone to double figures with a win against Ramsey's men.
The tracksuit and baseball cap wearing boss will have a big summer on his hands as he tries to rebuild the club into a capable top 10 outfit, but he knows there is still a job to be done to avoid any late season drama as the campaign draws to a close.
He said: "Speaking to the powers that be over the past month or so I think the most important thing is to stay focused."