West Brom proved unable to significantly add to the squad who won promotion from the Championship last season though did capture the services of Conor Gallagher.
The Chelsea midfielder – who impressed on loan at Swansea – has since been linked by the Sun (via West Brom News) with the likes of Leeds and Newcastle United despite the Baggies’ struggles this season, such has his been the level of his performance.
Becoming an increasingly integral part of Slaven Bilic’s side, former West Brom striker Kevin Phillips has opened up on the prospect of seeing the 20-year-old stick around.
Speaking to West Brom News, the former England international believes Premier League survival is the only feasible of keeping him long-term.
“It just depends where West Brom are and what the player’s thinking. If you get relegated then the player will want to stay in the Premier League – it happened to me when I got relegated at Southampton,” he said.
“That’s no disrespect to the club you’re leaving but you want to play at the highest level for as long as you can and for every season.
“Gallagher has proven he can play at this level so there’s no surprise that clubs are linked with him.
“If West Brom went down it would be very difficult to keep hold of the player.”
Indeed, with Premier League clubs reportedly keen after a relatively short time of it at this level, Phillips has a point.
Already this season, he ranks second in terms of key passes per game for the Baggies (1.4, via WhoScored) and leads the way for tackles over the same period (4.2) so can clearly operate reasonably well amongst the elite.
At just 20, it’d be hard to see him willingly stay if he was resigned to Championship football again, even if West Brom were to pay the reported £10m fee his parent club are after.
Having played the last five league games in full, he’s looking like a hugely important member of the Baggies’ survival cause. Should they go down, it seems likely that’s all he’ll be.