Following Sam Allardyce's decision to part ways with the club last month, West Bromwich Albion have struggled to find a replacement for him despite being linked with a host of names.
It seemed as if the Baggies were on the verge of appointing David Wagner as their new manager last week after holding talks with the 49-year-old.
However, the former Huddersfield Town boss opted against a move to the Hawthorns in order to become the new manager of Swiss side BSC Young Boys.
Chris Wilder was ruled out of contention for the job following owner Lai Gouchuan's intervention whilst Frank Lampard, Roy Hodgson and Michael Appleton have all decided to steer clear of this particular vacancy.
Whereas a recent report from Football Insider touted Derek McInnes as a potential successor to Allardyce, TEAMtalk revealed that Henan Songshan Longmen manager Javier Pereira was also a front-runner for the job.
In a fresh twist in this ongoing saga, the Baggies are now seemingly trying to convince Valerien Ismael to become their new manager.
According to The Athletic, West Brom have opened talks with Barnsley about appointing the 45-year-old as their new boss.
Considering that Ismael's current contract at Oakwell is set to run until 2023, the Baggies will need to reach an agreement with Barnsley over a compensation fee which is understood to be in the region of £2m.
After being drafted in as a replacement for Gerhard Struber last October following the Austrian's decision to swap the Tykes for Major League Soccer side New York Red Bulls, Ismael completely transformed the club's fortunes in the Championship.
With Ismael at the helm, Barnsley defied all expectations by reaching the play-offs last month where they suffered a narrow 2-1 aggregate defeat at the hands of Swansea City in the semi-final of the competition.
GIVEMESPORT's Joshua Cole says...
This could turn out to be a shrewd move by West Brom as Ismael clearly knows exactly what it takes to achieve success in this division and thus could be the ideal man to lead the club into a new dawn.
Whilst the Baggies will have to pay a considerable fee in order to lure the Frenchman away from Oakwell, it may be worth splashing the cash as there is every chance that they could thrive under his guidance.
During the previous campaign, Ismael managed to win 23 league games as Barnsley averaged an impressive tally of 1.90 points per game in the second-tier.
Providing that Ismael is able to build upon this particular statistic next season at the Hawthorns, he could potentially guide West Brom to an immediate return to the Premier League.
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