Sam Allardyce has decided to step down as head coach of West Bromwich Albion at the end of the season, saying he believes the club need to appoint a more long-term manager.
The Baggies are set to finish the season in 19th place, going straight back down to the Championship, with Allardyce suffering relegation for the first time in his long career.
Despite West Brom’s performances improving under Allardyce, with the 66-year-old installing a sense of stability, he does not believe he is the right man to lead the club going forward and will be helping the Baggies with their search for a new boss.
‘West Bromwich Albion made me a generous offer to stay at The Hawthorns that shows the commitment of an ambitious club,’ said Allardyce in a statement to the club’s official website on Wednesday night.
‘After serious consideration I have decided not to accept that offer.
‘If I were to stay and achieve promotion next season the expectation would be for me to continue for at least another season and, sadly, that is not a commitment I feel able to make at this stage of my career.
‘I believe the club now needs stability and continuity and this would, in my opinion, best be provided by a young and ambitious manager who can get us back to where we should be as an established Premier League football club.
‘I must thank the players and staff, in particular Luke Dowling and Ken [Xu Ke], for their unwavering commitment to a very difficult challenge during my time at the club.
‘This challenge was made all the more difficult, of course, by the enforced absence of the club’s fantastic supporters, some of whom I am delighted were present for our final home game against West Ham United.
‘The club have asked for my opinion on the qualities my successor will require and I have been more than happy to offer my thoughts.
‘The search for my replacement starts after the final game of the season at Leeds United. In the meantime, we will be concentrating fully on the preparation for that game and will do everything we can to finish the season with as many points as possible.’
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