West Brom Opinion: Why the Baggies should make a move for Reece Oxford?
According to a report from the Telegraph, West Brom are keen to sign West Ham defender Reece Oxford after his proposed move to Augsburg fell through.
The 20-year-old burst onto the scene in 2015 as West Ham’s youngest ever debutant, but spent last year on loan at Augsburg after failing to hold down a place in Manuel Pellegrini’s starting XI.
The report claims that Augsburg wanted to make Oxford’s move permanent for around €4.5million but the player is wanted to have a relegation clause inserted, after the Bundesliga club finished just four points above Bundesliga’s relegation play-off spot.
As per the Guardian, West Brom have appointed Slaven Bilic as their new manager. The former West Ham tactician has signed a two-year contract to become the permanent successor to Darren Moore, who was sacked in March.
The 50-year-old’s most recent venture, with Saudi Arabian club Al-Ittihad, lasted just five months and he was dismissed in February earlier this year.
However, Championship football is a different kettle of fish and Bilic has to be up for the task. He will need to rebuild the team to make them worthy enough to mount a promotion push next term.
West Brom will need to fully back their newly-appointed manager in the ongoing transfer window and help him find the right profile of players that can come in and make an immediate impact at the Hawthorns.
The Baggies had an awful defensive record last season, shipping in as many as 62 goals in the Championship. That clearly suggests where Bilic should prioritise focusing in this transfer window.
The likes of Ahmed Hegazi, Kyle Bartley and Craig Dawson blew hot and cold, while the expected departures of loanees Tosin Adarabioyo and Mason Holgate to their parent clubs Manchester City and Everton respectively should leave the club a bit thin at the back.
West Brom need quality and competition for places at the back and bringing in Reece Oxford would be the right step.
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Oxford’s career has not gone according to the plan and a move to West Brom would give him a chance to put it on track.
The 20-year-old is a young, talented and industrious player, who is equally adept at playing in central defence and defensive midfield. He is extremely composed on the ball, possesses good strength and aerial ability and is tenacious in the tackle.
Slaven Bilic knows Oxford in and out, having handed the player his debut when he was just 16 at West Ham. The 20-year-old needs to revive his career and reuniting with his former manager at West Brom would do him a lot good next season.