Tony Pulis sacking: Why a footballing curse has been reversed
There’s something strange going on between Chelsea and West Brom…
Tony Pulis’s sacking as West Bromwich Albion manager following Saturday’s 4-0 defeat to Chelsea marks the reversing of a footballing curse between the two sides.
Chelsea managers have found the Baggies to be a bogey team when it comes to job safety in the past.
In 2012 a 1-0 defeat at the Hawthorns saw Andre Villas-Boas sacked, while the following season a 2-1 defeat in West Bromwich proved to be Roberto Di Matteo’s final league game.
As Pulis departs, Albion are just a point and a place above the relegation zone after an 11-game winless run in all competitions. Assistant head coach Gary Megson has taken a caretaker role.
After the Chelsea defeat, Pulis defended his record at the club and said West Brom would struggle to get a better replacement.
Tony Pulis has been sacked by @WBA. Looking around at those available the best man to help them stay up could well be....Tony Pulis.— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) November 20, 2017
It’s one thing #WBAFC considering parting company with Pulis, but finding successor not easy. Pearson/Shakespeare? McInnes? Megson?— Henry Winter (@henrywinter) November 20, 2017
However, some thought it was unfair to suggest the sacking was ill-advised given the 59-year-old former Stoke City and Crystal Palace manager’s prior achievements, noting it was as much about what the fans could see on the pitch as the results.
West Brom fans perfectly entitled to want more than what Pulis has been serving up of late. Please stop telling them to be careful what they wish for. They're the ones who have been watching week in, week out— Matt Law (@Matt_Law_DT) November 20, 2017
Farewell, Tony Pulis. If God had wanted us to play football on the ground, he wouldn’t have invented the sky.— Rory Smith (@RorySmith) November 20, 2017
Others agreed a change was needed, suggesting Pulis and the players lacked motivation in recent weeks.
After just 2 wins in 21 Premier League games it’s no surprise Tony Pulis has been sacked by WBA. He seemed to lack motivation, and when your manager openly says he understands if he gets the sack, it’s not surprising the players lost motivation themselves. Change needed.— Jules Breach (@julesbreach) November 20, 2017
And finally, it seems some football fans won’t remember Pulis’s time at the Hawthorns for his football – but rather for his expert raiding of the club shop.
Let’s hope he got to keep the trainers.