Dowling leaves West Brom as club 'reassess football operation'

Dowling was formerly Sporting Director of Watford and Nottingham Forest 

Dowling was formerly Sporting Director of Watford and Nottingham Forest 

WEST BROM Sporting Director Luke Dowling has left after three years at The Hawthorns as the club “reassess how our football operation functions”.

The 42-year-old former Watford and Nottingham Forest Sporting Director joined the club in September 2018. The Baggies currently find themselves in a state of flux, having been relegated from the Premier League and without a manager.

Dowling’s first choice to succeed Sam Allardyce - who left at the end of last season - was Chris Wilder, only for owner Guochuan Lai to veto the move. Talks then broke down with former Huddersfield boss David Wagner, who is now expected to take charge of Young Boys in Switzerland.

West Brom Chief Executive Xu Ke said: "I would like to thank Luke for his work behind the scenes at The Hawthorns during his three years with us.

“Luke's departure provides us with an opportunity to reassess how our football operation functions and I will provide a further update on this subject in due course."

The 33-year-old Chief Executive, who took the helm last summer, admitted that the club had “faced setbacks” in their search for a new Head Coach.

"I would like to thank supporters for their patience during what has been a frustrating period for us all,” he said. "Like all fans, I understand having a vacant Head Coach position can lead to uncertainty, but this is not a simple search, and we must appoint the correct person, who shares our passion for the future of the football club.

"Our aim remains the same - to earn promotion back to the Premier League as soon as possible. We will have a healthy budget in order to succeed in the Championship and, with the right person as our Head Coach, I believe we will have a strong opportunity to be promoted.

"As we all know, the Championship is a relentless, difficult league, but we have succeeded there before, and I am hopeful we can do so again.

"While we have not yet formally offered the job to any candidate, it is fair to state we have faced setbacks and, with that in mind, I do not think it is wise to set a precise deadline by which an appointment will be made.

"As I have referenced already, the quality of our next Head Coach is of far greater importance than how soon they can be appointed.

"We are working tirelessly behind the scenes to identify the right person and we will share this with you as soon as an appointment has been made."

Dowling is a former semi-pro player who had coaching and scouting roles at Wimbledon, Crystal Palace, Portsmouth and Blackburn before becoming Sporting Director of Watford, Nottingham Forest and then West Brom.

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