Steve Bruce: Players must live within hour of training ground

Bruce took over as West Brom boss in early February

Bruce took over as West Brom boss in early February

WEST BROM manager Steve Bruce has said all his players must live within an hour of the training ground from next season - although he will continue to commute from his home in Cheshire.

Bruce targeted promotion when he took over as manager in early February, with the club sixth in the Championship. However, they are now 13th and out of the play-off picture and Bruce has said things must change.

“We have too many people travelling and that cannot be good for you," the 61-year-old said. "That is not good for you as a professional. I’ve pointed that out. And going forward that is the way we will look at it. They have been positive towards that change. I think they understand my feelings on it.

“I have told them all. Where we are going to finish in the league is not good enough. I have put forward what I would like to do next year – that is a rebuild of the squad. And the players that are here – along with the ones we bring in – have got to commit.”

He added that having “eight, nine, 10 travelling away” did not help team spirit and that spending hours in a car “catches up with you and probably takes a little bit of your career."

However, Bruce did admit he would not be relocating, saying that the situation was different for managers compared to players.

“[People] are going to throw it at me and say: ‘Are you going to relocate?’ But it doesn’t work with us, when we sign a contract we usually get sacked. For the players it’s difficult. You can have an apartment around the area. But you have to be here the majority of the week.”

In 2014, Leeds owner Massimo Cellino also insisted that all his players must live within the city itself.

"Next season I do not want one single player who lives outside of Leeds, no way,” the Italian said. “That is mandatory. Last year there were players who were coming late to games. Next year before a home game the players will stay together, have dinner together and go to the game together.”

However, the rule was never enforced and it is unclear how Bruce plans to do so at West Brom.

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