It’s been a summer of discontent for West Bromwich Albion fans and the bad and concerning news at the club was arriving like buses until we got a whiff of some future hope with the appointment of new head coach Slaven Bilic, and his arrival may give rise to a further boost.
With Technical Director Luke Dowling giving a pretty in-depth interview at the back end of May as he discussed some of the clubs’ future plans, one of the things he stated was that we wouldn’t be going back in to try and do a deal for on loan Newcastle United striker Dwight Gayle and the reaction within the fanbase was pretty obvious given how key the 28-year-old had been for us with his goal return of 24 in the 2018/19 campaign as we fell at the Semi-Final stage of the Play-Offs.
Over the weekend the Daily Mail carried a claim stating that Bilic had told the Board he was reluctant to lose Gayle, so if Newcastle ever finally seem to bid for Salomon Rondon, he wants Gayle as part of the package – with the wages helping to balance themselves out.
Gayle’s importance needs no overstating, especially with fears now surrounding the future of Jay Rodriguez given the £5million contract clause claims.
Fans were naturally and understandably pleased with the news.
I think I would cry with happiness if this happened https://t.co/vHcQi3unbj
— libbymiahatcher (@libbymiahatche1) June 16, 2019
With Bilic and then if this happens it would show intent and restore some faith in the board
— Luke Stokes (@lukestokes84) June 16, 2019
I think I would sell my soul to the Devil if this happened????
— Pete???? Caldicott (@musicmonkey1966) June 16, 2019
Remember this tweet, Gayle is coming back. #wba
— Joe (@JoeDunn_97) June 16, 2019
I hope so I thought he was out the question but ????????
— michael (@michael31772444) June 16, 2019
I hope this isn't a wind up after all that was said about a deal previously…but then if it comes off, and with Slav in charge… ????????⚪
— Andrew Morris ???????? (@AndyMoz18) June 16, 2019
Don’t do this to me, I’ve still not totally got over the Lukaku farce #WBA
— SemperTeFallant (@MattRowley83) June 16, 2019
— Adam George (@AdamGeorge_) June 16, 2019
If we somehow get Gayle back tho ????
— Dyl (@WBA_Dyl) June 16, 2019
It might not be that simple though, as the E&S’s Matt Wilson has already poured cold water on the speculation.
As for the Rondon factor, Albion's negotiating stance isn't that strong because he only has one year left. They need to sell (or risk him leaving for nothing next summer). Requires an auction to get it to the £16.5m release clause. He has no intention of returning.
— Matt Wilson (@mattwilson_star) June 16, 2019