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Alan Irvine lands West Brom job

Alan Irvine had been working as Everton's academy director.

West Bromwich Albion have appointed Alan Irvine as their new head coach.

The former Preston and Sheffield Wednesday manager, who had been working as Everton's academy director, replaces Pepe Mel, who left after the end of a season where the Baggies narrowly avoided relegation.

Former Tottenham head coach Tim Sherwood was also interviewed by Albion but reportedly turned the job down.

The Baggies highlighted the coaching skills of Irvine, who was David Moyes' assistant at Everton before branching out into management.

The 55-year-old has agreed a 12-month rolling contract and will be assisted by former Leicester manager Rob Kelly, as well as Keith Downing and Dean Kiely, who were already part of the club's backroom staff.

Albion technical director Terry Burton told Albion's official website: "I'm delighted we have been able to secure the services of Alan and Rob. With the support of Keith and Dean we firmly believe we have put in place the right coaching team to move the club forward.

"From the outset, we decided to pursue candidates who are renowned for their coaching ability and Alan was very much at the forefront of our thoughts because of his achievements in the Premier League and the high regard he is held within the game.

"In the end it came down to two outstanding candidates for the role. But following a detailed recruitment process we decided Alan and the team around him are best suited to tackle the challenges we face in the Premier League.

"He has a vast knowledge from grassroots up thanks to the roles he has performed during his decades in the game and knows what it takes through good and testing times."

Irvine becomes Albion's third head coach in less than a year, following the reigns of Steve Clarke and Mel, who was only in charge for 17 games.

The Scot, who was first interviewed for the Albion job five years ago, became Preston manager in 2007 and took them to the Championship playoffs in the 2008-09 season.

However, he was sacked seven months later and, having got the Wednesday job in 2010, could not prevent relegation to League One.

Irvine has not been employed as a manager since he was sacked by the Hillsborough club in 2011.

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