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Garlick: We're not playing copycat

17 January 2014

Sporting & Technical Director explains his Mel vision

RICHARD Garlick insists there is no question of Albion playing copycat after becoming the latest club to appoint a head coach/manager from La Liga.

Swansea appointed former RCD Mallorca boss Michael Laudrup in June 2012, while Southampton turned to ex-Espanyol chief Mauricio Pochettino 12 months ago.

Both have enjoyed success in their first stints in the Barclays Premier League – but Garlick has stressed those examples played no part in the Baggies decision to place former Real Betis boss Pepe Mel in charge at The Hawthorns.

“We’ve got to be pragmatic about it,” said the Baggies' Sporting & Technical Director.

“This team has been successful in the Premier League in the last three years playing a certain style of football.

“But we felt with Pepe involved, the structure involved, and the good, technical players we’ve got we are able to do it.

“But it will be a pragmatic approach.

“It’s won’t be a revolution in terms of the way we play football.

“It will be an evolution where we’ll work with players we’ve got to bring the best out of them.

“Pepe made it clear he will make gradual changes and will sew in ideas over the rest of the season.”

He added: “It’s important to say we’re not trying to copy anyone else.

“We’re not trying to copy a model of Swansea or Southampton.

“I spoke to Southampton at length about the process they went through when they took on a foreign manager.

“We all agree we would like to see the club progress based on a possession-style of play.

“It’s going to be sustainable in the future, and I think it’s the way football has gone.

“I don’t think you can take away the intensity, passion and desire – everything that’s good about the Premier League.

“But you can change your style gradually to perhaps be more sustainable in the future.

“And we felt the way we play and the way we want our Academy players to play would be based on us having more of the ball.”

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