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Pulis hails Francis factor

17 January 2015

Francis' experience will be key for Albion

TONY Pulis believes Gerry Francis 'first class' experience of top flight football will be crucial to Albion's Barclay's Premier League challenge.

The former Tottenham Hotspur and Queens Park Rangers boss linked up with Pulis and Dave Kemp last week, joining Albion as a coach and re-establishing a long-standing relationship from their time together at Stoke City.

Pulis, who is preparing his side for Monday night's game at Everton, said: "Gerry was always joining us. That wasn’t a question. Gerry Francis has been with me for seven years and Dave Kemp for about 13 years. 

"Gerry brings a wealth of experience and does a lot of different things. A lot of things we do together that we haven’t got time to do. 

"His analysis of games and his experience of the Premiership is absolutely first class.

"For the six years at Stoke, plus the year at Palace he was always there.. on a part-time basis but he is very, very important, so there was never a question of him not coming with me."

Albion have yet to appoint a new first-team goalkeeping coach, with Professional Development Phase Goalkeeping coach Mark Naylor assisting Ben Foster and Boaz Myhill.

Pulis joked that Naylor might stay in the job longer than he expects if Albion pick up a good result at Goodison Park.

“We are working on bringing in a goalkeeping coach," said Pulis. 

"We are hoping by next week we will have that in place. I am a bit superstitious so we will probably wait until after Monday, hopefully having got the clean sheet. 

"We have the Under-21 goalkeeper coach taking Ben and if it goes on again (clean sheets) he’ll most probably get another week and another week - I’m hoping we don’t replace him! 

"But no, that’s me just being superstitious. At the moment I am in no rush because of the two clean sheets we got (against Gateshead and Hull)."

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