Pepe Mel admits his future will not be decided until West Bromwich Albion’s fate is known, but he hopes to remain in charge of the club next season.
The Spaniard was appointed as the Baggies head coach in January following the departure of Steve Clarke the previous month, but he has so far been unable to lead them to safety. Of the 11 Premier League matches he has been in charge of, Albion have won just twice, drawing five and losing four. Indeed, it took him eight games to register his first three point haul, and has yet to taste victory in front of the Hawthorns faithful.
A 1-0 win at fellow strugglers Norwich City last weekend has boosted their chances of avoiding the drop, although they are level with the Canaries on 32 points which is only five more than Fulham who occupy the final relegation position. All this has leads to an uncertain future for Mel, but the 51-year-old hopes to guide the Baggies to survival and be given a pre-season for an opportunity to implement his own plans for the team.
“Shortly, in the near future, I’ll have a meeting with West Brom but until it’s totally clear about where the club is going to be, the meeting will not take place,” he said in the Birmingham Mail. “The message I’d like to send to the fans is that I’m very happy at West Brom and I’d be very proud to lead the club next season. For me it would be important to be here for pre-season, put together my ambitions and start from scratch.”
One advantage Albion have over the clubs they are fighting to avoid the drop, is that they have a game in hand. However, of the six matches they have left to play, they host top-six hopefuls Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday afternoon, and they also face the potentially daunting task of trips to title favourites Manchester City, as well as Arsenal, who are determined to clinch their customary place in the UEFA Champions League.