KEIR RADNEDGE in LONDON: West Bromwich Albion are a club in need of all the good publicity they can get. So what did they do? Barred local and national newspapers from the press conference following the sacking of manager Alan Irvine.

Only rights-holders – ie cash-paying broadcasters – were allowed in.

A club about to appoint a fourth manager in just over a year is clearly a club in crisis.

Perhaps West Brom wanted to keep the latest appointment disaster a secret; perhaps no-one wanted to front up to serious questions; perhaps whoever is in charge was so embarrassed he or she just wanted to scuttle away as fast as possible.

Tony Pulis, rather than Tim Sherwood, is apparently close to being brought in as firefighter to stop the relegation roof falling in after the failures – for whatever reasons – of Steve Clarke, Pepe Mel and Irvine.

By shutting out the majority of the media to the fall-out presser the club were, in effect, shutting out the fans.

Albion are 16th. Hence not in the relegation zone (albeit one point above it). But they need to rally as much support and sympathy as possible to fuel the fight for Premier League survival.

No use shooting the messenger.

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