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The West Brom job was on Slaven Bilic’s list – and managing them is “a f***ing privilege”

Slaven Bilic

The Baggies’ Championship campaign gets underway with a trip to Nottingham Forest on Saturday night, which marks a return to the English game for the Croatian.

Bilic led West Ham from June 2015 to November 2017, before getting the sack less than half a year into a spell in charge of Saudi Arabian side Al-Ittihad last season.

He was appointed by West Brom earlier this summer as the Hawthorns outfit look to find a way back to the Premier League.

Speaking to the Telegraph, Bilic explained that in April he wrote down the names of eight European clubs he would realistically like to manage and who might be interested in hiring him.

“I signed (for West Brom) and before I came here I was cleaning out my backpack,” he said.

“And I pulled out the piece of paper and I had written on it ‘West Brom’. So I showed it to my wife, Ivana, and said, ‘Look at this’.

“In life you can moan about the quality of the food, about the weather, it’s too hot, whatever. But it’s f***ing great. It’s great.

“Yes, ‘chairman this and this’ or ‘club this and this’ but I’m a football manager. I’m the manager of West Bromwich Albion and, hey, it’s bloody great! It’s a f***ing privilege!

“Of course it’s hard but everything that’s good costs effort, energy. Am I happy? Of course I’m happy.”

The 50-year-old, a former West Ham and Everton defender, explained that he has just one target on his mind for the 2019/20 season.

“To be fair, the club did not say to me, ‘we have to go straight back to the Premier League’, but West Brom should challenge,” he said.

“West Brom needs to be there until the end. West Brom’s ambition cannot be mid-table. They didn’t bring me for that.”

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