Appy Baggies return talk heats up

Michael Appleton. Picture: Robin Jones
Michael Appleton. Picture: Robin Jones

Speculation linking Michael Appleton with a West Brom return was today gathering pace.

The Pompey boss has become a key player in the betting markets for the Hawthorns hot seat following a flurry of activity yesterday.

But Blues administrator Trevor Birch has insisted there has been no approach from any clubs for the 36-year-old.

Appleton became a surprise name in the frame to succeed Roy Hodgson after he was confirmed as England’s new manager.

Odds on Appleton taking the role quickly shortened yesterday following another round of talk he was in the running for the post.

There has been a host of managers including Chris Hughton, Jose Camacho and Claudio Ranieri who have topped the betting lists for the West Brom job so far.

Appleton has now assumed a major role, with reports of ‘significant’ bets being placed on him to land the job.

Sources in the midlands believe Wigan boss Roberto Martinez is a favoured choice among the West Brom hierarchy.

The chances of them landing the highly-regarded Spaniard appear unlikely, however.

Former Chelsea boss Ranieri is understood to have been interviewed for the job.

Pompey administrator Trevor Birch stated there has been no official move from the Baggies for Appleton.

He said: ‘There has been no developments on the links with West Brom. Nobody has spoken to me about it.’