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Report: Pepe Mel in talks to lead the Baggies

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RCD Espanyol v Real Betis Balompie - La Liga

<> at Cornella-El Prat Stadium on September 1, 2013 in Barcelona, Spain.

David Ramos

Sky Sports is reporting that there may be a Spaniard in charge at the Hawthorns, as former Real Betis manager Pepe Mel is in talks to lead West Bromwich Albion out of their surprising relegation battle.

Mel has only been out of work since Dec. 2, when he was sacked by Betis after a big derby loss to Sevilla. He had lead the club out of the second division and into La Liga, where the qualified for the UEFA Europa League last season.

The Baggies sacked Steve Clarke after four successive defeats found the club just above the relegation zone, and caretaker manager Keith Downing has led West Brom to two 1-1 draws, one at home versus Hull City on Dec. 21 and another at White Hart Lane against Spurs on Boxing Day.

Downing is expected to be in the manager’s seat again for Saturday’s relegation test versus West Ham. It’s a 7:45 ET kickoff at the Boleyn Ground and will be live and online via NBCSN.

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