Former Aberdeen midfielder Neale Cooper believes Derek McInnes will find West Brom too good to resist if the Premier League club comes calling for the Dons manager’s services.
Aberdeen are bracing themselves for an approach from the Baggies who are reportedly keen on talking to McInnes about the vacant manager’s job at the Hawthorns.
The speculation is nothing new at Pittodrie following a summer approach from Sunderland and three weeks of continual links with the manager’s job at Rangers but Cooper, who played in England with Aston Villa, knows a move to the Midlands would be hard to resist for former Baggies captain McInnes.
He said: “The chance to manage in the Premier League is one nobody could begrudge Derek if it comes his way.
“There were whispers he was in the frame before Tony Pulis was sacked on Monday and while some will question whether he is ready for a job at that level I’d say he could be.
“He played for them, he knows what the club is all about, he’s still loved down there and if the opportunity does come his way I can’t see him turning it down.
“The Midlands is a huge football area in England and Derek would love to manage the only Midlands club in the top flight. Aston Villa and Birmingham City are struggling at the moment and the challenge of managing West Brom is one he would love.
“They are a massive club with a great support.”
Former Everton manager Ronald Koeman, former West Ham, Bolton, Newcastle and England manager Sam Allardyce and Northern Ireland boss Michael O’Neill have also been linked with the job but Cooper believes McInnes’ CV is as good as any of his rivals.
He said: “People may be surprised West Brom are looking at Derek but I’m not. He’s done a great job at Aberdeen and while the other candidates have seen it and done it in English football and have great experience Derek offers something different.
“He has the experience, has managed a team in Europe, taken them to cup finals and he has shown when given time he can build something. He did it at St Johnstone and with Aberdeen.
“He has been in the game long enough to deal with the pressures of English top-flight football and I’ve no doubt he could cut it down there.
“The Premier League is the promised land for any manager, there’s no denying it, and as much as a move to Rangers would be sore to take for Aberdeen fans I don’t think any supporter would begrudge Derek the opportunity if it comes his way.”