Among an eight-strong group of teams who will be striving to fight off relegation in the new year, West Brom face a key January window.
The imminent arrival of Tony Pulis however provides those survivial hopes with a timely boost and an immediate impact in the transfer market will bode well for the club. Holding on to their best players, namely Saido Berahino, and making subtle improvements to a wafer-thin squad are naturally the priorities for the former Crystal Palace manager.
What they need
Like many sides in the bottom half, West Brom need to turn urgent attention to their forward line. Only one player other than Berahino has scored more than a single goal this season. Adding bodies throughout the squad remains a vital necessity, with several players having been almost unchanged so far this campaign.
Who could join?
Kris Commons has been linked with host of Premier League clubs, West Brom among them, but a more realistic signing comes in the form of Arsenal's Joel Campbell, who seems certain to leave the north Londoners this month. Links with other players are few and far between - but expect the rumour mill to be in overdrive come the final two weeks of the window.
Who could leave?
Berahino's form and England call up has seen several of the Premier League's big wigs linked with a move for the 21-year-old. Irvine has issued a hands off warning to their rivals but with the Baggies prone to a fire sale don't be surprised to see the forward wearing the red of Arsenal or Liverpool before the end of the season.
What the manager has said (before he was sacked)
"It wasn't possible to do all the homework in the summer that we'd like to do because of the circumstances," said Irvine.
"I had suddenly landed in this job, there were 13 players who had gone and there was a great big hole that needed to be filled as soon as possible.
"I would hope that in future transfer windows there is a much more joined-up approach than was possible in this one."