sport

Mel plays down Anelka sacking

West Brom boss Pepe Mel played down the importance of Nicolas Anelka's sacking after his side's 2-1 win at Swansea.

The enigmatic French striker was sacked by the Baggies on Friday night after Anelka initially announced he had terminated his contract with the club in the aftermath of his ban for the 'quenelle' gesture.

However, after Youssouf Mulumbu's goal gave Mel his first win as West Brom boss at Swansea, the new Baggies manager was keen to focus on his current crop of players.

"After a win it (the Anelka situation) is not important. What is important now is the fans, the players and the club," Mel told Sky Sports.

"I am pleased for the fans and the players, and Swansea are a big team.

"We needed to win."

Swansea were good value for their lead after dominating the first half, but the Baggies were a different side after the break, and turned things around to earn a vital three points to ease the pressure on Mel.

"At half-time we spoke about the poor play, and the second half we came out better," Mel added.

"We were strong together, and were compact. I think this is the right way.

"I am head coach, and when the head coach does not win, it is always the same."