The 2015/16 campaign was a pretty purgatorial one for West Brom fans, with much of the fare served up by the Baggies like watching a marginally speeded up version of coastal erosion.
Needless to say, that, to a certain extent is what you trade for Premier League survival by recruiting Tony Pulis, but even the arch-pragmatist himself might acknowledge the need for a little more creativity in the side next term.
But who should he bring in to remedy the situation? Who should he sell to help finance his manoeuvres and who must he keep hold of at all costs to underpin the new arrivals?
Buy – Ryad Boudebouz (above left, playing for Bastia in April 2015)
Montpellier may have only finished 12th in Ligue last term, but their campaign was illuminated by Algerian international Boudebouz’s freshman year at the club.
Only Angel Di Maria and Zlatan Ibrahimovic managed more assists than his 11 in the division, while he was second to the Argentine for average key passes per game with 3.1, chiefly from a central attacking-midfield berth.
The closest any Throstle got to that in 2015/16 was the two frozen out left-back Sebastian Pocognoli managed in his sole appearance (from the bench), with the 1.1 of Stephane Sessegnon next best.
Sell – Saido Berahino
Surely by now it is clear for all to see that if Berahino is to realise his substantial potential then it is not going to happen at the Hawthorns.
Attempts to broach the impasse between player and club over the course of the last campaign have succeeded in doing nothing more than shaving £10m off the windfall the Baggies can demand for him.
Keep – Johnny Evans
Evans’ showings in marshalling a ragtag and bobtail Northern Ireland back four through two games for just one concession at Euro 2016 have been a timely reminder that perhaps only his form-demolishing fragility has stopped him becoming a truly top centre-half.
Still only 28, it would not be hard to imagine him catching the eye of Europa-League level club around Europe with a couple more assured performances in France, particularly with Germany next up for Norn Irn.