Steve Bruce has taken over as manager of West Brom, the club confirmed on Thursday. 

Bruce signed an 18-month contract to replace Valerien Ismael, who was dismissed after just seven months at the helm on Wednesday. 

West Brom have won just one of their past seven games in the Championship and slipped to sixth following a 2-0 loss at Millwall on Saturday, leaving them eight points adrift of the automatic promotion places. 

Bruce, who spent two years in charge of West Brom's rivals Aston Villa from 2016, has been promoted to the Premier League four times in his managerial career and was available after being sacked by Newcastle in October, shortly after the Tyneside club's lucrative takeover.

He has been named manager; Ismael was head coach at The Hawthorns.

"I am delighted to have the opportunity to manage a club that has such great history and tradition," Bruce said in a statement. "It is a club I obviously know well from my time in the Midlands, and I am already relishing the challenge of taking it forward. 

"I did not envisage I would return to management this quickly, but once I got the phone call from Ron [Gourlay, West Brom CEO], I knew I could not resist the challenge of getting this club back to where they want to be. 

"I am coming in with one aim and that is to get Albion to the Premier League."

Gourlay added: "Steve is a highly respected and experienced manager who has an impressive record of earning promotion to the Premier League. 

"His excellent man-management skills, tactical nous, and ability to hit the ground running were among the many reasons we decided he was the man to take us forward.    

"Promotion remains our objective for this season, and we are confident that with Steve leading the club we have given ourselves every chance of achieving that goal."