Fabian Huerzeler’s dad is a high-flyer whose talents in his chosen profession are in demand internationally.

That explains why the man understood to be the leading contender to become Albion’s new head coach was born in Houston, Texas.

Prof. Dr. Markus Huerzeler, who comes from Switzerland, is a top dentist, one of the world's leading specialists for complex implant treatments.

He spent two years in the early 1990s working as an associate at the university of Houston.

His wife, Dr Barbel Huerzeler, is also a skilled dentist.

One of their sons, Adrian, is a pilot.

The other has just set St Pauli soaring to the Bundesliga.2 title at the age of just 31 and is understood to be the focus of Albion attention as they look to replace Roberto De Zerbi.

Huerzeler himself is an admirer of De Zerbi’s work.

He watched as many Albion games as he could while the Italian was in charge and took in the 4-2 win over Tottenham on a trip to England while the German league was on its winter break.

At the same time, he employs his own ideas and it would appear is a bit more focussed on keeping clean sheets than was the man who took Albion to sixth place in the Premier League.

"There are currently three coaches whose ideas the whole of Europe is looking at," a well-known German second division coach told the Abendblatt newspaper in Hamburg recently.

"Roberto De Zerbi, Xabi Alonso and Fabian Huerzeler.”

The great thing about Albion’s most recent coaching appointment, when they replaced Graham Potter, was they did not go for a Potter replica.

Similar ethos, of course, in many ways but also seize the chance to take the next step and add something new.

It could be that Huerzeler offers the best of Potter and De Zerbi. We might find out.

He demands an enormous amount physically from his players.

St Pauli were the strongest running team in the German second division and also completed the most intensive runs.

With the ball, regulars at St Pauli saw a team which, according to reporter Tim Eckhardt, was “most clearly modelled on De Zerbi”.

Eckhardt, who specialises in tactical analysis, wrote: “This is shown, among other things, by the provocative waiting of the central defenders when they have the ball, caressing the ball with the sole of their feet to lure the opponent.

"St. Pauli want to deliberately trigger the pressing in order to play in the spaces behind them.”

They did so partly with defensive midfielders disguised as full-backs.

Huerzeler likes his St Pauli side to attack in a 2-3-5 or 2-4-4 shape.

Central midfielders, especially top scorer Marcel Hartel, move forward.

The full-backs drift into the No.6 midfield positions.

Centre-forward Johannes Eggestein drops into the No.10 area and the wingers stay high and wide.

So it all makes sense as we await the next move in this summer of change.

Huerzeler has not been a top-flight head coach and has been in charge of second-tier St Pauli for about as long as De Zerbi had the reins at Albion.

If Tony Bloom, Paul Barber and David Weir – but, ultimately, Bloom - believe he can do the job, the next question will be not whether he wants the job but whether he wants it enough to leave what he has created.

Huerzeler’s horizons are broad. He still raves about family holidays in a caravan in the breath-taking national parks in the west and midwest of the United States.

If he ever has a family of his own, he wants to travel there again.

He had a stint as an intern at MLS runners-up Philadelphia Union with their German sports director Ernst Tanner.

His sporting dream is the Champions League.

He took a long time to agree his new deal at St Pauli, waiting until it was pretty certain they would be in the top flight before signing.

Would he leave that now, having just put pen to paper?

Those who follow the club say he is emotionally invested in their progress.

In that respect, it almost feels a bit like the situation with Kieran McKenna at Ipswich.

But then he might fancy getting his teeth into a challenge overseas if the chance comes.

Like father, like son.