Clarke wants Baggies to push on

  • Last Updated: December 21 2012, 13:56 GMT

Steve Clarke has warned of the dangers of complacency as West Brom look to ensure their season does not fizzle out after a flying start.

Steve Clarke: Prepares for Norwich clash
Steve Clarke: Prepares for Norwich clash

The Baggies climbed to third place in the Barclays Premier League before a run of one point from the last four games that has seen them drop to seventh position.

Ahead of Saturday home clash with Norwich, head coach Clarke is still happy with the overall picture.

But he knows the importance of West Brom building on their solid foundations.

He said: "We're a long way into the season now, approaching halfway, and we're still in a really good place.

"If you'd said we'd be sitting on 27 points the Saturday before Christmas, I think a lot of people would have accepted that.

"We have to make sure that we don't become complacent because we have a good number of points.

Position Player Score
1 Man Utd 42
2 Man City 36
3 Chelsea 29
4 Tottenham 29
5 Arsenal 27
6 Everton 27
7 West Brom 27
8 Norwich 25

"We have to push the squad and the team and push ourselves forward into an even better position."

Clarke is unconcerned by Albion's goal drought - they have gone three games without scoring - and picking up only one point from the last two home games with Stoke and West Ham.

He said: "We haven't spoken about the goal situation. I've got no concerns about this team and group of players scoring goals whatsoever.

"As for our Hawthorns form, we set out at the start of the season to make it a difficult place for opposing teams to come.

"By and large we've done that this season, and we'll look to continue that."

First-choice goalkeeper Ben Foster is available after being sidelined for six weeks with a groin problem which required surgery.

Clarke said: "Ben has trained well this week, as has Boaz Myhill and Luke Daniels.

"I've got three great goalkeepers, they are all ready and desperate to play, and it will be my choice as to who plays.

"But I've got no concerns over Ben's fitness."

Clarke has been impressed with the form shown in recent weeks by Norwich under Chris Hughton.

He said: "They have been fantastic. Chris has gone in there and done a great job.

"He probably took a few games to get his message over about how he wanted the team to play and approach the games, but since they've picked up what Chris wanted them to do they've been great.

"They defend well, they're strong, they're comfortable in the league and they're always a threat and look like they can score a lot of goals.

"They're also confident. It's a challenge for us but I think it's one we're ready for."

West Brom will be without midfielder Youssouf Mulumbu who serves a one-match ban after receiving five bookings this season.


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