Baggies want to spoil party

West Brom boss Steve Clarke has urged his side to spoil Sir Alex Ferguson's retirement party against Manchester United on Sunday.

Last Updated: 16/05/13 at 16:35 Post Comment   

Steve Clarke: His West Brom face Manchester United on Sunday

Steve Clarke: His West Brom face Manchester United on Sunday

West Brom boss Steve Clarke has urged his side to spoil Sir Alex Ferguson's retirement party against Manchester United on Sunday.

Albion have already achieved their best Barclays Premier League finish and are aiming to break the 50-point barrier and finish in the top eight.

However, after a superb first half of the season, their form dipped drastically over the winter period and has slumped again in recent weeks with three consecutive defeats culminating in a 4-0 loss to Norwich last weekend.

Clarke's men have the chance to end the season in style on Sunday by beating the champions in Ferguson's final match before retirement at the Hawthorns and the Scot is insistent they give a good showing.

"We're not there for a party on Sunday," warned Clarke, who will share a special bottle of red wine with his counterpart after the match.

"Our party will be with our supporters at the end of the game when the players get the chance to thank the fans and the fans get the chance to thank the players for the season.

"That's the only party we're interested in and we'll do what we can to finish on a high.

"We started the season on a high by beating Liverpool and we want to finish on a high against the champions.

"I'd be surprised if Sir Alex was just there to celebrate his last match as a manager. It's about competition and that's what he'll be there for."

Clarke admitted the heavy defeat by Norwich was hard to take and wants more from his men this weekend.

"I'm not hoping for a response, I know I will get one," he said.

"This is a group of players who know how to respond to adversity and know how to get results in the Premier League. That's why they are where they are in the table.

"Everybody is saying about the bad run we're on but you have to have a sense of perspective about what we're doing at this club, and that is achieving year-on-year improvement.

"It reflects well on everyone. The club has a plan and we know how to work. We're trying to build slowly. It's no secret about how we do it, we're not a club to go round throwing lots of money about. We have to be clever and careful how we build the squad and that's how we have to do it again this summer.

"The job next year is to ensure that that improvement continues.

"With a club of our size there will be a dip at some point. The big thing is that our dip came after we had secured our objective of being safe. We haven't been involved in that scrap all season. There needs to be a reality check because this group of players has been really good."

Clarke, whose side currently sit eighth with 48 points, added: "We've been stuck a bit, chasing that target of 50 points. I think for us the season started to peter out when we realised the top six and Europa League were beyond our grasp and the squad was stretched a bit much for us.

"But we can still finish in the top eight and break 50 points so it will still be a good season for us.

"It's been a few weeks since our last win. Too many weeks. But we don't set out to lose games, we want to win."


Get £120 from your free £10 bet with Sky Bet if West Brom win 2-1


Related News

Sky Bet

    • Retrieving latest Sky Bet odds

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

may well get slated by other United fans for this, but out of the three contenders, I'd far prefer Liverpool to win the title. Yes some elements of their fanbase can be a bit OTT, yes they're our biggest rivals and yes it will make our poor season feel even more like the end of an era (Fergie's gone, Liverpool are back on top). However I just have to applaud Brendan Rodgers and the way he's turned Liverpool around in just a couple of seasons. It...

Mike_Christie
Please Stop Telling Us What To Think

H

ooray! We are all excited now, we beat a very mediocre team! With all due respect to WHU supporters, not winning that game shouldn't even be a consideration. This is the problem, there is no winning mentality at the Emirates - we're all congratulating ourselves beating a team that we have a winning record against.

TheWhiz
Wenger hails important win

I

s this meant to be an aspiration for United supporters? Moyes mediocrity strikes again. I see the Bayern boys don't want to sign for him, and his reputation amongst the senior European coaches make other key signings unlikely.

redbornandbred
De Gea's Europa League target

Footer 365

Eden Hazard absent from Chelsea training session ahead of trip to Atletico Madrid

Eden Hazard missed Chelsea's open training session ahead of Tuesday's Champions League clash at Atletico Madrid.

La Liga: Barcelona forward Lionel Messi set to be offered improved deal

Barcelona president Josep Bartomeu insists Lionel Messi will be offered a new contract to keep him at the club.

Transfer news: Dimitar Berbatov wants to stay at Monaco after scoring winner against Nice

Dimitar Berbatov has confirmed he would like to stay at Monaco beyond the end of this season.

Mail Box

'Tactically Inept And Lacking In Belief And Style'

It's fair to say that the 'Moyes Out' brigade is understandably out in force, whilst there are also staunch defences of Mourinho and Arteta. Plus, Liverpool fans can almost taste it.

That's Why We Didn't Want Jose At United

There is plenty of reaction to Mourinho's antics (Isn't that exactly what he wanted?) plus thoughts on Connor Wickham, Fabio Borini, beach balls and Tim Sherwood...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property