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Axed Clarke's 'deep regret'

Steve Clarke has spoken of his disappointment at being axed as West Brom manager, insisting he had "unfinished business" at the club.

Last Updated: 15/12/13 at 19:13 Post Comment

Steve Clarke: Replaced Roy Hodgson at West Brom in 2012

Steve Clarke: Replaced Roy Hodgson at West Brom in 2012

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Clarke was sacked on Saturday evening after a fourth successive defeat left the side just two points above the drop zone.

He had guided Albion to eighth in the Premier League last season - their highest top-flight finish for 30 years - and suggested expectations this term had been too high.

In a statement released through the League Managers' Association, Clarke said: "I believe I have unfinished business at West Bromwich Albion Football Club so it is with deep regret that I was relieved of duties as head coach last night.

"I could not have been better prepared for my first job in management after over 14 years' coaching experience learning from some of the great managers in the modern era.

"It was certainly a challenge to succeed Roy Hodgson, having been appointed England manager, after he successfully guided the club to a 10th-place finish in 2011/12, after only securing their Barclays Premier League status the year before.

"It goes without saying that I was extremely proud to have built on that achievement by securing the club's highest ever finish in the Barclays Premier League and for over 30 years in the top flight by finishing eighth in 2012/13.

"Going into this season expectations were high, perhaps unrealistically so, but with it still being only our fourth consecutive season in the top flight, our primary objective had to be to establishing our status in the Barclays Premier League.

"I was, and remain convinced that we were well placed to achieve this aim."

Roberto di Matteo is the bookies' favourite to return for a second spell at The Hawthorns but Sky sources understand club chiefs do not yet have a replacement in mind.

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terling needs to be told though that upon entering the Arsenal squad he will re-enact the final scene from Highlander where he will be thrown around a warehouse by cartoon dragons and then be a mere mortal that will only ever spend three to four weeks a season playing football and the rest on the physio's bed. There can be only one.....player available at The Emirates.

rodger's gusset
Arsenal interest in Sterling

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he game changed in our favour when Carrick came on. We were able to play further up the pitch due to having a player who can give and go with the ball and keep possession. Yet barkley made some runs and Townsend scored a good goal but carrick's inclusion and chiellini's withdrawal made the biggest difference to the flow of the game

ricky villa
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N

o, you've not silenced anyone Andros, i'm afraid. We know you can score a great goal, and it's really handy to have your direct running and willingness to shoot on the bench. But until you can do the other things expected of a winger (beat the man, put a decent cross in, stay wide etc) then you can't expect more than a regular cameo. Wonderful goal though, what a hit! No wonder Buffon wanted the shirt.

badwolf
Townsend: I've silenced critics

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