I was right to ring West Brom team changes, says Steve Clarke

Steve Clarke today insisted he will have funds to strengthen his West Bromwich Albion squad in January.

West Brom 0 Stoke 1

The Baggies head coach defended his raft of changes for Saturday’s Stoke defeat, in which he made six changes for the Hawthorns clash and saw his side beaten 1-0 as the Potters continued their dominance of the fixture.

But Clarke, who drafted Steven Reid, Goran Popov, Zoltan Gera, Markus Rosenberg, Graham Dorrans and Shane Long into the team, insisted he was right to show faith in his squad for Albion’s third game in eight days.

“The changes are there to be made,” said the Scot. “I can’t keep saying I’ve got a good squad then pick the same players every week.

“Then I become a liar. I can’t tell the players I trust them all the time and then not do that. It was a week to use the squad. I was pleased with the changes. I thought the boys that came in did well in what was not a pretty game of football.”

With just a month to go until the January transfer window, the Baggies are braced to lose Youssouf Mulumbu and Peter Odemwingie to the African Cup of Nations for up to a month in the new year.

Chelsea also have an option to recall Romelu Lukaku and Clarke insisted the Baggies have not ruled out dipping into the transfer market, although the club are expected to have a low-key transfer window.

“We’ll deal with the January window when we get there,” he said.

“There’s a possibility we will lose a couple of players to the African Nations and we could lose players to injury, but when we get closer to the end of this month we’ll start to make decisions.

“I haven’t really discussed with the chairman the way forward in January. That’s why we have a technical director. We have spoken about what we might need to do in January and if the chairman, Dan Ashworth and I decide we need to strengthen the squad then we can do that.”

Clarke also insisted he was right to keep key midfielder James Morrison as an unused substitute.

“The selection process over the course of the three games last week was designed to try to freshen the team up,” he said.

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Comments for: "I was right to ring West Brom team changes, says Steve Clarke"

Roger Hartill

The team selection was wrong and the fans knew it even if the coach didn't. We lost 2 of our best creative players in Morrison and Brunt and the attack carried no threat until we changed it. In the first half we were awful going forward and rarely created anything. Our best effort was the free kick that the Stoke Goalie turned around the post. We allowed Stoke to bully us again and had no protection from a poor Referee and his officials. All of the players worked hard but we never looked capable of winning.

Jack ♣ Hat.


I think Steve right to make changes mate. I mentioned recently that Morrison needed a well earned rest, then he was injured. I say the same about others needing rest. Steve has to manage twenty five players not twelve and the works cat. These squad players need game time (as you well know) to keep them in good nick for the games ahead, also gives Steve food for thought as the transfer window looms. We won't spend a lot in the window but if we can do deals and stiffen up the squad then so be it. Back to normal next match. Come on you BAGGIES.

We don't want player fatigue like that lot down the road, do we,☺☻☺☻s.


Brad Frazier

at the end of the day we have been lucky and we dont deserve to carry on this form, lets just get behind the manager with his amazing team changes, and lets carry on being the 2nd best team in the midlands, obviously behind WOLVERHAMPTON WANDERERS, because they are the best lets face it, they are creepy sick

CantelloRocket 78


how many wolves fans does it take to change a light bulb?


One to try climbing up the table, and six to catch him when he inevitably falls back down towards the basement........:-0)


A good point on the African Nations Steve, but I disagree with a change of 6 players. You need players who are used to the bruising of Stoke, not Rosenburg and Popov for pete's sake.

However I will support you whatever!


The manager was right to take out six of his poodle players he knew stoke would kick and hurt them so he put on his reserve dross to save the poor lambs from getting hurt,well good news he has got about 50 quid to spend in january good luck

Cyril Randle

Oi were no' aware they 'ad farrrms in Alverwumpton Emma. How be the village idiot this marnin' ? Or be that He ?

We Only Need One Half!

Cyril have you forgot that's where the Dingles are from, Emma Dale.


as i said village idiots


The village idiots all moved to Sandwell

Kev in Mallorca

Heaven forbid Cyril! a man of your stature calling someone an idiot, what is the world coming to? Max tell him!


Cyril Randle

Kev, one has to maintain a measure of decorum on these boards and in every class there was always a 'clown', self appointed of course. Emma fits the bill perfectly.

Jack ♣ Hat.

Ommer Nail,

Just think, we could buy five "Custard bowls" or get into your new antique shop seven times and still put a quid in your charity box, on the other hand we could blow it all on a match ticket (to see a grade A horror show) and one of Jezzez pies. ☺☻☺☻s.


Lone wolf

Seems like' one of them' that are never wrong eh ?

I remember Ian holloway a couple of seasons ago spewing the same thing when Blackpool fell from top five to bottom three and eventually relagated.

Not that i hope that happens to you of course.

All i hope, is that you get what you deserve.


There, and not a word about about mr. Ridgewell............

Apart from........

If he was at our place, he would have used £50's.

Cyril Randle

Why's that Lone, bigger bums ?

Lone wolf

Long live cyril randle.

Its been hard work cyril, havin a pop at birminghams elite while the Black country babbies have been strugglin.

So you will excuse me if i see a chink in the corrugated armour and try to squeeze in.

Post more cyril. Always a good read.

CantelloRocket 78


You don't need to tell us about the 'babbies'-

all we've heard from the recycled mol. this season is a load of cryin' an' screamin'.........

We Only Need One Half!

Bit rich coming from someone who's happy to be associated with a team who's fans think its ok to brick pensioners, attack their own players holding babies, and, just this week, paint bombing the managers car,

and your trying to take the moral high ground??? remarkable!

emma dale

not trying to take the high ground .......he already has....lol

Jack ♣ Hat.

One half,

You have missed out "Spitting on their Sugar Daddy".

I'm glad to hold my head up and say ALBION fans have never resorted to that sort of behaviour. There again class shows.



Yes we will get what we deserve, a top 10 finish in the prem. Good to see you lot have got what you deserve, an average leccy league team. Merry Christmas!.

Richard Brennan

“The selection process over the course of the three games last week was designed to try to freshen the team up,”

Failed on several counts.

I like Steve Clarke and he is a great coach but this is not the first game where selections/changes have resolved in dropped points.

Taking Long off at 70 mins in several games has seen us sit back and ultimately concede.

In saying that; it was Stoke and we know what always happens against Stoke.



I think we look a better team with Long upfront, but I recently heard, correctly or incorrectly, that he's managing a hamstring injury, which might explain why he's often taken off.

I think over the course of the season, in the wider context, Clarke deserves a lot more credit than criticism.


Bubble burst? we we're never in a bubble you idiot we are 5th and were are wolves? you moron!



Jack ♣ Hat.

Omma Nael,

Yo cor argue wi stewpid posts con ya, expeshully wooden uns loik yo.


CantelloRocket 78

Emma Roid-

I think that 'bang' you heard was probably your only brain cell explodin'.........?

emma dale

actually some of your more dimwiited mates claimed you were aiming for europe before the swansea game as you were on a roll.....so you were in a bubble.........tis a pity.......arsenal next who were given a footballing lesson from swansea......remember them?

Cyril Randle

yes Emma, we played them and lost last week and we remember Arsenal too. Does your memory stretch far enough back to remember Wulfies playing them ? What ? Only last season ? Seems like forever and may well be in future.

CantelloRocket 78

Emma Roid-

to paraphrase Jasper Carrott-

the only way wolves players would see action in Europe is if someone declares a third world war.........

emma dale

did'nt know that the 3rd world war was in 1981????

psv eindhoven, we lost but, you will find that was a euoropean competition.

and the tescos next trip to europe?

ciggy and beer trip to calais in june....lol

CantelloRocket 78

Emma Roid-

I did say IF there's a 3rd world war, but as I said earlier, now yer brain cell has exploded it must be hard to read properly.

You also put too many O's in European-

probably because you see a lot of 0's in wolves scoring record........

SC Baggie

Sorry SC .....you got it wrong for me. Since when has Rossenburg earn his place (Don't say on the training ground because it cant be disproved and training is not the same). This was a great chance to go 3rd and consolidate not a time for whole sale changes......try these players for unimportant cup games. It does not make you a liar to play your best team 'THATS YOUR JOB'. You are not there to please people and be their friend.........study your fellow Scottish manager Fergie, not even great players get picked if they don't perform. Managers often talk about getting the winning habit......we just lost ours.

Jack ♣ Hat.


calm down mate, we lost one nil to a Rugby team. What's with the aggro?. Hope we don't go on a nine game win-less run like that lot down the road and down in the Championship.



Stop all your moaning and be thankful we're not faced with the problems they have down the road-some people are NEVER satisfied.


Coming from down the road it is interesting to see the same moaning, whining comments being made. You have a lot to be proud of this season so enjoy it please.

I actually came on here to wish all the best to your masseur Derrick Jones. Keep fighting Derrick and best wishes to you and your family.

Cyril Randle

Well said Stevepats. You're more like the sensible Wulfies I know. Bill Shankly once said 'Life or death, football is much more important than that'. For once, Bill got it badly wrong.


So true mate, so very true. Best of luck for the rest of the season.


Thought that Morrison was unlucky not to start, but we've got to trust the Manager.

Jack ♣ Hat.


I'm glad to see Morrison given a well earned break. Maybe Long could do with one, I know he shares with Lukaku but he does half work hard when he in out there. Jonas could do with a sit back shortly. Nothing like a revitalizing break mate and giving other a runout, we will feel the benefit in the long run. All the best.



Nice to see so many wulfies on here acting so chipper - gives the samaritans a welcome day off for once........ I hear Stale's favorite group is UB40 - he particularly like the song 1 in 10.

Re Ridgewell - it was a staged photo between 2 mates.... he obviously wasn't "using" the notes as the Glorious and ever accurate Sun would have you believe. If Ballotelli had done this I bet the Sun would have given it a cheeky "look what he's done now" humourous slant. Double standards (as usual).

Brummie roader Ryan

1 in 10 ha ha class.

And I completely agree the point about Ridgwell if it was Balotelli most people would of laughed about it

Kev in Mallorca

Apparently he was taking the ssip out of his mate after he had just won a bet between them.



actually his fav group is abba, money,money,money, it ai'nt funny in ridgwells world....lol

CantelloRocket 78


Aaah, Kenny!

We were expecting you and your 'usual suspects' friends, it's most welcome, we need plenty of hot air blastin' about in this cold weather, and on the rare occasion that wolves actually win a game, you all come outta the woodwork.

Now you love talkin' about the past, you usually remind us about Woking at least once a week-

so if you have such a good memory, you might be able to recall the last time wolves won a game before dispatching those very sad championship strugglers Bristol City......?

You might need to consult the history books.........

Quinton Rob

I thought, with the exception of Rosenberg, the players who came in did well. I would always pick Reid ahead of Jones when fit and Popov had a good game. It looked like being a 0-0 draw and probably would have been but for the substitutions and change in formation. I'm not complaining that Steve changed it in an effort to win the match but it left us more exposed at the back. Stoke had a couple of breaks prior to their goal which should have been a warning but we continued to press for a goal and were caught on the break. Olsson and/or Myhill should have done better, neither being one of the 6 changes. Let's recognise Stoke's pressing and organisation. They are not an entertaining side to watch but they got the result. There were shades of the European Champions League final where the anti-football side won. Enough of the navel-gazing. How many Baggies fans would have expected the points tally and position at this stage in the season? My message to Steve and the team is keep doing what you're doing.

Kev in Mallorca

At last somebody sane has posted,except the goal was purely down to Olsson.



Lone Wolf, if he was at your place, it would have been 50p coins!.

Right decision, its a long season.

Cyril Randle

It was painful playing Stoke and almost as painful watching. I have spent most of my life in science of some type so I have to pretend that there's no such thing as luck and as for superstition, utter nonsense of course. But I'll tell you something,

my navy blue pants were shoved straight in the washing machine, the Aussie blue hat relegated to the bottom drawer. As for all the other navy blue things I wear...., UGH !

Incidentally, why after 2 defeats do we all know better than Steve Clarke ?

A goal is scored when someone in the attacking team does something better than someone in the defending team. It really doesn't have to be anyone's fault.

We Only Need One Half!

Cyril, regarding Stoke, losing the battle to them is nothing new, but neither is winning the war. Finish above them yet again come the end of the season, I will settle for that.

Cyril Randle

Wonoh, we are getting it right in every facet of the club as far as I'm concerned, we've even paid all our taxes proving we are honest too. Like you, I'll be there whichever division we happen to be in so it's especially nice when we are playing with the big boys. I expected, and we got, the clever clogs from down the road waiting for that special day when they won and we lost. It doesn't happen often these days so they have a party. Luckily, I know a lot of Wulfies who aren't built that way too and I respect them as they do us.


Actually I think Clarke was SPOT ON, we were going to loose this game either way.

Get real guys! Were still an average side building our success and an expectation to win won't help our evolution.

Stoke are a bunch of thugs and it was needed to to Rest our players (especially fullbacks) and avoid injury (which against Stoke, lets face it is very common)

If look at the games coming up, we are much more likely to pick up points at them with a fully energised squad. Clarke can't say this explicitly but this is what is saying more or less.

Sometimes you have to sacrifice for a better end goal, this has been the way we have developed as a club and I hope we continue to do so.

Anyone who thinks we have achieved 'Big' club status and that we can dictate every game is quite frankly a cretin.

Jack ♣ Hat.


Well said, realistically we are a top ten team. Quietly confident Hmm! I am not sure about the quietly bit.


K Andrews

Just not good enough on the basis that i pay my money to watch the strongest 11 play. Starting to think that our bubble has burst but then again it was Stoke. Clarke needs to bring Ridgewell in line or his antics could further disrupt us when we need to concentrate on staying near the top.


You pay your money, out of choice, but unfortunately you don't get to dictate team selection. I'd say you've had your moneys worth so far..........

Theo K Cokey

After the display, sorry, non-display that Brunt, Morrison and Jones put in at Swansea, I was pleased that Steve rang the changes especially as we all know Stoke are a big side and we needed some extra height at the back to counter their aerial threat. Thought that Reid and Popov were excellent, but I dont think that Rosenberg looks up to Premier League standard.

No bad thing to ring the changes and expect more this coming Saturday when our oponents will have a tad more finesse than Stoke are capable of displaying. My only critisism about Saturday was that we played far too narrow...we needed to test their fullbacks and crosses from out wide were few and far between.

Onwards and upwards to the Emirates where we can knock it about a bit !

Smethwick Lad in the BRE

Awful game. I really don't like Stoke. However, credit where its due. They're very good at what they do. They're very well organised and kept a very tight defensive line.

I thought WBA played OK TBH. Not great but Stoke employ spoiling tack tics and they worked.

As for the changes, I thought all the players that came in did well....other than Rosenburg. Dorrans was in and out of the game a bit but had a spell of about 20 mins when he looked very good. One may argue it needs to be longer

For me, we could've done with more width but I understand that there is a counter view that we needed more guile and creativity to break through the middle but its all about opinions.

All in all, a poor game but we move on to the next game. I have no problem with the result, I'm just very disappointed to lose to Stoke...again...!!!!! Hope losing doesn't become a habit

Ho Hum... we've won 4 of the last 6 and sit 5th in the league on goals scored - or is it alphabetical. Not bad going

Keep it up lads. The season could still be our best for a long time!

Brummie roader Ryan

Time to bring El Ghanassy in to offer us some width?

What's the point in signing him and paying him 15 grand a week if he still isn't "ready" yet?

The lad is 22 he s young yes but he's not a kid.

Boing boing.


Great ay it ...




Merry Christmas to you all as well.


Lets all calm down. Fifth in the league after 15 games. 12 point clear of the Vilaaaaa, 14 point clear of the relegation zone and 10 points off the top.

Kev in Mallorca

I agree Steve, it was a ideal opportunity to rotate, give players their chance and prove you are true to your word.


CantelloRocket 78

Going back to February/March of this year, RH was getting loads of stick about his methods being wrong or unacceptable, yet by May we were riding high, and the man was a hero!!

Steve's been in charge for a career-spanning 15 league games-

he's still finding out about his squad, for heaven's sake we're one point off 3rd place in the premiership, why're some people slaggin' the guy off???

Would you prefer to be 17th in the championship instead???


Losing to Joke is not the end of the world :)


And just to make the point. Only two clubs in the perm' have more points than Albion. Two!


Quinton Rob, Couldnt agree more. Stoke do what they do and are good at it. Whether it is pretty is questionable but they are effective. In SC we trust.

Kev in Mallorca

You've still got the backing of the majority Steve, even the experts who were calling for McInnes to lead us to the promised land, I wonder why they've gone quiet?



January transfer!!!!!! We may have £12m in the bank if some of Sunday's media is true! "Liverpool have advised Shane long's advisors they will be in for him in January" now will the board hang on to him!!!!!

I certainly hope so, but once the player knows, its an issue that he may want to progress (even though our league position is better at the moment!!!) and unrest him.

Jack ♣ Hat.


1/Why would Long want to drop down the league and join a big debt club?.

2/ Why would ALBION accept a paltry £12m for a top striker.

Explain please.



stop all this moaning about Steve Clarke he doesn't become a bad manager over night like he has become a good one either !!



Cyril Randle

TweetyBird, we've got a clock with 12 bird calls on it to greet the hour.

Thank God you're not one of them !

If the Wulfie morons get like this after ONE win in TEN and against the mighty Bristol City, what will it be like if they should somehow win another ?

Jack ♣ Hat.


You seem more like Laughingwolf and just as daft.



K Andrews..

They got all upset when I mentioned a bubble bursting.......

We Only Need One Half!

Cheslyn, if you consider being 10 points of the top of the Prem a crisis, what do you call being the same number of points from relegation into the third tier? apocalypse?

paddock stokie

so stoke go out to kick you and are thugs its a mans game man up baggies your coach made 6 changes from a side that has been doing well recently . So who do you blame , i think he has been found out living off hodgsons legacy


To be fair Paddock you don't watch us every week. Clarke's side has a much-better balance than Hodgson's IMO, we're 5th on 26 points so I'd hardly say he'd been found out. I'd happily bet that come May, despite Stoke having spent tens of millions of their owners money over the last decade, Albion will be in a better position.

We Only Need One Half!

Warren, nothing new there then!

Jack ♣ Hat.


I'll take you at face value.

Stick with Pulis and if he doesn't change that style, you will see who will be found out when referees wake up to the fact he is ruining the beautiful game. He is breeding "Push you pull you and kick the rest" players.



How many Wolves fans would swap places with Albion?

5th place

26 points and 8 wins before Christmas, remind me how this compares to Wolves' tally at the end of last season.

That'll do for me, couldn't care less about anything else.

We Only Need One Half!

remind me how that compares to Wolves ANY season???

Gabby's Elbow


Reality check please!

If anyone had offered us draw's against Sunderland, Swansea and Stoke, I think vitually every Baggies fan would have accepted the 3 points..................however, because we won the Sunderland match, the majority of people seem to think we have "blown up" with the losses to Swansea and Stoke. - we still have the 3 points!

The Stoke game was very predictable.....they bullied us, the ref let them get away with it and they nicked a goal after a mistake by Jonas...they didnt come to do anything other than stop us playing, and with no real width for most of the game, thier plan worked (unfortunately).

Also there is no shame in losing to Swansea, as they proved in thier next game in winning at Arsenal - lets home we can go there and give them a game?

Did anyone see that backpass that the keeper picked up in the first half....or was i dreaming as it hasnt been shown on sky or MOTD?

I think Clarke was right to change the team and my only concern was that he played Rosenberg, and I would have prefered MAF upfront to get into the ribs of Huth and Shawcross.................I havent seen anything in Rosenberg that we havent already got in Chris Wood, and I think we need to be woriied if Long gets injured, or Chelski want Lukaku back?

Anyway, SC knows what hes doing and he'll get us winning more than we lose....................10th or above is progress and we need to remember "what we are"...........

Jack ♣ Hat.


The Dingles are not satisfied as we are not top of the table mate. That is why they come on here to complain. After all there isn't anything going on at the NETTO-GHETTO only their ex-players stuffing them.



We've lost a couple of games - So what!

The disappointing thing is the number of empty seats. It we can't fill the ground now we never will.


Paul - i think it more to do with families struggling to pay bills and buy the kids a few xmas presents rather than results. We have a record number of STH's so those that can afford to follow the club do - the rest have to make decisions based on more than how much they love the baggies !!

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