Defender Liam Ridgewell today told his Albion team-mates tonight’s clash with Newport County could be the first step towards the best day of their career.
The Baggies take on the Football League new-boys at The Hawthorns in a low-key Capital One Cup second-round clash. But, while tonight’s game might not capture the imagination, former League Cup winner Ridgewell has urged Steve Clarke’s men to think about the possible trip to Wembley for the finalists.
“It is definitely important for us,” said Ridgewell, who won the Carling Cup with Birmingham in 2011. “We won it for Blues when nobody gave us a chance. It’s a big thing and when you get there it’s the best day of your career, especially if you win it.
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“It’s obviously out of the question for us to win the Premier League or get to the Champions League so obviously it’s something we need to look to do well in.
“It’s good to get a medal and it’s a good competition to be in. If some other teams don’t take it seriously maybe it gives us a chance.
“It will be a tough game against Newport and we need to make sure we get past them and do well in the game.”
Newport defeated Brighton in the first round to book their trip to The Hawthorns. And Ridgewell is expecting a spirited performance from last season’s Conference play-off winners.
“I think everyone looks at those first games and maybe thinks they are easy,” said Ridgewell.
“But they’re not.
“You have got to take them as seriously as when you reach the quarter-finals or semi-finals.
“I’ve gone all the way to winning the League Cup and it’s a great cup that takes you to Wembley. We’ll be taking it seriously – and I’m sure the gaffer will be as well.”
Albion (4-2-3-1): L Daniels; Tamas, Dawson, Lugano, Popov; Dorrans, Brunt; Vydra, Rosenberg, Sinclair; Berahino. Subs: Jones, Ridgewell, Mulumbu, Morrison, Roofe, Long, Rose (gk).
Newport (4-4-2): Pidgeley; Pipe, Worley, Naylor, Hughes; Sandell, Minshull, Willmott, Chapman; Zebroski, Jolley. Subs: James, Crow, Washington, Flynn, Jackson, Stephens (gk).