West Brom defender Jason Davidson says he is still short of fitness after admitting he let himself down in the Baggies’ defeat at Swansea City.
The Australia man believes he and fellow left-back Sebastien Pocognoli will alternate this season, after Davidson replaced the injured Belgium international in the starting line-up at the Liberty Stadium.
Davidson, aged 23, made his first Premier League start in South Wales but disappointed in the 3-0 defeat.
He had impressed as a substitute seven days earlier at Southampton and making his first start in the Capital One Cup at home to Oxford United.
He said: "The thing that surprised me the most is that in the Premier League you are up against players who will test you to the limit for 90 minutes.
"Right now I am feeling the effects of not having a pre-season under my belt. After playing 120 minutes against Oxford in mid-week, I went into the game against Swansea a little short on fuel.
"Missing a pre-season didn't help and I am now just trying to catch up - being in camp now with Australia I will, hopefully, get a couple of games under my belt and pick up some match fitness.
"Against Swansea, I was disappointed in myself. My mind knew what I wanted to do but my body just wouldn't follow.
"That's just fatigue and while there are no excuses you can only give what your body allows - and the rest is out of your hands.
"It’s a sign that I need to get Premier League match fitness ASAP. Three's more pressure and intensity than in Holland because you have the best of the best.
"You can do well one week but you need to be able to do it consistently against some of the best players in the world."
Pocognoli had started the first two games of the season after figuring throughout pre-season but was injured late on at Southampton.
Davidson said: "During the season we will be be vying for the starting spot and with neither of us having Premier League experience, we'll be bouncing off each other.
"The club has signed two left-backs, because they need depth and neither of us is probably ready right now to play every game."
Meanwhile, West Brom’s Capital One Cup third-round tie at home to Hull will take place on Wednesday, September 24 (8pm).Subscribe to our Newsletter