Burrows stays in charge for trip to St Mary's

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The Independent Football

The West Bromwich Albion caretaker-manager Frank Burrows is set to stay in charge for the game at Southampton on Saturday.

The West Bromwich Albion caretaker-manager Frank Burrows is set to stay in charge for the game at Southampton on Saturday.

Burrows was given the role for Albion's home Premiership fixture with Chelsea last weekend as chairman Jeremy Peace continues his search for a successor to Gary Megson. And the indications are that Burrows - who was Megson's No 2 - will still be at the helm against the Saints, for whom he worked as a coach 20 years ago.

The Baggies have announced that 60-year-old Burrows will again stage the pre-match press conference at The Hawthorns today.

Peace is determined to bring the right man to West Brom as Megson's replacement in the attempt to stay in the Premiership and Glenn Hoddle remains the clear bookmakers' favourite although Albion officials have not acknowledged making an approach.

But the fact that the former England coach's first game in charge would be against Southampton is likely to delay a possible move until after the weekend.

Hoddle would expect a volatile reception on his return to the club he acrimoniously parted company with to move to Tottenham three years ago. The Saints chairman Rupert Lowe wanted Hoddle to return when Gordon Strachan's reign ended in March but such a move did not go ahead after strong opposition from fans.

Strachan, Bryan Robson and Gérard Houllier remain the other candidates on the short list being drawn up by Peace. Albion will be searching for their first away win of the campaign when they travel to St Mary's, and they will be boosted by the return of the central defender Darren Purse.

Purse, who was signed from Birmingham City in the summer, impressed in the early part of the campaign but he has had to serve a four-match suspension after his sending-off against Fulham. The 27-year-old could come straight back into the side to bolster a defence which has conceded seven goals in successive games against Crystal Palace and Chelsea.

The defender Thomas Gaardsoe admitted: "In the last two games we have conceded seven goals which is rubbish. The last two games have been a big disaster defensively.

"I haven't looked good myself in the last few games and I know I'm capable of better. I've just got to work hard to put things right."

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