The Queen's Park Rangers chairman Tony Fernandes has once again given his backing to manager Mark Hughes, insisting he remains "the right man" for the job despite the club sitting bottom of the Premier League.
Rangers have collected only two points from their opening seven games and again paid the price for some woeful defending during Saturday's 3-2 defeat at West Bromwich Albion. Yet Fernandes remains fully committed to supporting Hughes, who is convinced QPR's fortunes will improve once his heavily overhauled squad has had time to bed in.
Fernandes tweeted yesterday: "For all QPR fans. Fans who analyse properly. I am not changing anything. And all shareholders agree. No team except the first game [a 5-0 home defeat to Swansea] has outplayed us. We need a consistent four defenders not changing every week especially right and left back. Mark is the right man."
Meanwhile, Steve Clarke said that he is not surprised by his West Bromwich side's superb start to the season but has played down talk of challenging for a European spot.
"It takes a lot to surprise me," Clarke said. "I knew when I came into this job that I was inheriting a really good group of players. I knew the club was on the up and for me it was a fantastic opportunity.
"To start this way is really pleasing. We are only seven games into the campaign and we are not getting carried away – but we can be pleased with what we have done so far."
When asked if a European spot was a possibility, Clarke said: "No. We know what our primary objective is and we're firmly focused on that at the moment. It's to ensure another season in the Premier League. That's got to be the bottom line for the majority of clubs in the league.
"The quicker we get to that objective, then we can start to look and see where we can get to. But we're still a long way from that."
West Brom: FOSTER 6; TAMAS 6; McAULEY 7; OLSSON 7; POPOV 6; MULUMBU 7; YACOB 7; ODEMWINGIE 7; MORRISON 8; GERA 7; LONG 7
QPR: CESAR 6; HILL 4 FERDINAND 5 NELSEN 6 BOSINGWA 6; GRANERO 7; MBIA 6; PARK 6; TAARABT 7; WRIGHT-PHILLIPS; ZAMORA 6
Goals: WBA Morrison 5, Gera 22, Mulumbu 85. QPR Taarabt 35, Granero 90. Subs: WBA Jara 7 (Tamas, 45), Lukaku 5 (Long, 63), Rosenberg 5 (Odemwingie, 63). QPR Traore 6 (Hill, 45), Mackie 6 (Wright-Phillips, 59), Hoilett (Mbia, 71). Booked: WBA Tamas, Mulumbu. QPR Ji-Sung, Mackie. Man of match Morrison. Match rating 7/10. Poss: WBA 45%. QPR 55%. Attempts on target: WBA 5. QPR 3. Ref M Jones (Cheshire). Att 23,987.