Steve Clarke expects response from West Brom after recent stutter

The Baggies visit Arsenal tomorrow

Steve Clarke expects a positive response from West Brom after their mini-slump but insists what they achieve over an entire season is how success or failure should be judged.

The Baggies visit Arsenal tomorrow looking to bounce back from successive defeats against Swansea and Stoke after previously climbing to third spot in the Barclays Premier League.

It has led to critics questioning whether Albion have the credentials to sustain their flying start although Clarke is adamant there have been no idle boasts from within the squad.

Head coach Clarke said: "I'm not looking for a response, I'm expecting it because that's what they've done before.

"We've had two defeats before this season, then we lost two games in the space of four days last week.

"It is not a disaster in terms of the whole picture and what we are trying to do this season.

"It is the Premier League and it is a difficult place to win week in and week out.

"Even the top sides don't win every week. There is no reason to expect you should win every game.

"It's a league where you can have a run of difficult results. Our aim is to make sure we get back on a positive footing as soon as possible with a good performance at the Emirates this weekend."

Clarke added: "We've never said that we are a top-six side, we've never said anything about the team.

"All we've said is that we are a good, honest, hard-working bunch, we know we can compete in the Premier League and we try to do that every week.

"We haven't tried to pigeonhole ourselves at all.

"We are working towards the whole season - not a bunch of five or six fixtures. We work towards the points total for the whole season."

Clarke expects Albion to hold on to their key players during the January transfer window and is reluctant to comment on speculation regarding the future of any of his players.

He said: "I haven't got any thoughts on January. There is too much idle speculation goes around this time of year.

"People are allowed to link one player or this player with the club and it just goes around in a circle.

"If I give credence to every story that comes up, we would be here talking all day.

"As far as I'm concerned, January will take care of itself. I'm happy with the squad I've got. I'll have that squad in January.

"I might lose one or two (Peter Odemwingie and Youssouf Mulumbu) to the African Nations Cup but I'm happy with what I've got here to cover it.

"I don't think anyone is going to be leaving this club in January."

Arsenal have slipped to 10th spot in the Premier League and Clarke believes they are one of several teams who have not been as tight defensively this season.

He said: "I think they are a good team, they've got good players and an excellent manager.

"No team has got a god-given right to win matches. Arsenal have had a tricky run of late. I watched quite a lot of their recent performances because I need to know what they are about.

"Their performances have been okay but they haven't had the results.

"Arsenal are like a number of other clubs this year in that there have been a number of goals shipped in the Premier League.

"Defending now is not such a strong art as it used to be.

"Teams have changed, are a little bit more attack-minded, teams are playing for the wins and the games are a little bit more open.

"But most teams in the league now, they ship a few more goals than they would have done before."

PA

News
Patrick Stewart in the classiest ice bucket to date
peopleSir Patrick took a more understated approach to the challenge
News
The current recommendation from Britain's Chief Medical Officer, is that people refrain from drinking on at least two days a week
scienceTheory is that hangovers are caused by methanol poisoning
Arts and Entertainment
tvWe have created an infogaphic that looks back over the previous incarnations of the Doctor
Sport
Olivier Giroud celebrates after his late goal saved Arsenal a point at Goodison Park
football Giroud rescues a point for Arsenal after they trailed by two goals
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
i100
News
newsComedian Lee Hurst started trend with first tweet using the hashtag
News
i100
News
Australian rapper Iggy Azalea was left red faced but, thankfully, unhurt after taking a few too many steps backwards, sending her tumbling off the stage.
people
Life and Style
A nearly completed RoboThespian robot inside the Engineered Arts workshop is tested in Penryn, England. The Cornish company, operating from an industrial unit near Falmouth, is the world's only maker of commercially available life sized humanoid robots
techSuper-intelligent robots could decide destroying the human race is the kindest thing to do
Life and Style
techConcept would see planes coated in layer of micro-sensors and able to sense wear and tear
News
scienceExcitement from alien hunters at 'evidence' of extraterrestrial life
News
newsRyan Crighton goes in search of the capo dei capi
Life and Style
Customers can get their caffeine fix on the move
food + drink
News
i100
Extras
indybest

Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

All this talk of an ‘apocalyptic’ threat is simply childish

Robert Fisk: All this talk of an ‘apocalyptic’ threat is simply childish

Chuck Hagel and Martin Dempsey were pure Hollywood. They only needed Tom Cruise
Mafia Dons: is the Camorra in control of the Granite City?

Mafia Dons: is the Camorra in control of the Granite City?

So claims an EU report which points to the Italian Mob’s alleged grip on everything from public works to property
Emmys look set to overhaul the Oscars as Hollywood’s prize draw

Emmys look set to overhaul the Oscars as Hollywood’s prize draw

Once the poor relation, the awards show now has the top stars and boasts the best drama
What happens to African migrants once they land in Italy during the summer?

What happens to migrants once they land in Italy?

Memphis Barker follows their trail through southern Europe
French connection: After 1,300 years, there’s a bridge to Mont Saint-Michel

French connection: After 1,300 years, there’s a bridge to Mont Saint-Michel

The ugly causeway is being dismantled, an elegant connection erected in its place. So everyone’s happy, right?
Frank Mugisha: Uganda's most outspoken gay rights activist on changing people's attitudes, coming out, and the threat of being attacked

Frank Mugisha: 'Coming out was a gradual process '

Uganda's most outspoken gay rights activist on changing people's attitudes, coming out, and the threat of being attacked
Radio 1 to hire 'YouTube-famous' vloggers to broadcast online

Radio 1’s new top ten

The ‘vloggers’ signed up to find twentysomething audience
David Abraham: Big ideas for the small screen

David Abraham: Big ideas for the small screen

A blistering attack on US influence on British television has lifted the savvy head of Channel 4 out of the shadows
Florence Knight's perfect picnic: Make the most of summer's last Bank Holiday weekend

Florence Knight's perfect picnic

Polpetto's head chef shares her favourite recipes from Iced Earl Grey tea to baked peaches, mascarpone & brown sugar meringues...
Horst P Horst: The fashion photography genius who inspired Madonna comes to the V&A

Horst P Horst comes to the V&A

The London's museum has delved into its archives to stage a far-reaching retrospective celebrating the photographer's six decades of creativity
Mark Hix recipes: Try our chef's summery soups for a real seasonal refresher

Mark Hix's summery soups

Soup isn’t just about comforting broths and steaming hot bowls...
Tim Sherwood column: 'It started as a three-horse race but turned into the Grand National'

Tim Sherwood column

I would have taken the Crystal Palace job if I’d been offered it soon after my interview... but the whole process dragged on so I had to pull out
Eden Hazard: Young, gifted... not yet perfect

Eden Hazard: Young, gifted... not yet perfect

Eden Hazard admits he is still below the level of Ronaldo and Messi but, after a breakthrough season, is ready to thrill Chelsea’s fans
Tim Howard: I’m an old dog. I don’t get too excited

Tim Howard: I’m an old dog. I don’t get too excited

The Everton and US goalkeeper was such a star at the World Cup that the President phoned to congratulate him... not that he knows what the fuss is all about
Match of the Day at 50: Show reminds us that even the most revered BBC institution may have a finite lifespan – thanks to the opposition

Tom Peck on Match of the Day at 50

The show reminds us that even the most revered BBC institution may have a finite lifespan – thanks to the opposition