Baggies streak no fluke, states coach

Baggies streak no fluke, states coach

LONDON - Reuters
Baggies streak no fluke, states coach

West Bromwich Albion attacker Zoltan Gera (2L) celebrates with teammates after scoring against Sunderland during a Premier League match. AFP photo

Before Nov. 25, the last time West Bromwich Albion had won four top flight matches on the bounce, Bryan Robson was marshaling its midfield and Cyrille Regis was banging the goals in up front.

Margaret Thatcher was the British prime minister, best-selling arcade game Pac-Man was released, and 65 nations, led by the United States, boycotted the Moscow Olympics.

That the 2012 vintage matched the exploits of that 1980 side at the weekend with a 4-2 win at Sunderland may surprise casual observers, but not those who have been studying Steve Clarke’s team.
Perhaps drawing inspiration from the Latin motto on the town of West Bromwich’s coat of arms which translates as ‘work conquers all,’ the Baggies have hustled and harried a number of teams out of their way, their number already including Liverpool, Everton and Chelsea.

The Sunderland win bumped the team into third place in the Premier League table with 26 points, above the likes of Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham.

The unfashionable club may make for incongruous high fliers, but their lofty position is well earned, coach Clarke says.

“It’s certainly not been a lucky start,” Clarke told the club’s website. “We’ve earned every point we’ve got. You could even say we’ve been unlucky not to get more points in some games.

“It’s been a solid start and we’ve deserved everything we’ve got. We’re third and we deserve to be there.”