Odemwingie credits Clarke factor

06 November 2012 04:18

Two-goal hero Peter Odemwingie hailed the impact of new West Brom manager Steve Clarke and believes their current top-five spot in the Barclays Premier League is no fluke.

Albion climbed four places after Odemwingie's brace earned a 2-0 win over bottom placed Southampton at the Hawthorns on Monday night, enabling them to bounce back from the heartbreak of successive injury-time defeats to champions Manchester City and Newcastle.

Odemwingie said: "We are improving as players individually which is very important. I can see that. It is so obvious many players have improved and the manager deserves a lot of credit for that."

He added: "His goal this season was to increase the number of passes we make and that makes you enjoy the game more and brings more excitement. We create so many chances and those things are also very encouraging.

"We were saying in the dressing room after the Southampton game that even one point from the previous two games, when we lost so late on, would have put us fourth.

"The expectations from our fans are high and after losing against the champions (Manchester City), being so disappointed as a team for us means we are getting better and the ambition is there.

"It is a big plus for us so it's a challenge and the better the results we get, the more confidence grows. We are showing a very good quality of football as well so that is where the expectations are coming from because we've been getting results against very good sides."

Odemwingie, Albion's top scorer for the past two campaigns, knows West Brom face a tough task to maintain their current lofty status but feels it is not an insurmountable challenge.

He said: "We need to consider also there is a bit of instability (up and down results) amongst the other teams under the top four so that is the hope.

"The weekend results helped us to bridge the gap that was there (in the table) and if we keep playing like this, and the rest of the teams outside the top four are still unstable. you never know. We will be surprised to finish in the top six or seven but I don't think we will say it is a mistake if we keep playing like we have for the past two months."

Source: PA