Clarke out to make most of first chance09/06/2012 - 09:55:28
New West Brom head coach Steve Clarke is intent on repaying the faith of the club in giving him his first shot as a number one.
After 14 years coaching and being assistant to the likes of Jose Mourinho, the late Sir Bobby Robson and Kenny Dalglish, the 48-year-old Scot finds himself in charge for the first time.
And having finally achieved his ambition of being given control of a team after taking over from Roy Hodgson who left to manage England, Clarke is keen to be a success.
“The chairman and Dan Ashworth did a terrific job in selling the club’s project to me and I fully aim to repay the board’s faith,” he said.
“The team and supporters have had some good times in recent years and, with their help, I would like to think those good times can continue following my appointment.
“I know from past visits to The Hawthorns how well the supporters back the team and joining a club of such stature is a real honour. I can’t wait to get started.”
Sporting and technical director Dan Ashworth said the Baggies had no doubts they had selected the right person and the fact Clarke was untested was not a concern.
“We firmly believe we have appointed the right man to keep the club moving forward,” he said.
“After Roy was appointed as England manager we cast the net far and wide to identify the most suitable candidate to fill his shoes.
“From the outset we decided to pursue candidates who are renowned for their coaching ability and Steve was very much at the forefront of our thoughts because of the clubs he has worked at and the high regard he is held in within the game.
“After holding talks with Steve, he emerged as the outstanding candidate.
“Steve has worked alongside and learned from some top managers and, most importantly, he knows the Premier League inside-out and what it takes to succeed at this level.
“He is a talented British coach who has served his time in the trenches as a number two in order to get an opportunity to be in sole charge of a team and we are delighted to give him that chance.”
Clarke plans to use the very best of what he has learned from some of those managerial greats to good effect with the Baggies.
“Becoming a head coach in my own right has always been an ambition of mine and I feel I have served my apprenticeship,” Clarke told wba.co.uk. “I’ve done everything I could as an assistant.
“It’s a process I’ve gone through, with a plan in mind to work as hard as I could alongside some of the best managers and coaches in the world, learning as much as possible from them, before stepping out on my own.
“I’ve taken something from every manager I’ve worked with and I’ve felt ready to make the step up for some time.”
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