herald

Saturday 16 December 2017

Pardew: 'Baggies have resources to survive'

West Brom boss Alan Pardew
West Brom boss Alan Pardew

New boss Alan Pardew believes West Brom have enough options in reserve to secure Premier League survival.

The 56-year-old was forced to settle for a point from his first game in charge on Saturday, a goalless draw with his former side Crystal Palace. 

It kept the Baggies 17th and they sit three points above the relegation zone after extending their winless run to 13 league games. 

But Pardew, who signed a deal running until 2020 on Wednesday, remains confident.

He said: “I was encouraged because I’m still missing five or six players you could argue might be starters, certainly three or four. If that’s the quality of the group I have then we’ll be fine.

“I thought we had some really good performances and the application in the first two days and the game I couldn’t fault. It’s just disappointing we couldn’t send our fans home with a win.

“There are some good professionals here, they were very focused before the game, there’s a lot of experience in there so I’m looking forward to working with them.”

Hal Robson-Kanu and Jay Rodriguez were denied by Julian Speroni after the goalkeeper was a late replacement for Wayne Hennessey, who was injured in the warm-up. 

Confidence

Palace also lost Scott Dann to a virus overnight, meaning they could only name five substitutes - after they spent three and a half hours stuck on a train after it broke down on their way to Birmingham. 

“Basically, anything that could go wrong did go wrong,” said boss Roy Hodgson.

“We got to Euston station in good time and got on the train at 3.23pm, but at 3.30pm it suddenly stopped dead because of problems with the wires overhead.

“We then could not go anywhere, so we spent three and a half hours in the dark and the cold with no toilet facilities until they eventually managed to get a train alongside us to evacuate us.

“Instead of being there at 4.45pm we arrived at 9.30pm. Then the hotel we booked was the venue for an Indian wedding so there was plenty of noise until 2am.”

Palace have now gone 10 straight away games without scoring, a Premier League record, and Hodgson admitted it is affecting morale.

“That’s going to be a confidence factor. We’re constantly aware we need every point that’s there to be had - and people are reminding us all the time we haven’t scored yet,” he said.

“When and if our situation improves, that will help.”

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