Robson: Stick with me, I'll bring us back

April 29, 2006

Bryan Robson insists he is the right man to lead West Bromwich Albion back into the Premiership following their relegation to the Championship.

Portsmouth's victory at Wigan sealed Albion's fate before their final home game of the season against West Ham on Monday.

A dismal run of just three points from the last 11 games meant there was to be no `Great Escape' this season and has left Robson's future open to speculation.

But Robson, who twice won promotion to the Premiership while in charge of Middlesbrough, feels that he is still the right man for the job at The Hawthorns.

The former England skipper said: 'I can face being the manager of a Championship side if the club are happy to stay with me.

'I have been in the Championship twice before and thankfully my team got promoted on each occasion and they say that things happen in threes.

'If everyone at the club is happy with me then I am up for the challenge of trying to get straight back into the Premiership.'

Robson has admitted that Albion have already got a plan in place to prepare for life in the Championship and he added: 'The club has always had a Plan A and a Plan B.

'That is the way that things are structured and as a manager you just have to get on with things.

'In the Championship there are certain types of players you would want to bring in.

'But I know that I will have a good squad and a higher wage bill than most of the teams in the Championship so the expectation will be to go straight back.'

As to what went wrong this season, Robson feels that he needed to bring in more new players in the January transfer window to have given Albion more hope of avoiding the drop.

He said: 'The main thing I am saying is that West Ham spent £25m since last summer while Portsmouth were fortunate to go into the transfer market and spend £11.5m in the January transfer window.

'Everyone knows that in January we sold £5m worth of players and signed Nigel Quashie for £1.25m. That tells its own story.'

While Albion already know their fate, Robson has demanded a vastly improved display against West Ham than the team produced at Newcastle United last weekend when they crashed to a 3-0 defeat.

Robson said: 'We have to go out and be professional and entertain our fans who have paid good money to watch us play.

'You are always going to get pressure from some fans when things are not going right.

'But they have been great over the last couple of months. They have remained behind the team because the players had been performing well and not got their rewards.

'The fans could put up with that. But when you give a first-half performance like we did at Newcastle then they have every right to be angry and we have to make sure we come up with a better display against West Ham.'

Albion are boosted by the return of midfielder Ronnie Wallwork after a two-match ban but central defender Neil Clement could miss out as he has a knee problem that requires surgery this summer.