West Brom news

Baggies will curb attacking instincts

March 3, 2011
By ESPNsoccernet staff

West Brom winger Jerome Thomas claims that the Baggies are happy to curb their attacking instincts if it means that they stay in the Premier League this season.

Jerome Thomas
GettyImagesJerome Thomas' attacking instincts will suffer under Hodgson.

Roberto di Matteo was sacked and replaced by Roy Hodgson last month and, since the former Liverpool boss took over, the club have drawn three games in a row to keep just out of the drop zone.

Thomas has paid tribute to Hodgson and the way in which he has altered the club's tactics to keep them up.

"If I had to say one thing he's changed it is more stability in the team," he said. "He wants two banks of four and as an attacking winger I have to sacrifice some of that - and so does Brunty, Dozza (Graham Dorrans) and Mozza (James Morrison) - to keep the shape of the team.

"So it just means more tucking in, more tackling, more defending and heading. It's all for the team and if that's what we need to do to stay in the Premier League, I'm all for it."

West Brom went down after trying to attack in 2008-09 and, although they bounced straight back up again, Thomas says relegation back to the Championship after just one season is unthinkable.

"No-one wants to get relegated," the 27-year-old said. "The players on the bench are not happy they're not playing but no-one wants to be back in the Championship. We all know collectively - all the players and staff - it's in our best interests to stay in the Premier League.

"We're all working together. We're not a team that sit back and hope for a chance. We like to create, go forward and play good football and we will take that and take what the manager is bringing in, which is stability, and hopefully the two will make a good combination."