Home Premier League Arsenal Was Clarke’s sacking justified ?

Was Clarke’s sacking justified ?

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Steve Clarke was sacked last night, despite turning West Bromwich Albion’s fortunes around in the space of just one season in charge at the club.

Clarke took the reigns in the summer of 2012 following Roy Hodgson’s departure to manage the England national team as a confident Clarke picked up were Hodgson, and even Di Matteo previously had left up on, by carrying the good work on at the Albion.

The Scottish manager oversaw a superb season for the Baggies, guiding the club to an emphatic eigth place finish in the 2012/13 campaign, leading the side to their highest ever finish in a top flight season.

Clarke brought in Romelu Lukaku, who spearheaded Albion’s attack for the campaign, as the overachieving Baggies won many plaudits with their attacking style of play that Clarke had brought in, after learning the game as an assistant manager under Jose Mourinho at Chelsea, and under Roy Hodgson at Liverpool.

Albion had a superb start to the campaign, thanks mainly to the fire power of Lukaku, accompanied with the versatile Mulumbu and the Swedish centre back Jons Olsson, as the Baggies sat third in early December.

Albion then hit a slump in the calender year of 2013…..

Albion have won just seven of their 34 league games in 2013 with the club’s board having decided that Clarke needs to be replaced, which is most certainly relegation form.

Many will see the Clarke sacking as a harsh one, considering what he had done for the Baggies, overseeing a win away art Manchester United, and decent results against Arsenal and Chelsea.

Albion sporting director Dan Ashworth stated…..

Things aren’t happening for us at the moment,” Clarke had said shortly after the loss in Cardiff. “There’s no magic formula, all we can do is try to break this run as soon as possible – against Hull [West Brom’s next opponents].”

A statement on the club website on Saturday night said the club had “this evening relieved Head Coach Steve Clarke of his duties and placed him on gardening leave with immediate effect.

“This was the unanimous decision of the Football Club’s Board of Directors following a disappointing performance throughout 2013.

“Albion have won only seven of their 34 Barclays Premier League games during the calendar year – a 20 per cent win percentage yielding a total of only 31 points – despite a substantial investment in the first-team squad.”

Clarke had brought in players such as Manchester City’s Scott Sinclair, and Everton’s Victor Anichebe to add to an already strong squad, Clarke also brought through Saido Berahino into the first team set up, as he had stamped his authority upon the squad, Matej Vydra, who had been on loan at Watford as drafted in, aswell as French veteran Nicholas Anelka.

However, after a difficult start to the campaign, Clarke’s position at West Brom has been vulnerable for some time with the Scot in the final year of his contract and having expressed a desire to agree a new deal as soon as possible.

But Clarke was sacked with the Baggies languishing in 16th position in the Premier League, after yeaterday’s defeat to Cardiff City,after a real fall from grace.

Albion will now be searching for a new manager.

By Ben Reardon

@BenReardon1

 

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