What would you rather do? Play well and draw? As a former defender I always go back to giving no goals away, and as long as we do that we’ll always get something out of it or hopefully win the games.
The 1-0 wins over struggling teams like Wigan and Huddersfield at The Hawthorns might not live very long in the memory but the main thing is at this stage of the season we got the result over the line.
The only thing think lately is – once we’ve gone 1-0 up in games we’ve come off it a little bit.
Whereas before, or certainly in our day, when we went one up we’d want to get a second just to be safe. Albion seem happy with the 1-0 at the moment. But because we’ve kept on winning tight games 1-0 and it has worked, the players have continued to do it. If we could just push up five or 10 yards to close their space and time that would be great.
We went through a patch in our excellent form under Corberan where in the final third we were putting in cross after cross after cross, so many balls in or around the box. All of a sudden that has started to slow down a touch. I want to see it in the box a bit more.
Having said that, we’ve not had both of the centre-forwards fit for a prolonged period, have we?
Dike has shown me he will always score if he gets quality balls into the box. He’s good in the air, which is great for him as a striker at just 22. He’s got something about him, anything in the air or in the box and we’ve got a chance.
We’ve got to hope he can stay like that after international duty, it’s a shame the two of them haven’t been fit to play together, especially at home, but we’ve never done that. Corberan has said it doesn’t fit into how he wants to line us up.
Back when I was playing, the factors would always be your manager, who you were coming up against and how you had been playing.
We were fortunate, with a great team. Under Johnny Giles, it was more defensive but with Ron Atkinson it was more about going forward. Big Ron wanted to attack all the time. With Gilesy, we’d attack but be more cautious. Under Big Ron there would just be two of us left at the back!
When we got promoted with Gilesy, once we started to win after a terrible start we went on a great run because we gave nothing away.
It happened too with Albion this season, back a few months ago when we started winning games, we were just not conceding – and haven’t been at home! It is so important, especially at this decisive time of the season.
The thing I can’t get on board with are those silly little balls across the back! But that is the game now and how it has changed.
I always think ‘get the ball in their half, that’s where we want it!’
It is a good week or so yet until we have another game due to this international break and to be honest as a player I would rather play games than train.
I’d much rather two games a week, and play midweek, they have to sit through a long break. I hated that. But every player is different, some will not like it and some will think a break is great. We’ve got to keep sharp, focus on what we were doing previously under the manager and we’ll be alright.