Keith Downing believes West Brom boss Steve Clarke has provided a seamless transition from the Roy Hodgson era as the Baggies prepare to tackle Capital One Cup holders Liverpool.
Assistant head coach Downing believes Clarke has combined the defensive solidity of current England boss Hodgson with a more attacking approach. Albion are fourth in the Premier League and will be looking to complete a quick-fire double over Liverpool after their 3-0 opening-day win at the Hawthorns. Downing told Sky Sports:
“The manager (Clarke) takes a lot of credit because he stepped into some big shoes in terms of Roy’s work previously. Steve is a very quiet man, he doesn’t take the plaudits too much and he does his work in the background. But the transition has been seamless. He has come in and put his own slant on it. He has worked off Roy’s principles but put his own mark to it.”
When asked to compare the qualities of the duo, Downing said: “They are very similar, very organised, structured, know exactly what we are doing on the pitch. In general terms, Steve has added a bit in terms of ideas going forward on the offensive side. But there are a lot of principles in terms of what Roy has done in terms of structure and team ethic and he has carried that on. The sensible thing is Steve has realised what is good and added the things he feels need improving and has done that really well.”