So with Mark from Albion Til We Die, popping over to ask me 20 questions ahead of today’s game I spied a chance to ask some back and maybe get a regular feature going to boot. So here are his answers to the six questions that I know you’re all dying to ask of Albion fans.
Wigan Athletic – what do you really think about us?
Even though I admit I probably predict for you to be relegated almost every season, I think what Wigan have achieved and are still achieving is fantastic. I don’t buy into the notion, pushed mainly by Sky and the national media, that the Premier League is all about the so called ‘big boys’. I’d much rather see the likes of yourselves, and ourselves, the ‘unfashionable clubs’ doing well.
Focusing solely on Wigan, I think you have a super chairman and a great manager. They are without a doubt for me the main factors behind your continued run in the top division.
Nathan Ellington – where did it all go wrong?
I don’t think the player really helped himself during his spell at The Hawthorns in all honesty. His performances were more often than not simply lazy, and he often gave the impression that he didn’t want to be here. His decision towards the end of the 2005/06 season to refuse to play due to a ‘bruised toe’ meant he lost all sympathy and any backing he had from Baggies’ fans, a situation made worse the following year when he handed in a transfer request. He’s certainly not remembered fondly at The Hawthorns.
Paul Scharner, superhero or fool?
Scharner is certainly a strange one. In two seasons at The Hawthorns you can count on the fingers of one hand the number of really good games he had but for some reason we seemed to play better when he was in the team. He was certainly a leader and the type of ‘character’ we were lacking at the time and we probably did get our monies’ worth out of him. Off the pitch he was a different class. In my 30 years of supporting the club he probably connected more with fans than any other player, whether it was by holding question and answer sessions or by meeting fans, the guy went out of his way to look after fans.
What can the Premier League learn from West Brom?
I think the biggest thing clubs should take note of us doing, and I think that some are now, is not to spend beyond their means and have patience. Each time we went down, we only sold players on our terms, we weren’t desperate for money, and we always had money to spend on building another promotion winning team. Compare that to the likes of Leeds, Birmingham City and Portsmouth. Unless you’re backed by an Arab billionaire it really is the only way to do it.
How will tomorrow’s game pan out?
I expect a fairly even game with both teams confident going into it on the back of a win. Our away form isn’t great though so we may struggle to win, I’ll go for a 2-2 draw.
Thanks to Mark for his time, and may the best team win, unless it’s not Latics, in that case I’ll take a crabby 1-0.
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