Steve Clarke named West Brom head coach after Liverpool exit

 

West Brom have appointed Steve Clarke as their head coach on a two-year deal.

The 48-year-old left his role at Liverpool on Wednesday, where he was assistant manager before Kenny Dalglish's dismissal in May.

It is Clarke's first job as head coach after spells on the backroom staff at Newcastle, Chelsea and Liverpool.

"Becoming a head coach in my own right has always been an ambition of mine and I feel I have served my apprenticeship," Clarke said.

"I've done everything I could as an assistant. I'm absolutely delighted to be given this opportunity.

"I'm delighted West Brom have given me the chance to make that progression and I'm determined to make the most of it."

Clarke's appointment ends West Brom's month-long search for a new boss after Roy Hodgson joined England.

The former Chelsea assistant had emerged as a leading contender for the West Brom job after his departure from Anfield was confirmed by the League Managers' Association (LMA).

Newly appointed Norwich boss Chris Hughton, former Chelsea manager Claudio Ranieri, Ray Wilkins and former Schalke boss Ralf Rangnick had also been linked with the role.

West Brom sporting and technical director Dan Ashworth revealed that Clarke's coaching ability was key to his being chosen.

He said: "We firmly believe we have appointed the right man to keep the club moving forward.

Clarke's coaching career

  • Newcastle United: 1998-1999
  • Chelsea: 2004-2008
  • West Ham: 2008-2010
  • Liverpool: 2011-2012

"After Roy was appointed as England manager we cast the net far and wide to identify the most suitable candidate to fill his shoes.

"From the outset we decided to pursue candidates who are renowned for their coaching ability and Steve was very much at the forefront of our thoughts because of the clubs he has worked at and the high regard he is held in within the game.

"Steve has a real hunger and drive to succeed as a number one and is excited about the ongoing project we have at the club."

Clarke parted company with Liverpool on "amicable terms", the LMA said on Wednesday.

Last week Liverpool appointed Swansea boss Brendan Rodgers as manager.

Clarke, who was number two to Dalglish, offered his resignation when Dalglish was sacked, but the club rejected it.

He was Dalglish's first major appointment in January 2011, arriving at Anfield after coaching spells at Newcastle, Chelsea and West Ham.

The LMA said Clarke, who played over 400 games for Chelsea during an 11-year career with the Londoners, was now "looking forward to the next challenge in his career".

It was Hodgson's departure from Liverpool that led to Clarke moving to Anfield alongside Dalglish.

Hodgson steered West Brom to 10th place in the Premier League last season.

Among Clarke's first tasks will be to try to make goalkeeper Ben Foster's loan move from Birmingham a permanent one, although he is also a target for QPR.

Central defender Jonas Olsson, part of Sweden's Euro 2012 squad, is also entering the last year of his current deal.

Former Scotland international Clarke worked under Ruud Gullit and Jose Mourinho at Chelsea and Gianfranco Zola at West Ham.