We’re delighted to welcome former West Brom striker Kevin Phillips as our exclusive columnist. Each week he’ll be giving his views on the biggest talking points at The Hawthorns…
Kevin Phillips believes that Jack Clarke could be a good signing for West Brom after the Tottenham forward was linked with a loan move to The Hawthorns.
According to the London Evening Standard, Albion have joined Fulham and Brentford in the race to sign the 19-year-old attacker, who spent last season on loan at both Leeds and QPR in the Championship.
Spurs signed Clarke from Leeds for £10million last summer before instantly sending him back on loan to Elland Road.
However, the England Under-20 international failed to start a single Championship match in his loan spells at both Leeds and QPR.
Phillips has pointed out that there is still hope for Clarke at West Brom if they do sign the York-born youngster on loan this summer because Slaven Bilic has a proven record of improving players.
However, he still believes signing Clarke could be a risk.
“When West Brom signed Diangana and Pereira, I don’t think many people had heard of them but they flourished under Slaven Bilic,” Phillips told West Brom News.
“History certainly suggests that players perform under Slaven – he gets the best out of them.
“It’s been a frustrating period for Clarke but he’s a good, quality player who’s got potential.
“It might be one of those where you take a slight gamble on it and it pays off as it did with Diangana and Pereira.
“That could turn out to be a good piece of business if they get a good deal.”
Phillips is right that not many people will have heard about Diangana or Pereira before Bilic signed them last summer but Diangana already had 17 Premier League appearances under his belt at West Ham while Pereira had 19 Bundesliga appearances and 42 Liga NOS appearances on his CV.
Clarke is younger than both of them and has just 31 Championship appearances to his name.
Diangana and Pereira had already played plenty of top-flight football whereas Clarke hasn’t and that is where the issue lies.
Clarke does not seem to be anywhere near as good as Diangana, who he is likely to replace in the Baggies squad if a loan deal is struck with Tottenham.
In other West Brom news, Albion have seen a loan bid for this £9million-rated player rejected.