Club News

Clarke: Long's double deserved better

And boss provides update on Berahino contract situation

STEVE Clarke admitted Shane Long’s deadly derby double in last night’s 2-2 draw with Villa deserved more.

The Hawthorns boss was once again full of praise for the Republic of Ireland international after he made it four goals in as many games for club and country.

His sensational eight-minute brace put the Baggies firmly in control at 2-0 – but defensive errors cancelled out the striker's good work.

“Shane’s performance at Chelsea everyone spoke about – he did really well,” said Clarke.

“He got another goal when he was away with the Republic and he showed tonight when he’s on his top level he is a force to be reckoned with.

“I thought his first finish especially was good.

"You just think of that skill of bringing the ball down over your shoulder - which is really difficult - and shifting it onto his weaker left foot, which by the way he hit it you wouldn’t know was his weaker foot.

“The second finish showed good anticipation to read the poor pass across the back and a good finish.

“A good night for Shane, unfortunately we couldn’t get the three points.

“I’ve said all along Shane would have a big part to play for us this season and he’s proving that on the pitch – and that’s all he can do.

“I’m sure the club will sit down sometime in the future and sort his contract out.

“It’s not my department, as I’ve said many times.”

But Clarke was able to provide an update on Saido Berahino’s contact situation.

“I thought the contract was almost done,” he added.

“As far as I know, the club have made him a really, really good offer and we’re just waiting on his agent to sort him out.

“I don’t think there is too much more negotiation to be done.

“He just has to put pen to paper on the deal – it’s a good deal.”