Defender calls for more of the same
LIAM Ridgewell has urged Albion to continue their recent knack of starting games strongly and fly out of the blocks when Tottenham visit The Hawthorns this Saturday (3.07pm ko).
Having fallen behind in nine of their prior ten Barclays Premier League matches, the Baggies have taken the lead in their last two fixtures against Cardiff and Norwich.
Pepe Mel’s side failed to capitalise on their early 2-0 advantage against the Bluebirds, going on to draw 3-3, but Morgan Amalfitano’s 16th-minute strike proved enough to secure Saturday’s 1-0 victory at Carrow Road.
Albion have now taken seven points from their last four matches and Ridgewell wants to see another strong start against Spurs as they look to continue that momentum.
“We spoke about it quite a while ago and it was something we wanted to try and nail down,” the left-back said.
“We’ve been starting games very well of late and hopefully we can try and take that into the Spurs game.
“The last two games we’ve started very well so as long as we don’t blow up at the end and do well at the start then it’s all right, we’ve got to try and put it all together.
“In the last four we've won two and drawn one, so it's not a bad return and we've just got to keep pushing on.”
As well as his delight at collecting three massive points against the Canaries, Ridgewell was equally as satisfied with Albion’s first clean sheet since New Year’s Day.
Having taken an early lead, the visitors dug deep in the face of home pressure and showed a strong unity to clinch victory.
And the 29-year-old insists the manner of the triumph, especially coming after conceding last weekend’s demoralising last-gasp leveller against Cardiff, goes to show the true team spirit in the camp.
“Losing a goal so late in the game, it's difficult for everyone to take, you don't get over it until Wednesday,” he said.
“I think everyone dealt with it very well and showed how much character and belief we've got in the squad.
“The team is very strong and very together. Us in the dressing room, we know what we’re about.”
Ridgewell was one of a host of stand-out performers against Norwich.
So much so that Albion’s bumper 2,500 away following started a chant which touted his name for a place in the England squad for this summer’s World Cup.
“I heard bits of it, I’m not sure whether they were taking the mickey or what was going on,” he joked.
“Obviously it was great, I think the fans were singing in loud voice because we were winning, it was brilliant.
“I’ve never been to Brazil, I might go on holiday!”