Baggies bring in new year with Hammers test (3pm ko)
JAMES Morrison insists he and his Albion team-mates will be fully focused on registering a positive result at West Ham tomorrow and will not be distracted by the events of this week.
The Baggies kick off 2015 with a New Year’s Day trip to Upton Park to face the Hammers (3pm ko).
Rob Kelly will take charge with the assistance of Keith Downing and Dean Kiely after Albion on Monday parted company with head coach Alan Irvine.
It came after a run of three successive Barclays Premier League defeats and seven losses in nine.
Morrison said: “It’s never easy to see a head coach go. Every week you give your all for the head coach and the bond with the players was strong.
“You could probably see in the performances that we were all trying our hardest, the club have made a decision and it’s time to move on.
“We’ve had a meeting and you’ve got to quickly put it to bed because we’ve got a game coming up and that’s the main focus.
“We’re in a bit of trouble at the wrong end of the table so we need to put everything into that and get out of it.
“If you look at our squad, we’ve got some good players so we should be doing a bit better.”
The Baggies face a West Ham side who are sixth in the Premier League table, despite having lost their last two games.
The London outfit came out on top 2-1 when the two sides met at The Hawthorns in early December, a game which saw Albion take the lead courtesy of Craig Dawson’s early header.
Albion expect to be able to name Irvine’s successor by the weekend.
And Morrison acknowledges the fact that the new man in charge potentially keeping one eye on events will ensure everyone is looking to impress at Upton Park, where assistant coaches Kelly and Downing as well as goalkeeping coach Kiely will be in the dugout.
“Rob’s a good guy. Keith and Deano are also there who have been here for a number of years and have a good bond with the players,” Morrison said.
“So everyone is pulling in the right direction and in the right frame of mind.
“It’s a fresh start and whoever comes in might have their eyes on the game so we’ve got to be putting in 100% and getting a win for the fans, who deserve more.”
Morrison, 28, added: “You’ve got to impress the new head coach to get in the team.
“We’ve got a big squad here, a lot of new players came in at the start of the season who are champing at the bit to play.
“So you’ve got to be on top of your game to get in the side.”