Club News

Mel looking no further than Gunners

And Baggies boss lays down what he thinks is required from last three games

PEPE Mel insists he and his players are fully focussed on tomorrow’s tough trip to Arsenal (ko 1.30pm).

The Baggies boss was quizzed at length by the media on his contract situation at his pre-match press conference.

But he is looking no further ahead than preparing for the Emirates Stadium encounter as he goes in search of the one point he feels Albion need to ensure Barclays Premier League safety for another season.

He was also keen to offer his condolences to the family of former Albion winger Clive ‘Chippy’ Clark, who died this week, aged 73.

“Firstly I’d like to express my thoughts to the family of Clive Clark – a really magnificent player,” said Mel.

"My thoughts go out to his family.”

The Baggies are four points above the relegation zone and their fate cannot be decided by the time they kick-off against the Gunners.

But results in Albion’s favour in the Stoke-Fulham game today and Chelsea-Norwich match tomorrow will give them a huge helping hand towards safety.

Mel added: “We are focussed only on the next three matches.

“We need an extra point and the most important thing now is the three matches.

“It’s ridiculous for me to think about the future now if we then lose, lose and lose.

“Today I will talk with my players and speak only about Arsenal.

“If I only speak about the future it is a big mistake.

“The Stoke-Fulham game is a big game for us.

“Then the Arsenal game is a very difficult game.

“Arsenal are in the top four and are a big club.

“But I hope and believe it is possible for us to get something.”

The Albion chief will be hoping his men can again rise to the big occasion after taking points against Liverpool, Chelsea, Arsenal, Everton, Tottenham and Manchester United already this term.

And he will take confidence in the Baggies drawing in four of their five visits to the capital this campaign.

“Arsenal have some really fantastic players and it really isn’t going to be an easy match for us,” he said.

“I have a lot of confidence and I’m convinced West Brom are going to have a good game.

“The Emirates Stadium is a good place to play football but Arsenal is a big team, with a good coach and good players.

“It will be difficult to keep a clean sheet against them.

“We need to score goals and have a good, good performance in attack and defence.

“We will need to attack and defend together."