IT'S that time of the week when you put your work to one side, make a brew, grab a biscuit and read the latest edition of BAGGIE SHORTS.
Our sideways-look behind the scenes at all things Albion is bursting to the seams once again, there's no time to waste!
WANT to know a typical Albion fan?
Lifelong Baggies supporter Dave Haslam, DJ of the legendary Manchester club Hacidenda, pointed us in the direction of a YouGov survey which, one would hope, should reflect a cross section of Albion supporters.
We tip our hats who those involved in the study, but it churned out some strange results.
For instance, Baggies fans are most likely to be males in their 60s, with leanings towards the right of the political spectrum.
Furthermore, a typical Albion supporter's interests include pottery and gardening, with The Times being the most sought-after newspaper.
The Baggies faithful, we are told, are 'grumpy', 'diffident' and 'accident-prone'. We don't believe that for one minute.
TV interests include the Two Ronnies and Great Continental Train Journeys - we kid you not.
Des Lynam is among an Albion supporter's favourite TV personalities.
We can't possibly pass comment but someone, somewhere is clearly lost and needs sending back to 1983.
Jack Rose was named as Accrington’s man of the match on Saturday – not that our goalkeeping coach Mark Naylor would know.
Rose, on a month-long loan deal from Albion, was impressive between the sticks for Stanley in their 1-0 defeat to Carlisle.
Naylor travelled to deepest Cumbria to watch our youngster in action.
Check out his view…
Next up for Albion is a trip to Stamford Bridge.
West London always brings out the great and the good of British media, not least when Jose Mourinho’s name is above the manager’s door (though it could also have something to do with the Bridge having the best pre-match spread)
BAGGIE SHORTS recalls his first stint in charge, notably Chelsea’s 4-0 midweek victory over Bryan Robson’s Albion.
After the game, some of football’s most-esteemed writers did the equivalent of leaving their towels over the front row of seats, dumping their notebooks as they sought more refreshments.
Robson completed his media duties, before we eagerly awaited the arrival of the self-proclaimed Special One.
The door swung open and in came assistant boss Steve Clarke, long before his profile or gravitas was anywhere near to what it is now.
Immediately, two very well-known football writers stood up and walked out.
“…I have no interest in what he has to say…” sniffed one moody hack as he stormed off, moaning about the missed opportunity to chew the fat with Chelsea’s quote-happy boss.
Speaking of long-standing media rituals, Chelsea’s press room was one of few stadia where the Fourth Estate could partake in a spot of liquid refreshment. If we tell you the choice of drop was white, red or Rosé then you should get the picture.
That practice was brought to an abrupt end when one journalist, in quicker time than it takes to say ‘a glass of your finest Shiraz please barman’, threw down his notepad and pen and picked up his fan's rattle, taking Rafa Benitez to task over his team selection.
Clearly not a fan of the Spaniard, the plum-faced journalist was soon asked to calm himself.
Time was called on this particular privilege – at the following match journalists had a choice of Pepsi or Diet Coke.
We visit the King’s Road on Saturday and so thoughts naturally turn to the King himself. No, not Michael Jackson, Jeff Astle.
In certain, more heathen parts of our capital city, they would contest that the King was actually the late, great Peter Osgood. Palpable nonsense of course.
Even so, when England jetted off to Mexico to defend the World Cup in 1970, one hotel room must have been a veritable palace given it played host to two kings – Astle and Osgood – and the Prince of Upton Park, Geoff Hurst.
Astle, as we know, was fond of the odd tune or two and quickly installed himself at the wheels of steel, courtesy of a tiny Dansette record player he’d taken on tour with him. Osgood took up the story.
“Astle was a funny, funny man but he had this one record with him, ‘Spirit In The Sky’ and he kept playing it over and over again. I wouldn’t have minded, but we’d knocked that off the top of the charts with ‘Back Home’!”
“We asked him to leave it, but he wouldn’t. So in the finish, me and Hursty had to snap the record in half.”
And finally…well done to Albion’s Under-12s who finished third in the Christmas Truce National Tournament in Ypres over the weekend. Another fantastic effort against the rest of the Premier League.
On a sombre note, the tournament was staged a week after we unveiled our plaque to the club’s First World War hero Harold Bache, who of course lost his life on the battlefields of Ypres in a very different world at a very different time.
We’re sure the great man would have looked down with pride at the youngsters wearing the colours of his old club.