Carlos Corberán | Pressure can only increase our desire & motivation

Carlos Corberán watching training

Carlos Corberán firmly believes the pressure on his side against Preston North End this weekend will only increase the players’ “desire and motivation” to get the job done. 

The Baggies welcome the mid-table Lilywhites to The Hawthorns on Saturday lunchtime for the final league game of the Sky Bet Championship campaign (ko 12.30pm), knowing three points will secure a spot in the play-offs. 

Albion head into the encounter sat sixth in the standings, two points clear of Hull City in seventh and one point behind Norwich City in fifth. 

The boss insists the players are determined to deliver a positive reaction to their defeat at Sheffield Wednesday and has stressed the importance of staying focused on the aspects they can control. 

Carlos Corberán holding a football during a training session

Carlos said: “I’m looking forward. That’s the phrase that I have when describing my emotions before this game. 

“It’s a feeling we all have because compared to last year when we had a chance to make the play-offs but it wasn’t in our own hands, this year, we know that it’s in our hands and that we’re playing at home.

“That doesn’t mean it’s easier or more difficult, it’s just the situation we are in right now and it’s the consequence of the work the team has done in the previous 45 games. 

“All the players and all the staff who are working with the team are excited to prepare for this game and are looking forward to experiencing the atmosphere we know the fans will create.

Carlos Corberán blowing his whistle during a training session

“We’ve had a difficult run of results recently but I definitely sense a determination in the squad to stop that run.

“We always want to achieve a positive result and it’s true that our recent results haven’t gone well, so it only increases our level of desire to make things work.

“In this situation we find ourselves in, we only need to be fully focused on the behaviours on the football pitch.

“I haven’t seen any nerves in anyone. I have seen upset feelings after the last game because in some of the minutes of that game we didn’t compete at the level we know we can compete and, consequently, we lost that game.

“When these things happen, the team never accepts this. It’s important to show a reaction and we have to show it. We cannot accept not competing in the right level. 

Carlos Corberán delivering a message to his players during a training session

“Against Leicester, we lost the game, but the team was competing closer to best level we can achieve. When this happens, you can accept the defeat in a better way.

“The worst feeling that you can have in football is not the defeat, it’s when you have a defeat after not giving your best on the pitch.

“We can never control how our opponents face the games. It’s true that Preston are not in the position that we are, but for me, the key is to use the position we have as a positive.

“For me, this type of pressure where you have to get a positive result to achieve a play-off position, it can only increase your desire and your motivation. This pressure can never decrease our level of performance, it can only increase it in my eyes.

“In football, you need the concentration to perform well and the desire to compete well. If you have both of these things, we are going to have big possibilities to achieve what we want to achieve.”

Carlos Corberán watches an Albion game while wearing a black coat

Saturday's showdown is completely sold out, with keen Baggies fans snapping up every available ticket in an effort to help push their side over the line. 

Corberán is adamant Albion supporters have the ability to “change everything in the game” when they’re at their best, and has called on them to produce an electrifying atmosphere at The Hawthorns.

“I know how important our supporters can be. I have come up against this club before, and now I am manager of this club.

“I know the contribution they have. For example, it’s impossible to forget the atmosphere they created for the game against Wolves in the FA Cup. It’s impossible to not give your best as a player in that atmosphere.

Albion fans celebrate a goal at The Hawthorns

“I know our fans can do that again and it’s very important for us. 

“In football and in life, we always need to be ready to face the situation. The situation is that everything has arrived to give us the chance to have what we want to achieve in our hands. 

“Our fans want to achieve this as well.

“We don’t know what will happen in the game and we don’t know how much difficulty we will face. What we do know is that we are going to give one hundred per cent commitment and effort from the first second to the last. 

“I know our fans will be fully committed with us if they see we are fully committed to the game, which we will be.

“I can promise you that when they support us in the level that they can, they can change everything in the game.”

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