Roy seeks defensive improvement

The Baggies have conceded the most goals in the Premier League so

far, 51, and Hodgson was watching in the stands when they let a

three-goal lead slip against West Ham last Saturday. The former

Liverpool boss knows that giving teams a head start, or letting

them back into the game as was the case last week, is not an

option. He said: “The teams that are at the bottom and are fighting

to stay in the league have all got to be aware that if we’re going

to leak or give away goals, or make it easy for the opposition to

score, then we’re making a fairly large rod for our back. “It’s

hard to score goals in this league against any team, and if you’re

giving yourself the handicap of a two or three goal deficit every

game then you’ve got to have some wonderful players to be scoring

the necessary goals to win you the matches.” Hodgson takes charge

of West Brom ahead of their most important game of the season so

far, one which he feels overshadows his own arrival. “Yes, it is a

massive game, but I don’t know how it being my first game impacts

particularly on it,” he said. “It just means that a game that would

have been fairly high profile anyway has maybe got a slightly

higher profile.” Hodgson is well known for his meticulous training

drills and attention to detail, but having spent less than a week

in charge, he doubts how much influence he has been able to have in

terms of footballing style. “Three training sessions is not much,

three or four days’ work with a team is not much,” he said. “That’s

always going to be the case whenever there’s a managerial change in

the middle of the season, the person who comes in won’t have had

much time to really stamp his ideas on the team and it takes time

to do that. “If you’re going to work and try and prepare a team and

coach a team to play in a certain way, you’re not going to do that

after one week because that would be the territory of the magic

wand.”