FOCUSSED

The West Brom goalkeeper Ben Foster has said that his only focus this season will be to help West Brom still in the Premier league. His comments are little bit surprising given that they come at a time when West Brom are currently are challenging for the top four positions.

The club appointed the former Liverpool and Chelsea assistant manager Steve Clarke as the replacement for Roy Hodgson in the summer. He has had a great start to his best career after guiding the team to the fourth position in the Premier league table ahead of the visit by the European champions.

Despite this good start, Ben Foster has said that he has not changed the focus yet because the ultimate aim will be to get to the magical 40 point mark that will almost ensure Premier league safety. Two goals from Peter Odemwingie helped West Brom secure another 2-0 win in the Premier league last weekend. They have a very good record at home having been beaten only once in the Premier league this season. Ben Foster has said that it is easy to get carried away by the good start, and hence, he wants to maintain the focus on the main objective – avoiding relegation.

"It's a bit of a cliche but we are really not getting carried away and we are taking each game as it comes, and we will see where we go. We will get to the 40-point mark as soon as possible we and see what games we have got left. Fantastic credit to bounce back after two difficult weeks. We spoke before the game about making sure we get our season back on track tonight," said Foster ahead of the Chelsea match. West Brom have 20 points from the opening 11 matches of the season.

CLARKE IMPRESSED WITH FOSTER

The manager of West Bromwich Albion, Steve Clarke, has praised the goalkeeper, Ben Foster, for his performance in the match against Fulham .West Brom lost that match by 3-0. Despite West Brom’s defeat in that match, Foster’s performance was fantastic. He made a number of brilliant saves. As per Clarke, Foster has got amazing goal keeping skills and that’s why the club had invested so much in him last summer. He has got quick reflexes and he showed his class against Fulham. He is expected to make such kind of saves.

However, Foster’s effort didn’t save his team from a humiliating defeat. Fulham completely outclassed West Brom in the match. Dimitar Berbatov took his team ahead in the match in the 32nd minute. Alexander Kacaniklic got rid of Billy Jones and passed the ball to Berbatov who was near the box. The Bulgarian striker smashed the ball into the right hand corner of the net. Just a few minutes later, Peter Odemwingie was shown red card and the West Brom team was reduced to 10 players. This was a big blow for West Brom.

Fulham’s lead was doubled in the very first minute of the second half when Berbatov found the net for the second time in the match by capitalizing on the penalty earned by the team. The Fulham players kept on attacking and created some opportunities for the third goal, but, they didn’t manage to go past Ben Foster who was at his very best in the match. Just 1 minute before the end of the game, Steve Sidwell scored the third goal for Fulham and secured the victory of his team. The manager of Fulham, Martin Jol, would have been delighted with the effort of his boys in the match. Fulham will play its next match against Wigan Athletic on 22nd of September at the DW Stadium.

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FOSTER WANTS BROM STAY

West Brom goalkeeper Ben Foster has said that he has wants to end his career with his current club West Brom. The 29-year-old goalkeeper has been moving from one club to another in the last few seasons, but he has finally found a home according to the former Manchester United shot stopper.

The 29-year-old sealed a £ 3.5 million move from Birmingham city only last month and he is of the opinion that he wants this move to be the last of his career. He has also said that he had turned down the opportunity to join Premier league rivals QPR because he was not sure about their future in the top division of English football.

Ben Foster was once regarded as the next England goalkeeper when he was playing for Manchester United. However, he was not getting regular first-team football at Old Trafford due to the presence of Edwin van Der Sar. This is absolutely led to his departure from the Manchester club, while he has been on the road travelling since then. New West Brom manager Steve Clarke has made it a priority to bring him to the hawthorns and Ben Foster has said that he is extremely delighted with the faith shown by the former Chelsea assistant manager.

“I have no interest in moving south or north. I hope this is my last move. My kids are going to be settled in schools soon. My wife loves the area too and those are the sort of things people don’t always see. People just see footballers and no more, but there is a lot more to us than that. We are people who have families and it is important that they are settled and happy. We are now looking for our final family home,” said West Brown goalkeeper Ben Foster.

BROM OPEN TALKS

West Brom have started talks with Birmingham City over the potential transfer of goalkeeper Ben Foster. The technical director of the Midlands club has now confirmed this news.

Ben Foster represented West Brom in the Premier league last season after arriving on a loan deal, but it is thought that the Premier league club are interested in making the move permanent after having seen the former Man Utd goalkeeper impress during his one season at the club. West Brom finished the last season in the 10th position, which is a far cry from the relegation positions they were expected to occupy at the end of the season.

Ben Foster has said on a number of occasions that he would be extremely happy to make the move permanent because he was happy with life at West Brom. Even though West Brom are interested in securing his signature, the technical director of the club Dan Ashworth has confirmed that the club will not be held to ransom. As a result, they will be willing to pursue other targets if they are not able to come to an agreement with their arch rivals Birmingham city, who failed to return to the Premier league after failing in the play-offs last season.

"We've started discussions with Birmingham and we hope we can find a solution that suits them and suits us. If we can't, then no problem - we'll have to move on. But it's down to discussions with them. As with every transfer, the selling club has 'X' in mind and the buying club only value at 'Y' so you hope that you find a tipping point that suits both parties," said the technical director of the Midlands club Dan Ashworth.

Meanwhile, he has also rejected speculation that David Beckham is close to securing a West Ham move.

BROM BOSS SET FOR ENGLAND POST

West Brom manager Roy Hodgson was recently unveiled as the new England manager. However, he will continue to remain as the West Brom manager for the remaining two matches of the Premier league season.

This has not prevented the club from looking at the possible replacements now itself. A lot of big names have been linked with the job including the likes of former West Ham manager Alan Curbishley. Alan Curbishley has been out of work for quite a while now, but it is thought that he is now ready to return to management after doing a lot of punditry work on television.

Birmingham City manager Chris Hughton, though, is believed to be the front-runner for the job given his experience of having managed both in the Championship and the Premier league with great success. Chris Hughton has managed to lead Birmingham into the play-offs position, despite the huge number of well-documented financial problems surrounding the club. Even though he has not spent a lot of money, he has been able to get the best out of his players at his disposal. Many also regard him to be extremely unlikely to get the sack from the Newcastle United managerial position.

"The board will now concentrate on the important task of appointing a new head coach to continue our project as we prepare for a third successive season in the Barclays Premier League. We did not want Roy to leave and he will be a tough act to follow. Roy's appointment as England manager is obviously disappointing news for the club as we would have liked him to sign a new contract, which was in the process of negotiation, and remain here," said club chairman Jeremy Peace regarding the appointment of a new manager and the disappointment of losing Roy Hodgson.

FOSTER HAPPY IN RETIREMENT

Former England goalkeeper Ben Foster has said that he is more than happy to be involved only with his club West Bromwich Albion. Ben Foster announced his international retirement last season after failing to make it into the first-team spot.

He has been playing second fiddle to Joe Hart for most of the international matches under Fabio Capello. He said that he initially choose to retire due to the number of niggling injuries he was sustaining. Ben Foster accounted the number of international matches that he had to be involved due to this aspect.

Now, Ben Foster says that he is more than happy to stay retired due to the fact that he has been able to avoid a number of injuries as result of it. One of the main reasons for people to think about Ben Foster coming back from retirement is due to the lack of a second choice goalkeeper to Joe Hart. Even though the Manchester City goalkeeper has established himself as the first choice within England ranks, Fabio Capello has been unable to find a suitable replacement if anything happens to the Manchester City man. Ben Foster used to be that player, but in his absence, there has been none to step up to the plate.

"The main reason to stop playing for England was to get rid of any niggling injuries - and at the moment I have stayed injury free. I am happy with the way things are going at the moment," Ben Foster said when asked about a possible return from retirement. So far, Ben Foster has played in 14 matches for West Brom and has kept three clean sheets for them. He has been instrumental in West Brom surviving relegation battle up until now, and it seems that the former Manchester United goalkeeper wants it that way.

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