Belfast Telegraph

Hodgson ready for contract talks

West Brom head coach Roy Hodgson expects discussions over his future to "hot up a bit" in the near future.

Hodgson's current contract runs out this summer and several players have indicated his remaining at The Hawthorns will have a bearing on deciding their own futures. But the former Inter Milan and Liverpool boss wants to continue managing at Premier League level and needs assurances Albion are thinking along the same lines with their plans for next season.

Hodgson said: "I have said on many occasions that I like the club, like the people and am enjoying myself. We are approaching that stage now where no doubt the discussions will hot up a bit. It's nice to think that players would to some extent base their decisions on me. I am flattered to hear that, but of course, I also must see what is best for me."

He added: "To some extent the two things are tied together. If I am going to continue working year after year, I am going to do it at the level I feel I should be working at, which is the Premier League."

Hodgson has transformed the fortunes of West Brom in his 15 months in charge but knows the club have to keep progressing to maintain that status.

He said: "I know how difficult it is to stay in the Premier League, I have experienced it with Fulham, I have experienced it here. No-one needs to persuade me how difficult it is every year.

"You start with high hopes but, to be frank, there are two thirds of the league that can't guarantee they are not going to be having a difficult season.

"The only way you are going to give yourself a chance of not having a difficult season is to have a good team to work with. It's clear the club would like me to stay but I still prefer to keep the door open for the moment.

"I want to make 100% certain when I look at a piece of paper and see and like what I'm going into next season with West Brom, then that will be the moment when it will be easy for me to put pen to paper.

"The fact is we have to be constantly looking to improve in every area. If you stop improving you go backwards. But I still need to think about that as well because relegation battles are tough when you are young, as you get older they get even harder."


From Belfast Telegraph