Belfast Telegraph

Irvine not worried by Olsson form

Head coach Alan Irvine has defended under-fire Jonas Olsson and insisted he should not be hung out to dry at West Brom.

The defender has made costly mistakes in the Baggies' last two games with his position under threat as Joleon Lescott nears a return from a knee injury ahead of Sunday's Barclay's Premier League trip to Tottenham.

Olsson's gaffes cost goals in defeats to Swansea and Everton but Irvine has backed the Sweden international to recover.

He said: "I'd like to think that Jonas' career would be judged over a long period rather than a couple of games.

"Before I got here he was a player that I admired, a player I always thought played well whenever we were against West Brom.

"He's an international player, he's played hundreds of games and he's played really well without making mistakes.

"I don't think we can necessarily look at two mistakes in two games as being the start of a worrying trend."

Albion go to White Hart Lane winless in the league this season and second bottom in the early table.

Ben Foster's error also gifted Kevin Mirallas a goal in Everton's 2-0 win at The Hawthorns last week and Irvine issued his support to the England goalkeeper.

"He came in and immediately apologised to everybody," he said.

"It's a mistake that you don't see him making and you wouldn't expect to see him making for another 100 games, so it's one of those things.

"It was terrible timing for us, it made it extremely difficult for us to get back into the game and he knows that.

"But I can't go slamming Ben Foster for making a mistake, because we all make them. He made good saves after that."

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