Hodgson hails his Midlands 'top-dogs'

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West Bromwich Albion boss Roy Hodgson has laid down the gauntlet, and challenged his players to finish top of the table - in terms of Midlands-based clubs in the Barclays Premier League.

The Baggies confirmed their top-flight status on Saturday after a 1-0 victory over Everton, and Hodgson wants to take his side to the next level in an attempt to establish his newly inherited 'yoyo' club in the highest echelon of English football.

"When I came here our goal was, by hook or by crook, to keep us in this league, which we have done with some aplomb," he said.

"It's been a pretty good spell, 19 points from 11 games - an average of nearly two points per game is like Manchester United, isn't it, right up the top."


Hodgson praised his side for their fine run of form and now wants to ensure the bragging rights stay at the Hawthorns, as the end of the season fast approaches.

"I've got to say it has been a wonderful season and we've got a very good chance now of finishing as top dogs in the Birmingham area.

"I think it's a while since that happened and it is an achievement because Birmingham and Aston Villa are big clubs."

Having revitalized the Baggies since taking over in February, Hodgson has guided West Brom to a respectable mid-table finish, proving wrong early-season doubters who predicted an end-of-season relegation dogfight.

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