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Ahead of West Brom’s trip to Craven Cottage on Saturday, Baggies boss Steve Clarke says Fulham are exactly the sort of side that his new charges should seek to emulate.

The former Chelsea midfielder and coach has watched as the Whites have slowly established themselves as a top flight club over the past decade and as he seeks to build on the solid foundations left by Roy Hodgson, who guided Fulham to their Europa League final back in 2010, sees the Cottagers are as a model for his own ambitions in the Midlands.

They have acquited themselves really well in the Premier League. They are an established Premier League club and that’s what we’re aiming for here.

They are probably run slightly different to the way the chairman runs things here. But they are an important benchmark. They’re a team that has come through the leagues, they spend money without over-spending and they’ve managed to put together a really good squad of players that is competitive in the Premier League.

Clarke will be hoping that Martin Jol’s side don’t take out the frustrations of their League Cup exit at Sheffield Wednesday and a hammering at the hands of West Ham on the Baggies when the domestic season restarts this weekend. West Brom are unbeaten in four games and the new manager looks likely to name an unchanged side to the one that beat Everton on September 1, which could mean the returning Zoltan Gera has to make do with a spot on the substitutes’ bench.