Steve Clarke reveals his gratitude towards Chris Hughton

The West Brom manager says he hasn't forgotten how the Canaries' boss, when in charge of Newcastle, offered him a job opportunity while he was out of work
West Brom manager Steve Clarke says he will never forget the helping hand he recieved from Chris Hughton.

The Baggies' boss revealed how a phone call from Hughton almost ended with the pair working together at Newcastle.

Clarke was out of a job at the time and says he will always be grateful towards the Norwich manager for offering him a helping hand.

"It's more than the fact that Chris has done a great job at Norwich," Clarke told The Daily Mail.

"He is a good person. When he was at Newcastle, we had a little conversation about me going up there to join him. At the time I was out of the game and I appreciated the fact that he took the time out to call me.

"But it just goes to show you. Newcastle got rid of him a couple of weeks later. He lost his job when maybe he shouldn't have done.

"However, I've not forgotten the call."

Clarke and Hughton are great examples of assistants stepping up to become successful managers in their own right.

The West Brom manager believes more clubs should be prepared to hire coaches who don't have a glittering playing career behind them.

"We have spent a lot of hours working on our coaching badges, doing spells with the youth and reserve teams," he continued.

"Clubs are now looking at that and think that we have done our time and educated ourselves properly.

"After the success of Arsene Wenger and Jose Mourinho, maybe they are looking at the whole education process and not just picking the name of someone who was once a good player.

"Now there are a decent number of people who have had good careers as players and have chosen a different path to educate ourselves before stepping into the hot-seat."

Clarke had a solid career as a right-back with St Mirren, Chelsea and Scotland, winning three major trophies during his time at Stamford Bridge before embarking on a coaching career as assistant manager to the likes of Ruud Gullit, Jose Mourinho, Gianfranco Zola and Kenny Dalglish at Newcastle, Chelsea, West Ham and Liverpool, respectively, before landing the top job at the Hawthorns.

Hughton, also a full-back, enjoyed a fine career at Tottenham (where he won domestic and European honours), West Ham, Brentford and the Republic of Ireland. From 1993 to 2007 he was a coach at White Hart Lane, then became coach, caretaker manager and manager with Newcastle before being appointed boss at Birmingham and then moving to Carrow Road to replace Paul Lambert last summer.

Now the two managers meet at the Hawthorns on Saturday when Albion host Norwich.