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The Baggies boss feels the funds available to other teams in the league are far superior to his...

West Bromwich Albion manager Tony Mowbray has stated that the club's relegation rivals have much deeper pockets and are able to spend big on big players, whereas he is restricted to a low budget.

His team's opponents yesterday Bolton wanderers spent £8 million on Sweden striker Johan Elmander last summer, and this is nearly double what Mowbray paid for the services of Borja Valero from Real Mallorca, the club's record signing.

The Baggies still sit at the bottom of the Premier League table five points from safety, and their situation is still far from certain.

Mowbray questioned whether his side were playing on an even playing field with the rest of the league in terms of financial muscle.

Speaking to Football365.com, Mowbray said, "We have found the Premier League tough. I could ask the question whether it is a level playing field.

"I know we shouldn't get judged as if it is a level playing field and in my own mind we are playing Bolton who have got a near £10million centre-forward (Elmander) playing against us.

"Then you have Kevin Davies who has damaged the Premier League for a few years with his physicality and his strength.

"We are a team who have come up into the Premier League. Yes, we have spent a few quid, but we have never spent £10million on a footballer.

"So every week, whether it is Bolton or Manchester United you are facing, you are playing against some pretty high-quality players that cost a lot of money.

"I don't take it too hard or too personally, but I don't think it is a level playing field and I am proud of the team when they perform like they did against Bolton.

"They were facing a team with more experience, are more expensive and, at times, are better players than ours - and yet I don't see the gulf on the pitch."

Despite this claim, Mowbray feels that his side has made silly mistakes and luck has not gone their way on the pitch.

"It is all about very fine margins," he continued. "Ultimately you get judged on the league table and the results and yet all season we have felt the fine margin between winning and losing has fallen the wrong side of the coin for us.

"Over the course of the season that probably suggests we haven't been quite good enough to get the three points on the days we felt we should or could have when the balance of the game was in our favour.

"For whatever reason, we have let a sloppy goal in which has been the case during the second half of the season.

"During the first half of the season I was talking about not having the right quality to finish off all the chances we had.

"You put those two factors together and ultimately we find ourselves where we are in this league and yet most weeks I feel there has not been a lot between the teams."

Mowbray has just eight more games to save his side from relegation, starting with probably the biggest game of the Baggies' season against Stoke City next weekend.

Nick Turner, Goal.com

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