Alan Pardew admits to selection errors as West Brom fall to Manchester United defeat
By Michael Hincks
Last Updated: 17/12/17 6:28pm
Alan Pardew admits he failed to pick the "right team" as West Brom fell to a narrow 2-1 defeat to Manchester United at The Hawthorns.
A sluggish start from West Brom saw United go two goals up at the break thanks to Romelu Lukaku's header and a deflected effort from Jesse Lingard.
Pardew brought Gareth Barry on for Claudio Yacob at half-time, and it was the substitute who set up a frantic finale when tapping in the first goal of the Pardew era after 77 minutes.
However, West Brom could not find an equaliser, and with their winning run extending to 15 Premier League games, Pardew conceded he should have freshened up the team after their 0-0 draw at Liverpool in midweek.
"In hindsight, the team I picked was not the right team. I should have put some fresh legs in there," Pardew told Sky Sports after the match.
"They did so well at Liverpool, and as a new manager I wanted to show some faith in those players, but I should have maybe made two or three changes.
"We looked leggy, we looked not up to the ball. But in the second half we were a lot better and had a lot more conviction to our play - that was the problem."
West Brom were second best for the majority of the game on Sunday, though they had United sweating after Barry scored their first goal in more than six hours of football.
While Pardew said he was relieved to see his side find the target, he admitted that passages of play for West Brom fans to get excited by were few and far between.
"We've got a full stadium, playing Manchester United, but we never really got the crowd going. I thought the crowd were quite rightly very quiet today, and that was down to us," Pardew added
"We're at home. You have to generate more excitement, more moments than we did today.
"Thank goodness we scored, for our fans really, to give them a lift that we can score a goal. We know this isn't going to decide our season this game, it's the ones going forward. It might be a lesson we've learnt today.
"[Confidence] is definitely a factor in terms of risk. You can't play this game unless you take risks. We didn't take risks with our passing. We had a lack of energy and I have to take some blame for that."