Albion’s Clarke parks it at West Brom

Posted On 13 Jul 2021 at 7:23 pm

Brighton and Hove Albion defender Matt Clarke is joining West Bromwich Albion on a season-long loan.

The 24-year-old centre-half joined Albion in 2019 and has spent the past two seasons on loan with Derby County.

Shortly after joining the Albion he was sent out on loan to Championship side Derby County, going on to win the Rams’ Player of the Season as Phillip Cocu’s side fell just short of the play-off places.

He was back at Pride Park last season, this time playing an important role in keeping the Rams in the Championship.

Albion’s pathway development manager David Weir said: “Matt has done very well in his time with Derby and shown he is very adept at Championship level and there was no shortage of clubs interested in taking him on loan.

“Having just come down from the Premier League, West Bromwich Albion will be pushing for an instant return to the top level – and Matt will no doubt go there with that aim.

“We will be monitoring his progress and wish him well for the new season ahead.”

Clarke began his career with Ipswich Town as a schoolboy before signing a scholarship in 2013.

He made his senior debut for the club in August 2014, before signing a professional two-year deal a month later.

He initially joined Portsmouth on a six-month loan deal in the summer of 2015, later making his move to Fratton Park permanent and becoming an integral part of the side.

In his first season with Pompey, he helped the team to reach the play-off semi-finals, and the following season he was part of the team which clinched promotion to League One.

Clarke remained a mainstay in the team after that promotion, becoming Portsmouth captain, and made 88 appearances in League One in in his last two years there.

He was a key member of the Portsmouth team that won the EFL Trophy at Wembley and reached the League One play-off semi-finals.

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