James Morrison, the West Bromwich Albion midfielder was just a teenage ball boy for his first club Middlesbrough when the club made it big. And now, the Baggies star believes former French international Nicolas Anelka will have the same effect on the club that Fabrizio Ravanelli had on the Riverside club.
Steve Clarke clinched the surprise signing of the former Real Madrid, Liverpool and Manchester City player from Juventus in the close season and having played with him already on pre-season, Morrison cannot wait to line up alongside him when the team begins the new Premier League campaign in about two weeks.
And the Scotland international is also hopeful that Nicolas Anelka can raise the standards as Steve Clarke targets a few more signings before the club kicks off the new season on the 17th of August. Morrison remembers the effect the signings of former Italian international Ravanelli and Brazilian international and future World Cup winner Juninho had at the Riverside Stadium in the middle of the 1990s.
However, he will also remember clearly the slide Middlesbrough went through after that initial sizzle fizzled out and were relegated to the Championship after a few years and the 27 year old is hopeful under the management of Steve Clarke, West Bromwich Albion can avoid going through the same phase that Boro did all those years back.
He stated that when Ravanelli came, he was just an academy player and ball boy and that’s how he developed a love for the club. The club reached Wembley a couple of times and it was an experience to cherish forever. And Morrison is also hopeful if West Bromwich Albion can make a few more big name signings like that of Nicolas Anelka, the club will be in line for big things in the future.