Hodgson - Peter can be better

Baggies boss expects striker to return to his best form

Peter Odemwingie: West Brom striker has been backed to rediscover his best form by Roy Hodgson

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Roy Hodgson is confident Peter Odemwingie will recapture his best form after admitting the West Brom striker is not at the same level as last season.

Odemwingie scored 15 goals during his debut campaign in the Premier League and the Nigerian striker was rewarded with a new three-year contract in August.

However, the 30-year-old has netted just twice in eight appearances this term and has been overshadowed by the performances of summer signing Shane Long.

With Republic of Ireland international Long currently sidelined by injury, Odemwingie has a chance to cement his place in the team again providing he overcomes a knock to the knee ahead of Saturday's trip to Arsenal.

Stop-start season

"Peter knows he can do a lot better, we all do," said Baggies boss Hodgson. "He's had a bit of a stop-start season with one or two injuries he picked up.

"We haven't had that fortunate situation we had last season when for about 10 games in a row he was fully fit, playing and training at the level he wants to be at.

"But we know his qualities, what he can do, and we know what value he has to us.

"It is just a matter of time before we see that again but I'm sure he'd agree he's not playing to the level he was at the end of last season."

Hodgson, though, has played down the suggestion that the arrival of Long from Reading has had a negative impact on Odemwingie's contribution to the team.

He added: "Most players are grateful if they've had to shoulder a heavy burden to have it shared.

"I don't subscribe it (Odemwingie's form) is down to Shane coming in and doing well.

"He plays with small margins and, when things aren't going well, the margins always seem to be against you. Then you try to play catch-up. Then you try to over complicate matters."