Fulham were winless at the Hawthorns in the Premier League but it was the visitors who made the brighter start as West Brom struggled to make an impact.
Bulgaria international Dimitar Berbatov netted his seventh goal of the season to give Martin Jol’s men a deserved half-time lead before Romelu Lukaku equalised just after the restart.
The Baggies were much-improved in the second half and had chances to complete a comeback with Chris Brunt denied, but it was Alexander Kacaniklic who scored the winner in the 58th minute.
“I don’t think we played as we can do. First half we were way off the mark. I’m not sure if it was the consequence of four games in 10 days or not,” Clarke told BBC Sport.
“In the second half it was better, we done the hard work to get back into it but then we gave it away. We could not quite get the second equaliser.
“Nobody can question the character of the team. Right at the death, with a bit of luck, we would have got the goal that our second-half performance deserved.”
Meanwhile, Martin Jol said Fulham’s victory was the perfect way to start the new year after ending a four-game winless run in the Premier League.
“We are in a false position but the league doesn’t lie. Starting the new year with three points is great,” said Jol.
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