Deputy chairman and chief executive Paul Barber has labelled Albion's crunch clash against Cardiff as a "test of our character and togetherness".

He has urged fans to stay behind Chris Hughton's team to help them put things right.

Barber, writing in his programme notes, said: "There are no excuses for Saturday’s hugely disappointing performance against AFC Bournemouth. Everyone was hurting over the weekend, not least our players, coaches and staff. It was a very bad day for us.

"At the highest levels of football, and particularly in the Premier League, even the smallest drop in standards is severely punished. We all know that. And players, coaches and staff certainly know that.

"So, tonight’s game is a test of our character - and our togetherness. We can't afford to dwell on a very disappointing weekend, and our players and staff need your confidence and your support to help put things right.

"We've been tested before. We've overcome much bigger setbacks. A great strength of this football club is its ability to pull together at important times. I'm very sure our fans, players and staff will do so again tonight."

Barber has stressed the importance of staying in the Premier League for the club beyond the first team.

He said: "Our Premier League status helps to fund the development of young players through our academy, as well as our growing women's and girls' programme, and of course our support for Albion in the Community.

"All of these things are very important to the continued growth and development of our club, so you can be sure that we will be doing everything possible to get the results we need from our remaining games."