London: West Bromwich Albion full-back Steven Reid said on Sunday that the club`s players had been left in "complete shock" by the abrupt dismissal of head coach Steve Clarke.
Clarke was sacked late on Saturday, following a run of four consecutive defeats that left the Midlands club two points above the Premier League relegation zone.
The 50-year-old Scot led West Brom to an eighth-place finish last season -- their highest in the Premier League era -- and Reid says that the players had no inkling that he was about to be shown the door.
"There is a shock. Sometimes in a dressing room you get a sense a change is coming, but this has come as a complete shock," he told BBC television programme Match of the Day Extra.
"In recent weeks we can only put the results down to a drop in confidence. In the Premier League, when you go on a run of three or four games without a victory it can affect the confidence of the lads and then you are looking at ways you can get back on track."
West Brom are yet to appoint a successor to Clarke, with assistant coach Keith Downing due to take control of first-team affairs on a temporary basis.
Reid backed the West Brom board to pick the right man to succeed Clarke.
"You`ve got to leave that decision to the board," he said.
"The last three appointments have gone really well -- Roberto Di Matteo got us promotion, Roy Hodgson got us mid-table security and Steve Clarke took us to our highest Premier League position last season."