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WHEN your pals are among the best cricketers and footballers in the world, and when you are named after one of the movie greats, you would expect to walk through life with a smile.

And that is just how 31-year-old Trinidad and Tobago international Clint Marcelle greeted his move to Albion.

Marcelle signed a short-term contract until the end of the season this week after being frozen out at Barnsley ever since Danny Wilson moved across Yorkshire to Sheffield Wednesday.

Blocked by red tape from making his debut at Blackburn yesterday, Marcelle hopes to make his debut next Saturday against Blues providing a problem over his work permit can be sorted out.

But his skills do not stop on the pitch. Off it he is just the business as well.

Marcelle's life story is straight out of the big screen and Albion could do a lot worse than not only play their new signing, but use him for financial advice.

Friends with former Villa favourite Dwight Yorke and ex-West Indian cricket captain Brian Lara, who resigned his post this week, Marcelle was born in Trinidad but raised in the United States and even gained a degree in Business Management at New York University.

"It's something to fall back on", he said.

"Dwight, Brian and myself know each other very well. We talk a lot on the phone and go out in the summer."

Married to Kathy, with eight-year-old daughter Charice and three-year-old son Clint junior, he says with a wry smile that he was named after Hollywood film star Clint Eastwood.

"My mother has told me she was in the cinema watching one of his movies when she started getting the contractions," he said.

"And why would my own mother lie to me!

"My family all live in America, and my wife's family are over there or in Trinidad, but I consider myself 100 per cent Trinidadian.

"I love cricket but I was never going to be another Lara."

He is proud to have been one of his country's best ever football exports.

"I've played senior level football since I was 15 and am still playing it. I think that says it all," he said.

Marcelle is also a huge fan of Albion boss Brian Little.

"It's a brilliant move for me," he said.

"It's a good ball park to come to and a great manager. It speaks for itself what sort of a manager he is.

"I've always wanted to play for him and I'm delighted to be here. Just like Danny Wilson, Brian likes to play the game with the ball on the ground and pass it, and that's what I enjoy.

"He asked me if I'd like to play for him until the end of the season and I'm relishing it.

"I'd have liked to stay longer but he said 'Let's see how it goes and take it from there' and obviously I'm hoping it works out."

Albion coach Cyrille Regis was another reason for making the switch: "Ever since I moved to this country, Cyrille and his brother Dave, who was at Barnsley with me, have tucked me under their wing and showed me the ropes," he said.

"I am totally grateful to them and always will be."

Marcelle was a revelation when he first burst onto the scene with The Tykes, scoring ironically on his debut for them at The Hawthorns in the first game of the 1996 season in a 4-1 romp.

"It was the first game of the season and my first game in English football and will stick with me forever," he said.

His electric pace off the mark confounded the Baggies defence that day and proved too hot for some of the best defences in the Premiership the following season. Everyone has their strengths and weaknesses," he said.

"And pace just happens to be mine."

But the promotion of Scot John Hendrie to the manager's chair brought about a quick change in his fortunes. Frozen out of the side for the past 18 months he even found himself at lowly Scunthorpe United.

Diplomatically, he refuses to talk openly of any rift between the pair.

"The new manager had different ideas to the one before. He brought in his own players and things didn't work out for me," he said.

"Unfortunately, some players, not only myself, paid the price and I played reserve team football mainly to get myself in the shop window, get myself playing again and try to put everything behind me. Scunthorpe was a good move and I started enjoying my football again. And that's exactly what I want to do here."

Marcelle now says he aims to keep his new club in the First Division with next weekend's tough derby against Blues his first outing.

"I want to help Albion to safety and stay longer at the club. That's my main priority. I don't want to go to another Division One club. I want to help this club and the rest of the players to stay up.

"This is a massive club with a lot of history behind it. It is a club any footballer would love to play for.

"I had been hoping and praying to play at Blackburn but things don't always work out the way we want."