Mental strength was a characteristic that Bryan Robson possessed in spades during-his playing career and he has called on his struggling troops to follow suit or face the consequences.
Albion's manager questioned his side's professionalism at the weekend after they conceded a goal within 30 seconds of the restart against Newcastle and believes mental strength will be a crucial component if they are to avoid relegation.
They showed their attacking prowess to the full for a 20-minute spell between Newcastle's first and second goals.
But Robson is baffled as to why they concede goals before they start to show their true colours.
Robson has always publicly backed his players but is reaching the end of his tether after a series of mistakes from a team who often seem to suffer from an unnecessary inferiority complex.
He said: "We have started off OK in a lot of games this season.
"But we have to go a goal behind before stepping up a gear and starting to play like we can.
"I want that to happen before we go a goal behind.
"It is definitely a mental thing and that is up to the players as individuals to cope with that.
"They are the ones who have got to get the best out of themselves and there have been a lot of games this season where that has been a problem.
"The goal we conceded against Newcastle comes down to mentality as it shouldn't happen at this level.
"If it keeps happening then we will find ourselves in trouble but, like last season, we are already in a relegation fight.
"Everybody may as well get themselves prepared for that scenario, as that is the way it is going to be."
However, Robson was pleased with the performance of his young central defender Curtis Davies after facing England's top striker for the first time.
Michael Owen scored a brace of goals to help inflict another Hawthorns horror show on Albion's supporters but Robson believes Davies gained valuable experience
Robson said: "Curtis is a young lad who is learning the game and still progressing.
"I thought he was excellent in the first half against Newcastle and when you go a goal down you have to be strong mentally to be a success in the Premiership, as the pressure comes on to you.
"For 20 minutes after they scored we battered them. And that is against a team like Newcastle but the problem for me, as a manager, is that we have done that too often.
"We should have got back into the game against Birmingham, Charlton and Newcastle and the last two are teams that will be in the top half of the division.
"We turned it round and put them under pressure but we don't do it when it's goalless. That is what I want from my players; I don't want them to wait until we are a goal down."
Robson's annoyance was tangible after the game on Sunday when he sent out club captain Darren Moore and captain for the day, Neil Clement, to face the music in the post- match press conference.
The two players faced the massed ranks of the media and gave honest assessments, with Moore being particularly candid and holding the team solely culpable for their defeat.
Robson says their response to questioning vindicated his tough stance.
He said: "I have always protected my players but I thought the time had come when the players had to speak for themselves.
"If they were going to blame me, or my staff, or blame the way we prepare for matches then it is an ideal opportunity for them to do so.
"But we conceded a goal within 30 seconds of our own kick-off, which was just bad professionalism. I thought that showed weakness within our boys. I have told them that because it can't happen at this level.
"There wasn't much in the game in the first half and we were giving as good as we got.
"They have very good players so we had to be at our very best to compete but in this game you have to make your own breaks and your own luck.
"Because of our defensive frailties we got beaten by Newcastle; it wasn't bad luck or bad officials, it was our bad play."