West Bromwich Albion have moved swiftly to allay any fears that Richard Chaplow's cartilage operation is anything other than routine.

The 21-year-old midfielder, who has spent the last three months on loan at Southampton, has been pencilled in for a minor cartilage operation next Tuesday.

He was replaced at half-time during Southampton's April 15 fixture with Stoke.

However, it is ostensibly an operation to clean out the problematic area and Albion manager Bryan Robson doesn't envisage any setbacks in Chaplow's projected recovery.

"He will report back to the club next season and be an integral part of the squad," said Robson. "We've had good reports from his time at Southampton, so we're looking for an improvement again next year."

Chaplow arrived at The Hawthorns in January 2005 for £1.5 million from Burnley, but has failed to cement a regular midfield position at Albion thus far. He has only made nine first team starts.

Meanwhile, one Albion midfielder who is determined not to return to The Hawthorns after his loan spell expires is Jason Koumas.

The 26-year-old fell out with both Robson and his predecessor Gary Megson before linking up with Cardiff on a season-long loan deal in August.

He is willing for the clubs to negotiate a deal that will enable him to move to Ninian Park on a permanent basis. A fee in the region of £1.5 million is believed to be sufficient to satisfy Albion's needs although Koumas will only go to the Championship outfit on the proviso that Jones remains at the helm of the Welsh club.

"If Dave Jones is the manager of Cardiff for the next few years, then I want to be here as well," said Koumas.

While Robson is prepared to off-load Koumas, he insists he is under no pressure to sell any more of his starlets if the club are relegated at the end of this season.

Tottenham and Arsenal are already pursuing Curtis Davies while assets such as Zoltan Gera and Tomasz Kuszczak are also likely to come under scrutiny from Premiership clubs.

"Do I fear losing any of them if go down? There is no problem with that," said Robson. "They are all tied up to stay here on long-term contracts.

"What I will say is everyone has got a price, but it will have to be a big price for any of those players for me to let the kids go because I am trying to build a better team.

"I would not be under pressure to sell anyone. We haven't got to get rid of anyone if we do go down."

Meanwhile, the Baggies have decided to cancel their annual Player of the Year Awards night that was originally scheduled for next Tuesday.

With Robson's beleaguered troops set to entertain West Ham the previous evening, it was deemed inappropriate to hold a ceremony just one day after their relegation could be confirmed.