Irvine, whose team have started to find form after overcoming Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 last weekend, claimed that it was vital he deflected the spotlight away from his under-performing team.
Irvine told reporters: "It's important you protect the players, no-one wants to play badly and sometimes things go wrong and players make mistakes.
"We have to live with that. We are there to support them when they make those mistakes and it's a vitally important part of the role.
"You have to pick them back up again, it's part of the role to protect players different times. You have different conversations in private than you do in public."
West Brom will look to build on last week's win as they host Burnley on Sunday.