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West Brom's Pepe Mel backs Scott Sinclair to make an impact

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Pepe Mel today claimed Albion misfit Scott Sinclair can still become a "great player" despite the loanee's exile from the Baggies squad.

Sinclair has been axed from Mel's squad for the last two matches after failing to make an impact following his summer loan switch from Manchester City. But Mel believes the winger could still help his chances of a permanent move to The Hawthorns by performing in the final month.

And the Spaniard says the 25-year-old ex-Chelsea man can still resurrect his career despite two frustrating seasons with City and Albion, during which he has made just six league starts and his relationship with former Coronation Street actress Helen Flanagan has attracted more headlines than his football.

"He is an intelligent and professional player," said Mel. "He's been slightly unfortunate in the games in which he's come on, because things haven't worked out well for him. But he's definitely got a future."

Mel insists Sinclair could still make an impact in the remaining six matches. "We're all playing for our futures in six games," said the Spaniard.

"If he continues to work as hard as he is now, then he'll have no problems in becoming a great player."

Meanwhile, Mel insists Zoltan Gera is on course to play again for Albion despite a hamstring injury ruling him out for up to a month. Gera's contract expires in the summer, when he is expected to leave, but Mel said: "If I had to bet on whether he will play again, I would say yes."

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