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James McClean working hard for Albion recall

Sport | Published:

Winger James McClean is exactly the type of character West Brom want in their ranks, according to Baggies assistant boss Dave Kemp.

The Republic of Ireland international has recently lost his place to Craig Gardner and hasn't started any of the last three games.

For the first time since he joined the club for £1.5million from Wigan last summer, McClean is struggling to get into the team.

But Kemp claims the 26-year-old's reaction has been perfect and exactly the sort of response you'd expect from one of the club's hardest-working players on the pitch.

He said: "He's the type of character who will do well here, because he doesn't sit and sulk.

"He doesn't say 'I should be in the team', he rolls his sleeves up and tries to earn his place that way. He's got a fantastic worth ethic.

"He's still had a role to play even though he hasn't started. He's come off the bench and been a factor."

The players were given the weekend off but McClean posted a video on social media of him completing solo football drills back in his home town of Derry.

His endless running endeared himself to Albion fans early on, and the wide man has been a 90-minute mainstay for the majority of the season. But his fiery attitude has got him in trouble a couple of times.

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The former Sunderland man was warned by the FA for celebrating in front of the visiting fans at the end of Albion's 1-0 win over the Black Cats in October, and he was sent off for a reckless retaliatory challenge on Bournemouth's Adam Smith in December.

For all his endeavour, McClean only has two goals this season and Gardner has scored two in two matches after replacing him in the team.

Albion boss Tony Pulis added he's resting the former Wigan man because of tiredness, and the coaches have been impressed with his response.

Kemp said: "He wants to play every minute and that's the type of player we want. He wants to be in the team. He works very hard and wants to do everything he can to get back in the team."

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