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Slaven Bilic won’t hit West Brom panic button

By Joseph Masi | West Bromwich Albion | Published:

Slaven Bilic insists Albion aren’t panicking about their lack of goals – but the head coach has warned his misfiring frontline they cannot rely on talent alone.

A dejected Slaven Bilic (AMA)

The Baggies 1-0 loss at Brentford on Friday means Bilic’s side has now failed to score in their last four Championship outings.

With attacking options such as Matheus Pereira, Grady Diangana, Callum Robinson, Matt Phillips, Kyle Edwards and Kamil Grosicki, Albion’s frontline is arguably the strongest in the division.

But they failed to find the target against both Wigan and Swansea before lockdown.

And they have struggled for match sharpness since football’s big restart with Blues and Brentford both keeping them at bay.

But while Bilic isn’t panicking, he has told his creative players they need to work harder.

“Nobody is panicking but we don’t have to act like everything is cool,” he said.

“We have to do better. We have to be even more aggressive, we have to be better on the ball, express ourselves. Against Brentford, we didn’t get into our rhythm, we couldn’t impose ourselves.”

“Yes we have good players but we must raise the level – we can’t wait for it.

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“We mustn’t lose belief, but on the other hand, we have to be sharper in the box, more determined to come into the box.

“We have to make better runs, we have to make better opportunities.

“We can’t keep going on like ‘we’re gonna score, we’re gonna score’ like it’s going to come by default.

“We have to get it back. It’s not going to come back by default.”

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Meanwhile, reports have linked Albion with a move for former Manchester City goalkeeper Joe Hart.

The Baggies are likely to be on the hunt for a new keeper to provide competition for Sam Johnstone in the summer.

Hart, who came through the ranks at Shrewsbury, will be available on a free transfer after Burnley decided against extending his stay at Turf Moor beyond the current campaign.

Last week, Shrewsbury boss Sam Ricketts revealed he held talks with Hart over a potential return to Shropshire.

But the former England international told him he wants to continue playing at a higher level.

“It’s something that I put to him and his people, I said ‘do you fancy coming back’, but he wants to continue his career at the highest possible level,” Ricketts said.

“He has interest from top level teams so it’s not going to be one for us, sentiment doesn’t rule the head on this one.”

Alongside Albion, Celtic and Derby have been credited with an interest in Hart.

Joseph Masi

By Joseph Masi
Football MMPJ - @josephmasi_star

West Bromwich Albion reporter.

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