Express & Star

Matt Phillips thanks West Brom team mates for help through injury lay-off

Matt Phillips reckons he is getting stronger with every match after thanking his Albion team-mates for helping him through his long injury lay-off.

Phillips suffered an injury in Albion's FA Cup replay win over Chesterfield (Photo by Adam Fradgley/West Bromwich Albion FC via Getty Images).

Phillips went nearly seven months without playing a competitive fixture after undergoing surgery on a quad muscle in January but has started all five of the Baggies' Championship matches this term.

The 32-year-old wideman claims the kindness of colleagues helped ease the frustration of missing the second half of the previous campaign.

He said: “I've come off the back of five months out, which was difficult, doing your rehab and stuff without a game until August.

“With each performance and game now I am feeling stronger and much more like myself.

"I've spoken about the dressing room quite a bit in my time here but the boys make it enjoyable to be around.

"When you're a bit down and out of it and not connected as much, anyone in there can take the time to have a conversation and make you part of it, you go to games, it's just about creating steps and targets so you are stepping forward and making progress.

"It was difficult, doing the rehab trying to get fit to then go into the off-season, but I worked hard over the summer and during the off-season and hopefully I will see the benefits of that.”

Phillips is the club’s longest-serving current player after joining from QPR in 2016 and is hoping to secure a second promotion to the Premier League this season.

He continued: “The club has a knack for signing good people as well as good players, every day it's a joy to come and work with some of the people here, the younger lads and the senior boys.

"To have 20 or 22 players committed and fighting for one of the 11 spots available is good and drives standards.”