Despite his incredibly long service at West Bromwich Albion, midfielder Chris Brunt continues to split the fanbase almost down the middle when it comes to his qualities on the pitch.
Having joined us way back in August 2007 for a reported £3million fee from Sheffield Wednesday, the 34-year-old has gone on to rack up well over 350 appearances for us and 2019/20 will be his 13th year at The Hawthorns.
It hasn’t always been plain sailing though and when West Brom struggle, Brunty is always one of the players who carry the flack for that.
This week with preparations for the coming campaign now well underway, he was interviewed by wba.co.uk as he reflected on last year’s Play-Off disappointment and his own sending off against Aston Villa, and the aim was clear, he wants us to go one step further this year and return to the top flight.
“As a team and as a squad you want to be at your best. You’ve got to be at your best personally and you want the team to be doing its best. This football club means a lot to me, I’ve spent a lot of my lifetime here, not just a lot of my career. I want this football club to do really well. Us doing well means getting back to the Premier League and making it better for everyone around the club. The back of last season, getting sent off in the playoff game, was really disappointing. We’ve had a few good weeks to look back on it now. The second leg especially, as a team and as a football club, the atmosphere around the place was great to be involved in. It’s gutting that things didn’t go our way that night and we’re not looking forward to a Premier League season. From my point of view I want to put that right and do whatever it takes to get us back in the Premier League.”
Reaction to his interview on social media was predictably mixed.
Shows how little the club has moved on.. shouldn’t be anywhere near the squad; should’ve been let go just like Olsson, McCauley etc etc
— AH (@aaronmhoey) July 15, 2019
This post shows our ambition, stick to the old boys and not sign anyone. Expect Morrison and Barry to resign
— Nath (@NateOJackson) July 15, 2019
Getting sent off in the play off semi final must be up there.
— machamp31 (@machamp312) July 15, 2019
We should be working now to get him to remain after playing days are over. Academy needs people like that now. Mean it. I would have super Kev and robbo back even GMac. Great pros who can inspire and good football people
— Luke Stokes (@lukestokes84) July 15, 2019
— Mr Haroon (@mr_haroon_) July 15, 2019
We should just sign Bomber and Simon Garner if we are going to let the “wand” keep going
— me (@matthews_boing) July 15, 2019
over the hill time to move on.
— darryl smith (@barrelwba10) July 15, 2019
Baggies legend ????⚪️
— Mattwba28 (@mattwba28) July 15, 2019
Time to move on, been a great servant but let’s face it he’s been paid handsomely for doing so. We need new blood & there are plenty of players out there, no need to break the bank either, EFL 1/2 & Championship to choose from #wba
— Mark (@DustpipeMark) July 15, 2019
— Stuart Hunt (@huntywbafc) July 15, 2019
Good lad to have in the squad as we go through this transition.
— eSportsYoda (@eSportsYoda) July 15, 2019
Good man Brunty , right behind ya fella
— Carl Burkitt ???????? (@baggyboy1878) July 15, 2019