Date: 27th February 2017 at 1:06pm
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Gareth McAuley and Chris Brunt have both given their thoughts following the weekend’s victory over Bournemouth.

Hosting Bournemouth at The Hawthorns for the game, West Brom took the two one victory with goals coming from Craig Dawson and McAuley himself, and speaking to in his own post game press conference the 37 year old was delighted to have got the winner and his sixth goal of the season so far.

‘We knew it was going to be difficult, we’d seen a stat during the week that we hadn’t beaten Bournemouth in the Premier League. We wanted to try and put that right. Thankfully we were on the right end of the result. It was quite an early setback in the game, but this team just keeps producing at the minute and long may that continue. We fight back, never give up and there’s a great spirit, we keep going to the end. It was nice to get the result.’

As for his goal, he went on to add.

‘It fell nicely to me, they’re the ones you like when you can just tap it in. We work hard on set-pieces and we don’t make any apologies for it. It’s nice to get a goal but it’s also nice for it to count towards points for the lads.’

With that now being six goals for the campaign, he was asked why he was becoming a regular on the scoresheet.

‘People are asking me why? I can only think it’s partly because of the new rules, where people can’t hold you and wrestle you and you can get a move into the box. It’s certainly more difficult defending set-pieces. It’s maybe a reason why.’

With Craig Dawson going off in the game after a clash of heads, McAuley added.

‘He’s taken a sore one. I thought he looked in a bad way but he seems to be okay in the dressing room. Hopefully he’ll be able to muster up the fitness to play next weekend.’

And finally, 40 points have now been reached.

‘The first objective is to get to 40 points and we’ve got that. We’ve got a home game next week and we’re just focused on that. It will be another tough game – Palace are scrapping for their lives and us wanting points for other reasons. I think one game at a time, focus on that, and hopefully we can get past 50 points. It’s a big thing for me and a few of the lads who have been here a long time to achieve that. After that, who knows?’

As for Brunt, he was focused on trying to reach the magic 50 point mark knowing that we’ve never achieved that before in the Premier League.

‘The next target now has to be 50 points. We`ve never done that in the Premier League. Then if we get there, we will reassess. We`ve got a good group of lads who work really hard for each other and everybody knows what they`re doing, so we want to kick on. Last season we got to 40 points by the middle or end of March and the season fizzled out afterwards, so it`s important that we don`t let that happen again.’

With Ben Foster’s performance in the game, Brunt had plenty of praise for him.

‘He`s been really good this season – top drawer. We`re a good team and if somebody makes a mistake there`s always someone there to cover you and if 10 of you aren`t in the right place, we know we can rely on Fozzy. That save he made from the header in the last minute was a great save, though I think the one before that was for show! But the one he made in the last minute was a great save and it`s great knowing you`ve got somebody like that to rely on. You know if you get caught out you`re not always going to be punished because you`ve got a great goalkeeper behind you.’

Having fallen behind to the early penalty, Brunt also praised the goalscorers and the team for fighting back on the day – and joked about the headclash for Craig Dawson.

‘That`s a good thing this year, we`ve got goals from all over the team. I`m sure Daws will be delighted with his goal, because he doesn`t get many from outside the box. It was a pity his game ended a bit early when their defender headed the side of his head, but I`m sure he`ll be OK. It happens to him pretty much once a week in training anyway! He usually clatters somebody in training so ‘what goes around comes around’ was said afterwards in the treatment room! He`s a committed boy. Even in training, he wants to win headers and score goals and if there`s a chance to go and put his head on something he will always do it and sometimes you come off a bit the worse for wear.’

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