West Brom, ‘Patient game’ – Valerien Ismael issues West Brom contract update regarding key man Sam Johnstone

‘Patient game’ – Valerien Ismael issues West Brom contract update regarding key man Sam Johnstone

West Brom boss Valerien Ismael has said the club will step up contract talks with Sam Johnstone in the January transfer window.

Johnstone, 28, has emerged as a key player for West Brom since arriving from Manchester United in the summer of 2018.

The ‘keeper has played 145 times for the Baggies, helping keep 36 clean sheets. He was a standout player in the Premier League last season and has earned international recognition, making three appearances for the England national team.

Unsurprisingly, Johnstone’s form combined with West Brom’s relegation and his contract uncertainty has seen him attract transfer interest from elsewhere.

READ: West Brom confirm temporary departure of defender

However, West Brom aren’t in a rush to address his contract situation, for now.

As quoted by the Express and Star, Baggies boss Valerien Ismael has revealed that the club will go into discussions “more intensively” in January, with the sole focus on performances at the moment.

Here’s what he had to say:

“There’s nothing new. It’s a patient game now, like a chess game. He wants to see.

“For sure, we want to extend. At the minute, I’m not worried, it’s a normal process.

“From January we will start to go more intensively in the discussion but at the moment we’re all focused on the pitch, on the performances.”

West Brom, ‘Patient game’ – Valerien Ismael issues West Brom contract update regarding key man Sam Johnstone

Who has been linked with Johnstone?

As said before, plenty of sides were linked with the West Brom shot-stopper following their relegation to the Premier League.

Links have cropped up recently as well ahead of the January transfer window. Premier League trio Spurs, West Ham and Southampton have all been mentioned as potential destinations (The Sun on Sunday, 10.10.21), so it will be interesting to see if their rumoured pursuits step up in the New Year.

For now, it seems as though the full focus will be on on-pitch matters, as West Brom look to get back on track after three losses and tree wins in their last six Championship games.

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