Matt Phillips and Kyle Bartley have signed new contract extensions to continue playing for West Bromwich Albion.
Phillips has scored 23 goals in 172 appearances for the Baggies since joining the club in July 2016 from QPR, and will now remain at West Brom until June 2024 after signing a three-year contract extension.
Manager, Valerien Ismael Ismael provided a hint that he could be set to play a 4-3-3 formation this season as he praised Phillips’ ability to play on either flank or as a number 9 in “a front three” as one of multiple versatile players within the squad.
The ex Barnsley boss also praised Phillips for his reflection skills in terms of development and determination to improve, commenting: “He is very intelligent in terms of reflecting well, and he comes all the time to us for more videos, more information and how to solve problems.
“It shows, simply, his professionalism. This is exactly what we need. The right player, with the right mentality and with quality.
“If you are 18 or 30 it doesn’t matter, as long as you have the right mentality, the right focus and the desire on the pitch. I think that Matt is the perfect example for our way.”
Bartley meanwhile has signed a two-year extension to remain at The Hawthorns until June 2023, having scored seven goals in 105 appearances in all competitions since joining from Swansea City in summer 2018.
Manager, Valerien Ismael is ‘delighted’ to have retained Bartley and has tipped the 30 year-old as a future manager, as he said: “I think Kyle will be a future manager because he’s straight with us, after our first few days together we discussed a lot about tactics and the way we want to play.
“We spoke with him like a staff member, because he understood and tried to reproduce it on the pitch with a voice to give comments to the guys.
“He is a leader. His attitude is unbelievable and he’s very professional. He takes care of the other players and the atmosphere in the changing room.
“For the club, you can’t put a number on the worth of such a player. I’m really looking forward to working with him.”
Both players are set to feature in West Brom’s opening match against Bournemouth on Friday 6 August 2021, as the 2021-22 Championship season gets underway this weekend.