BEN Foster admits he will have a battle on his hands to reclaim the starting jersey from Boaz Myhill – should the Wales international maintain his excellent form between the sticks.
Myhill impressed during back-to-back victories over Sunderland and champions Manchester United, before further enhancing his reputation in Sunday’s 1-1 draw with Arsenal.
And Foster, who is halfway through what is expected to be a 12-week absence with a fractured foot, heaped praise on fellow-stopper Myhill.
“He’s been really good,” said Foster.
“I’ve said it before but I knew he’d be fine.
“I get to see him day in and day out in training so it’s no surprise to me.
“He’s an international goalkeeper and you’ve got no worries with him.
“We’ve needed him as well.
“There have been times in the last couple of games where he’s made saves and if the opposition had scored they would have been completely different games.
“Everybody has been delighted with him and rightly so.
“I’ve watched every game while I’ve been injured and I’ve been very impressed by him.
“It’s the way football is, that if someone has the misfortune of being injured, then it’s always going to be good fortune for someone else.
“It’s up to that person to take the chance.
“You have to take the opportunity with both hands and Boaz is doing really well at the moment.”
And Foster insists Albion’s recent form has lifted his spirits during what has otherwise been a frustrating period.
“There aren’t many teams that go to Old Trafford and put Manchester United on the back foot," he added.
“Teams almost accept their fate that they’re going to lose.
“We just kept going, kept probing, and fully deserved the win.
“As I have a stress fracture in my right foot, I know I can’t be out there doing it with them.
“They’re all my mates so I’m more than happy to sit and watch and cheer them.
“I’ve enjoyed it because we’ve been playing such good football.
“It makes it a lot easier to watch when we’re doing well.
“Some of the signings we made during the transfer window were great and there’s a really good feel about the place at the minute.
“Any game we go into, whether it be United or Arsenal, we hold no fear.
“We don’t fear anyone and we know that we can go and beat anyone on our day.”
The England international keeper, who underwent an operation on his right foot six weeks ago today, is pleased by his progress.
“It was always going to take up to 12 weeks," he said.
“It’s going well and I’ve just started to put weight on it.
“I have been limited in what I can do in the gym since the operation but things should start to pick up again now.”