Bilić pleased with ‘deserved’ win against ‘toughest’ opponents

Slaven Bilić believes his side deserved the three points at The Hawthorns on Saturday but insists Sheffield Wednesday are the “toughest” opponents Albion have faced this season.

Charlie Austin calmly stepped up to fire home an 88th-minute penalty and earn the Baggies their 10th win of the campaign after Steven Fletcher had cancelled out Hal Robson-Kanu’s opener.

And Bilić says Albion, who remain top of the Sky Bet Championship with 36 points from 17 fixtures, were good value for the 2-1 scoreline. 

“I think overall we deserved to win the game, definitely,” he said. “In the first half we played good, they hurt us in the first 10 minutes but we sorted ourselves out.

“They did well to press us and I told the guys before the game ‘they are a team of men’. They roll up their sleeves and go for a fight, with enough quality on the pitch. For me, they are one of the best sides, at least the toughest to play against.

“The second half was like a derby game. It was okay until we conceded the goal. After that, we should have scored from the first attack. They were not all over us but they were dangerous.

“We needed a good reaction from the bench to win the game. Again, the guys who came from the bench did a good job for us. It’s a great win.

“I’m pleased with everything.”

And Bilić couldn’t quite find the words to describe the confidence Austin showed to claim the win late on.

“You have to have, I won’t say the word… to take the penalty. It’s great when your strikers are scoring goals. Well done him.”

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