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Collective credit for clean sheets – Johnstone

16 November 2019

Sam Johnstone believes any plaudits for keeping clean sheets should be shared around the whole team and not just himself.

The Baggies have claimed three consecutive away shut-outs and four in their last five away from The Hawthorns, with the ever-present Johnstone in between the posts.
 
But the No.1 insists keeping clean sheets is a team effort and outfield players also deserve the plaudits for their defensive shape and determination to keep the opposition at bay.
 
Sam said: “I’m really happy to have contributed to the results away from home in recent weeks but, if I’m honest, it’s been a complete team effort.
 
“It’s so important, not just for goalkeepers, but also for the whole team to be keeping teams out. It goes a long way to securing important results and victories.
 
“It’s one of the best feelings for a goalkeeper. It makes you feel great when you see nil against the name of the team you have played against.
 
“Goalkeepers will always get the most credit when a team keeps a clean sheet because they are the ones who are paid to keep the ball out.
 
“However, if you keep a clean sheet it normally means that the whole team has defended really well and kept a solid shape. So I really do think that it’s a collective achievement.
 
“I’ve got great defenders ahead of me who are always blocking shots and making it difficult for strikers to get opportunities.
 
“The midfielders work really hard and it’s down to the front man to either press or hold a shape so everyone has a part to play.
 
“There have been some games where I haven’t had too much to do in terms of saving shots which shows just how well the whole team is defending.
 
“We’ve been picking up some great results away from home and our confidence is really high as you’d probably expect.
 
“We want to start adding clean sheets at home now as well. We haven’t had one yet and we’re determined to start keeping teams out at The Hawthorns.
 
“We drew our last two games against Charlton and Barnsley so we want to get back to winning ways in front of our own fans.”
 
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