Fitzwater looking forward to Stoke PL2 test

Jack Fitzwater says Albion’s PL2 team will play with a positive mindset against Stoke City as they look to clock up a fifth consecutive win on the road at Harrison Park on Friday night (ko 7pm).

Having captained Albion to league wins against Newcastle United, Norwich City and Swansea City as well as a Premier League Cup win against Scunthorpe United, the Throstles sit in fifth place in the Premier League 2 Division Two, having won five and lost three of their eight league games.

And Jack is confident the upbeat Baggies will play to win all three points against Stoke.

“We’re going to go in to win the game against Stoke," said Jack.

"We are going in full of confidence. I think there will be a few changes on Friday night but we are going to go there with the mindset to win the game.

“We are always looking at the league. We want to push ourselves, but we are going to take it one step at a time and see where we are Friday. We’ll go in to the game wanting to win the game - and hopefully we will - and we’ll see where we can go from there.

“Against Swansea there were a few dubious offsides in the first half, but we played really well. In the first 20 minutes I think we had 10 shots on target. The first-team players that dropped down all applied themselves well and we thoroughly deserved the three points.

“I don’t think Swansea had a shot on target. They only got in to our final third three or four times and didn’t really threaten us. We knew if we kept breaking them down they would get tired. A few of their lads were cramping up so we just had to keep moving the ball and not make mistakes and we knew the goals would come if we kept moving it quickly."

And the opportunity to work under Slaven Bilić's leadership and alongside players such as Ahmed Hegazi is something that Fitzwater is savouring every moment of.

“We can learn loads from Slaven," Jack added.

"The main thing from him is he wants us to play with a smile on our faces. We are going into training and wanting to improve. Everyone is smiling - it’s a great feeling at the club at the moment. 

"From the first day Slaven came in for pre-season he taught us some things that are completely different to how we have been taught by a lot of the managers who have been here before, so it is a bit of an adjusting period but everyone is willing to improve under him and I think we have.

“Every day in training you learn new things from Hegazi, he is always talking. You can tell on the pitch through his passing and the way that he uses his body against their players, he makes it look so easy. You pick up little things which you want to do and you take them from first-team players."

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