'Immense', 'A tank' – Some West Brom fans think they have found a new Hawthorns hero
Slaven Bilic admitted that a draw was a fair result as West Brom and Burnley played out the Premier League’s only 0-0 draw so far.
It meant there was no goal for new striker Karlan Grant on his debut, but he impressed along with Branislav Ivanovic and Conor Gallagher as Bilic introduced the summer’s new blood into his side.
And it was Ivanovic who stood out for us. He was brilliant on the ball but it’s what he did off it that shows why Bilic wanted to sign the veteran defender.
From the start, he was barking out orders and organising the backline and he played a huge part in helping West Brom record their first clean sheet of the campaign.
He rolled back the years at The Hawthorns on Monday evening, earning a solid 7.5 rating from WhoScored – the second-highest on the pitch for the Baggies.
It’s taken time for Bilic to get him up to speed but we’re expecting him to be a regular in the West Brom backline now – as long as he can stay fit.
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The 36-year-old played the full 90 minutes on Monday evening and it bodes really well for the side ahead of the next game.
And Ivanovic, along with the rest of the Baggies, now have a full week to recover ahead of the next game against Brighton on Monday.
Here is a selection of reactions from happy Baggies fans to their new ‘tank’ at the back…
Not enough up top to break a resolute & physically imposing Burnley down. Definitely a step in the right direction at the back & in midfield. Ivanović impressed but Pereira disappointed. Lost count how many fouls were commited on Grady. #WBA
— TheJackal (@Jackalbion) October 20, 2020
How good was Ivanovic in the centre for us today, can’t buy experience, can’t help but feel 2 points dropped #wba
— Kirk Bennett (@KirkBennett13) October 19, 2020
I’ll take that point.. always better not to lose that one.. try and build and take the positives.. Ivanovic superb.. Gallagher linked up well, allowing Jake to play in a better roll.. Johnstone did great.. final balls were off and quicker passing in final 3rd #wba
— Lee Armstrong (@UncleSock) October 19, 2020
Branislav ivanovic is definitely still a top top player 👏 brilliant today #wba
— coxy (@joecox1999) October 19, 2020
Ivanovic is a tank, Krov will be important for us this year Pereira and Diang look bang average Johnstone is shutting up the haters and Gallagher looked good!! #WBA
— aiden tibbs (@TibbsAiden) October 19, 2020
If Corrie isn’t just slightly more interesting than the game tonight, I won’t be happy 😂 However there are some positives from tonight and I’ll happily take a point and clean sheet. Ivanovic MOTM followed by Hegazi tbh. #wba
— Owen (@itzzzo_) October 19, 2020
Ivanovic & Gallagher our best players I think… they will be important moving forward #wba
— hannah 🏳️🌈 (@Hannanar) October 19, 2020
– Ivanovic looked super
– Gallagher v good
– Clean sheet
– Too nice going forward
– Too slow
– Didn’t win #wba
— Jake (@jakedf96) October 19, 2020
Ivanovic MOTM for me.
Dealt with everything that came his way superbly and could of had a goal. Showed his class.
Not the best of games (!) but a clean sheet and another point on the board.
— Claire Wheeler (@astle1968) October 19, 2020
In other West Brom news, Nigel Quashie was delighted with this ‘aggressive’ WBA selection