Glenn Hoddle was waxing lyrical about Sam Johnstone on Saturday night when the West Brom goalkeeper impressed against Manchester United.

Although the Baggies lost 1-0 in controversial circumstances, Johnstone starred on his return to Old Trafford by making a number of big saves throughout the match.

According to stats by WyScout, the ex-Red Devils goalkeeper made six saves, using his reflexes for four of them.

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He also saved a Bruno Fernandes penalty but the penalty was ordered to be retaken by controversial referee David Coote as the Albion shot-stopper stepped off his line.

Johnstone was easily West Brom’s man of the match on Saturday and after a save in the first half from Anthony Martial, Hoddle was singing the praises of the 27-year-old.

“What a save that was, it really was top-notch,” said Hoddle on BT Sport 1.

“It was a lovely move from United, you’ve got to say. It’s a lovely pass in, a lovely set-up ball but what a save.

“From that close in, it was an incredible save. He’s read it, he’s gone early.”

Hoddle added: “That’s a really good hand. Good reactions.

“It looks easy in slow-motion. But, wow. What is he? Seven or eight yards out? It’s a fabulous save. That’s twice now he’s made good saves.”

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Johnstone was widely criticised by West Brom fans in the Championship but since winning promotion to the Premier League, it is hard to argue that anyone has done better for the Baggies than the ex-Aston Villa goalkeeper.

Although the Baggies have conceded more goals than any other team in the Premier League this season [18], Johnstone has made the second-most saves in the top-flight [42].

Stats by WyScout show that Johnstone has prevented 3.09 goals in the opening nine Premier League games, which also ranks him second in the top-flight.

It has been a tough start to the season for Albion but it would have been a lot worse if they didn’t have Johnstone putting in Ben Foster-level performances in the majority of his appearances this term.

In other West Brom news, this Albion player was torn to shreds for his international performance last week.

Be sure to follow West Brom News on Facebook and Twitter for 24/7 updates on the Baggies and more exclusive interviews with Kevin Phillips.

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