By Joe Ellis

17th Jun, 2022 | 7:10am

West Brom: Paul Robinson urges Steve Bruce to play Alex Palmer in 22/23

Steve Bruce has potentially three first-team goalkeepers to choose from at West Brom for the 2022-23 season, all of differing experience and age.

David Button played through the end of the previous campaign after Sam Johnstone was frozen out due to not extending his contract at The Hawthorns and he now looks likely to be heading elsewhere.

Despite the England international’s exit though, Bruce still has Alex Palmer, 25, and Josh Griffiths, 20, who could come in and be the Baggies’ number one.

Paul Robinson wants the Albion manager to put his faith in Palmer after he impressed in a one-game emergency loan at Luton Town last season when the Hatters suffered an injury crisis between the sticks.

“The board have got to back him,” Robinson said to the Express and Star. “They have got to give him what he wants. He has to be able to bring in players that suit his style and how he wants to play.

“That is why you bring these managers in – and you have to give them time. “It’s only after they’ve had that time that you can judge whether they are a success. We have to see what happens, the players that come, the players that go.

“I saw Alex Palmer signed a new four-year deal. I really like him as a goalkeeper I think he has got great potential. He did fantastically well at Lincoln. You have to give those players an opportunity to prove themselves.”

It’s time

Button was very good as a stand-in for Johnstone and no one would feel uneasy if he was still the number one for West Brom next season but we need to aim higher than him.

He has only ever been a backup and to suddenly make him the first choice might see cracks appear in his game while Palmer has been the main man out on loan and come through the challenge in flying colours.

Now is the time for the 25-year-old to take over at The Hawthorns otherwise he surely wouldn’t have signed a new four-year deal to stay.

Thankfully for Bruce, he shouldn’t have to scour the transfer market for a new shot-stopper this time around because Palmer is good enough to help guide the Baggies towards a playoff push at least if given the chance.

We can’t afford to hang around the second tier for much longer though and if we start Button on the opening day of the season, then we might have to buckle in for another turbulent campaign.

In other West Brom news, we might have to put aside any local pride if we want to sign this promising attacker from our city rivals in the Premier League.

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