sport

No Gera fear for Baggies boss

West Brom head coach Steve Clarke expects believes Zoltan Gera has the mental strength to overcome his latest injury setback.

Hungarian international Gera was sidelined for the final six months of last season with knee ligament damage and suffered a similar blow against QPR in the weekend FA Cup tie.

He has been ruled out for the remainder of this season but Clarke has backed him to recover.

The Baggies boss said: "It is terrible luck but Zoltan is a realist, a professional. He has been in the game a long time and understands it's part and parcel of the game.

"I'm not saying it's not a serious injury but people have shown they can come back from cruciate ligament injuries and can recover.

"There are a number of players playing who have damaged the same knee twice and still come back and played.

"I don't think it holds any fears for Zoltan and that is the most important thing.

"Zoltan is a very positive person and he is looking forward to pre-season training already.

"I spoke to him this morning and he is in a good place for someone who has got such a bad injury. I would expect him to be fit enough to join in pre-season training."

Clarke insists it is too early to speculate about Gera's future with the player out of contract in the summer but Albion have a 12-month option they can take up.

He said: "Extensions and contracts are secondary at the moment.

"The most important thing at the moment is that the player gets fit and that's what we are all going to focus on first."