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Fit-again Bernardo keen to play his part

Bernardo says he is looking forward to making a positive contribution in the second half of the season for Graham Potter's Albion side.

By Bruce Talbot • 10 January 2020

By Paul Hazlewood
Bernardo speaks to the media ahead of Saturday's game with Everton.

The Brazilian defender suffered a freak knee injury in a training-ground collision with Martin Montoya at the beginning of September and wasn’t able to play again until he came on as a substitute in the 1-1 draw against Crystal Palace last month. 

But the 24-year-old has played in three games since and could have a key role over the coming weeks while Dan Burn recovers from a broken collarbone.

He said: “The knee took longer than expected to recover, but I am now 100% fit and I’m looking forward to making some nice memories in the rest of the season.

“It was a weird injury. I clashed knees with Martin and I had to stop training because I felt some pain but, initially, we were not sure what had happened.

“It kept bothering me and when I tried to train, I had massive pain. They discovered a small fracture on the bone, and there was a hole in my cartilage. We took the decision to build up the muscle to protect the knee and that proved to be the right one.

09:13

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Extended interview: Bernardo

“It wasn’t nice - it never is being injured, but it was more difficult because we had a new coach and I wanted to prove myself to him.

“When the team is doing well you want to be involved and when you’re not you don’t feel part of the team’s success and that is not easy for any player.”

02:11

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Highlights: Albion 3 Everton 2

Albion head to Goodison Park on Saturday to face Everton, where Bernardo could come up against fellow Brazilian Richarlison, who has scored nine goals for the Toffees this season.

“Personally, I am a big admirer of his,” said Bernardo. “He has come from nowhere to become Brazil’s main striker. He proved himself at Watford and has made another upward step in his career with the move to Everton. He is a guy I admire a lot and I’m looking forward to playing against him.

“It’s going to be a difficult match but we have a chance of getting something there because we are a good team.

“I saw that their fans were frustrated after the FA Cup defeat at Liverpool, but they have top players who are used to the pressure of wearing the Everton shirt. I don’t think that result will affect them, we won’t have an advantage because of what happened to them in the cup.”

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