Sanders' debut delight

Academy graduate impressed on his first Albion start against Preston.

By Charlie Hanson • 23 September 2020

By Simon Davies
Max Sanders made his full debut against Preston earlier this season.

Max Sanders was thrilled to make his full debut in the 2-0 win over Preston North End on Wednesday.

Having spent over a decade at the club, the 21-year-old made a substitute appearance against Portsmouth last week, before putting in a strong performance against in Albion’s 2-0 win in the third round of the Carabao Cup.

He said, “I was buzzing to make my full debut at a great stadium - it was a good occasion. I have waited a long time for it and I am pleased that the gaffer put his trust in me and played me. We got the win so I am over the moon.

“I can’t thank the academy enough. I have been here 13 years, and I have finally made my full debut.

By Simon Davies
Sanders in action against Preston.

“I was a little bit nervy at the start, but I started growing into it. I was confident and got on the ball a lot and tried to make things happen. I am a little bit annoyed because I should have had a few more shots but I was happy with how I played, and now we have got Manchester United in the next round.”

Sanders started the game alongside Davy Propper and Pascal Gross, with both his experienced team-mates supporting the debutant.

“Having the senior pros in the team helped me massively,” Sanders added. “Pascal was talking to me, telling me to do little things.

“Pascal, Jason Steele and Davy were really helpful. It felt good to be out there alongside them.”

Three Academy graduates were involved – Sanders and Haydon Roberts started while Alex Cochrane came on in the late stages.

By Simon Davies
Haydon Roberts goes close in the first half to breaking the deadlock against Preston.

“I have played with them all at under-23s level, it shows that if you’re good enough you will get opportunities,” Sanders said.

“Haydon, Viktor and myself are three youngsters from the under-23s. It was a good night for all of us and I really enjoyed it.”