Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 18 September 2014

Hodgson knows value of Odemwingie

Peter Odemwingie

West Brom head coach Roy Hodgson has admitted he may have to fight to hold on to star striker Peter Odemwingie during the summer.

The Nigeria forward has scored 10 goals so far this season, the second most of any player in a bottom-half Premier League team. Hodgson paid tribute to Odemwingie, and was asked if he would have to brace himself for offers for the 29-year-old later in the year.

"Perhaps, but I'll worry about that when the time comes," he said. "Whatever happens after the season finishes I'll concern myself with at that time. Peter's been an excellent signing for the club."

He added: "I knew of him at Fulham, when I was working there he was on our scouting radar.

"We were interested in him, but didn't need a centre forward at the time."

Hodgson believes that no matter how many goals Odemwingie scores this season, he will be judged by how the team performs as a whole.

The manager continued: "He'll be pleased with his season so far, but I hope he's going to agree with me that the only way he can really be satisfied is if he does well for his club and his club stays in the league.

Odemwingie's efforts are even more impressive due to the fact that he had no real rest over the summer, an issue that has led West Brom to manage his training programme carefully.

Hodgson said: "We are aware of the fact that he hasn't had much of a break because he came from the Russian league (which runs from March to November), and has also had the World Cup with Nigeria.

"We do try to tailor his programme between games to make certain that we don't burn him out."

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