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Bilic calls on Baggies to adapt to demands of promotion battle

Sky Bet championship


West Brom head coach Slaven Bilic

West Brom head coach Slaven Bilic

West Brom head coach Slaven Bilic

West Brom boss Slaven Bilic insisted his side must handle the promotion pressure after a 4-2 win over Hull kept the title heat on Leeds.

Charlie Austin, Ahmed Hegazi, Kamil Grosicki and Grady Diangana scored to leave the Baggies a point behind the Sky Bet Championship leaders.

Hegazi was sent off in stoppage time after his second yellow card, but Albion moved closer to ending their two-year Premier League exile.

Kevin Stewart and Mallik Wilks twice levelled for Grant McCann's struggling side, who sit a point above the relegation zone. In contrast, Albion are now five points clear of third-placed Brentford with five games left in the title run-in.

Bilic said: "The teams who are below us - Brentford, Fulham and Forest - are doing well but they are hoping.

"We have to cope with the pressure. We wouldn't swap with them and we have to cope with it. The pressure will only get bigger. It doesn't mean we would swap with them.

"We have to continue being brave and relax in a positive way."

He added: "It was a very frantic match, the stage is frantic. It was a very open game, we didn't want it to be open when they were getting the ball.

"On the ball, we were excellent but they put us under pressure with a very simple way of football. We were a little afraid they were going to hurt us.

"We are back on track and I'm really pleased with that."

Mark Warburton was delighted to see his QPR side all but guarantee their safety with a 1-0 win at relegation-threatened Middlesbrough.

Jordan Hugill's first-half winner took QPR nine points clear of the drop zone with five games remaining and ensured there will be no nervy end to the season at Loftus Road.

Warburton said: "We all know what the Championship is like. I've always said, you win three or four in a row and you can be knocking on the door (for promotion), but then you lose three or four in a row and suddenly you're getting shouts about relegation.

"That's the nature of the Championship and we really wanted that win. We thought we played really well and deserved to get something out of Tuesday's game against Fulham, but we didn't through missing chances and whatever else. But we've come here to a tough venue and got a well-deserved and important three points."

Rhian Brewster and Andre Ayew kept Swansea in the race for a play-off berth with a 2-1 home win over Sheffield Wednesday.

Steve Cooper saw his side take the lead through on-loan Liverpool forward Brewster when he pounced quickest after 52 minutes from Connor Roberts' cross.

The Swans doubled their advantage 14 minutes later when Ayew fired home from the penalty spot after Roberts had been fouled by Adam Reach ahead of Atdhe Nuhiu pulling one back for Garry Monk's team.

Belfast Telegraph