Hard work and focus have been the main reasons for the turnaround of fortunes for West Brom defender Pele.
The 30-year old has struggled to become a regular first team contributor since he was signed in 2007 but with injuries and indifferent form within the Baggies camp, a vacancy has opened up and been grabbed with both hands by the former Southampton man.
Such has his hard work been noticed that Tony Mowbray gave him the captain’s armband in the FA Cup fixture against Burnley earlier this week and now that a spot in the team has appeared, Pele has no intentions of not being the one to take it.
“Of course I want to play but I never stopped working or sulked. I told the manager ‘okay, it’s your decision’ but I have worked hard all the time knowing that he may call for me at any time,” Pele said.
“It wasn’t a case of leaving or being upset. It was about working hard and doing what I could to get back into the side. I am an upbeat player. It doesn’t mean I’m happy all the time but sometimes you need to try to show that you’re being positive.
“I know that I need to work hard in training otherwise the manager won’t want to know. I have done my best.”