Shelton set for Baggies deal

West Brom will take up the 12-month option on central defender Shelton Martis’ contract after a series of promising performances since breaking into the first-team squad.

Martis was signed from Hibernian for just £50,000 in the summer of 2007 by Baggies boss Tony Mowbray, who had taken him to Scotland after spotting his potential with Darlington.

He has had to bide his time for a first-team opportunity but impressed on his debut in last month’s goalless draw at West Ham and has remained part of Mowbray’s plans since.

Mowbray said: “Shelton’s contract is nothing that needs to be done urgently but we will pick up the one-year option on the current one.

“He is a young footballer in terms of experience but the signs are there that the penny is dropping. He now understands the maturity needed to play for our team.

“Going from Darlington to Hibernian and then the Premier League down here is a massive jump and he has had to convince himself that he can play at this level.

“But he has all the attributes needed to play in central defence and is composed on the ball, big, strong and fast.

“I saw those attributes at Darlington, that’s why I took him to Hibs. I just felt he needed to develop mentally and the signs are that he is getting there and becoming a tougher player.”

Martis impressed as a second-half substitute during Saturday’s 3-0 home win over Sunderland which gave Albion a glimmer of hope of avoiding relegation.

But Mowbray recognises that, even if West Brom win their last four games, their destiny will be out of their hands unless their rivals slip up.

He said: “We could win all four games and it still won’t matter. We won’t have enough points. It everyone else does their job and wins their games, it won’t matter.

“All we can try and do is win at Tottenham this weekend and then maybe it will throw a few nerves into other teams around us.”

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