The Baggies boss admitted that the midfielders presence had been missed after a 2-0 win at the MKM Stadium

Steve Bruce said that Jake Livermore owed West Brom a man of the match performance after “getting sent off like a pr*ck” in his first game in charge of the club.

Bruce was appointed West Broms new permanent manager at the start of February, three-and-a-half months after being sacked by Newcastle.

The 61-year-old opened his tenure with a 2-0 loss at Sheffield United, during which Livermore was shown a straight red card, but he welcomed the midfielder back into the fold after his four-game suspension against Hull City on Saturday.

Karlan Grant grabbed a brace to seal a 2-0 away win for the Baggies, but it was Livermore who inspired the victory with a superb all-round display in the middle of the park.

Bruce was full of praise for the 32-year-old post-match, but also couldnt resist a dig at him for getting suspended in the first place.

“I have to say the addition of Jake in midfield, alongside the young kid, just did the trick for us. It’s what we’ve missed,”the West Brom boss told reporters.

“His reading of the game, the way he broke things up, he owed us that after getting sent off like a pr*ck, but there you go!

“I can say that about Jake, because he’ll take it the right way!”

After the Sheffield loss, West Brom drew 0-0 with Blackburn before suffering defeats against Luton, Middlesbrough and Swansea.

Bruce finally picked up his first win at the helm against Hull, but the Baggies are still down in 13th place in the Championship.

West Brom are six points adrift of the playoff places having played a game more than sixth-placed Middlesbrough, and will hope to build up some momentum by securing another win when they take on Huddersfield on March 11.

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