Premier League

Brunt offers Carson backing

Baggies captain praises keeper's potential despite doubts over future

Carson: Has the backing of captain Chris Brunt after a mixed season at West Brom

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Chris Brunt has offered his backing to team-mate Scott Carson amid speculation West Bromwich Albion boss Roy Hodgson is chasing a new goalkeeper.

Carson, 25, had a mixed season with the Baggies, starting the 2010/11 campaign as captain under Roberto Di Matteo.

A number of shaky displays and costly errors saw him lose the armband and his place between the sticks to Boaz Myhill.

But towards the end of the season he got back in favour under Hodgson and had a strong finish to the campaign.

Carson is currently with England preparing for Saturday's Euro 2012 qualifier against Switzerland at Wembley - but he can not have failed to notice that Albion have been linked with a number of goalkeepers, most notably Aston Villa veteran Brad Friedel and Manchester United's ex-Baggie Tomasz Kuszczak.

Kuszczak, in particular, admits he is open to a return to The Hawthorns, while Friedel is also reportedly wanted by Liverpool and Tottenham.

But Albion skipper Brunt has given a ringing endorsement of Carson, saying he has bags of potential.

"Scott's done well for us again this season," Brunt told the Express & Star. "He came in for some stick around Christmas time but since then he has done very well.

"Scott is still only 25 and, potentially, he is as good as any goalkeeper I've played with or seen."