Gera targets mid-table safety
By Juha Pal
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Zoltan Gera is looking for West Brom to establish themselves as a mid-table side.West Brom star Zoltan Gera is looking for the club to build on their remarkable Premiership survival and establish themselves as a mid-table side.
The Baggies avoided the drop to The Championship on the final day of the season, and in the process became the first team to stay up after being bottom of the league at Christmas.
Their impressive end-of-season form under boss Bryan Robson was thanks in no small part to Gera as the Hungarian star grew in stature with a series of influential displays.
In an exclusive interview with skysports.com the 26-year-old revealed that he was looking to improve his all round play as well as helping to steer the Midlands outfit clear of another nail-biting relegation campaign.
"I'd like to be much better," Gera told skysports.com.
"I want to give more assists and score more goals, I want to play a better defensive play.
"I don't want West Brom to fight against relegation, I'd like to be on the middle part of the table.
"I feel good in Birmingham because the fans, my team-mates and my trainers like me and took me in."
Gera, speaking at a Nike press conference in Budapest where he played a game with young hopefuls, also explained that Robson had set him a 16-page pre-season training regime in a bid to maintain his fitness over the coming weeks.
The former Ferencvaros star has been given an extra eight days' leave by The Baggies after his exertions over the last nine months, although he is keen to get back to action with the Premiership outfit.
"There's nothing serious in it [the training plan], I have to run and do some light movements, go to gyms and keep fit or play tennis if I wanted to," Gera continued.
"Before today's game I hadn't seen the ball for quite a long time.
"I'm looking forward to going back to England very much but until then we may go for a shorter vacation with my wife."
However Gera will not be allowed the opportunity to play in a game to recognise one of his country's greats, as the Premiership campaign gets underway just one day before Real Madrid take on a Ferenc Puskas All-star team in honour of the legendary Hungarian striker.
Despite missing out on this showpiece event Gera remains hopeful that he can pick up some tips as his nation take on Copa America and Confederations Cup finalists Argentina on August 17.
"I'd have loved to play against Real but I'll have my own things to do in England - to fight for the success of my team.
"But hopefully I will be there for the Hungary v Argentina friendly because I'd like to learn some tricks from Juan Roman Riquleme."