Stephens solely focused on achieving promotion

Dale Stephens. Picture by Phil Westlake (PW Sporting Photography)

Dale Stephens. Picture by Phil Westlake (PW Sporting Photography)

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Dale Stephens has put thoughts about his future to the back of his mind as he looks to seal automatic promotion with Albion.

The 27-year-old midfielder, who had a transfer request turned down last summer as he sought a Premier League move, is out of contract at the end of the season.

He insists it is not a distraction and talking about his future said: “It will be decided when everything is all said and done.

“There will be a conversation over the summer at some point but I’m solely focused on what’s happening between now and the end of the season.

“I think the most important thing is we do the job first before any conversation takes place and I’m fully focused on that.

“We’ve got two very tough away games coming up and we’ll have to show something else in our armoury to go out and get six points.”

Stephens has had speculation surrounding his future before and said: “It’s something I’ve had throughout my career, not just being out of contract but transfers may have happened, may not have happened, and it’s something I’ve dealt with.

“I’ve had it a couple of times, so it’s something I’m used to. I accepted what happened and I’m still excited about being at this football club and the position we’re in.”

Stephens was sent off when Albion drew at Middlesbrough and missed out on promotion on the final day of last season and said: “It leaves a bitter taste, even now. To do it (go up) this season on the back of what happened would be special.

“It would be the biggest thing in my career and a lot of players are in the same situation but it’s important we don’t get carried away.

“We’re in a good position, have done well so far but there’s a bit of work to be done and we’re looking forward to it.”

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