Hughton welcomes selection headache

Albion striker Sam Baldock is expecting a tough match away to Preston in the Championship tomorrow
Albion striker Sam Baldock is expecting a tough match away to Preston in the Championship tomorrow

Albion boss Chris Hughton is welcoming a selection headache as his side enter the crunch period of the season.

The Seagulls sit fourth in the Championship and have a fully-fit squad to choose from, apart from defender Uwe Hunemeier, who is still a few weeks away from returning.

Left-back Gaetan Bong, who has been out since October with a thigh injury, and winger Kazenga LuaLua both featured in a behind-closed-doors friendly with Cardiff City on Tuesday.

Along with midfielder Andrew Crofts, they were not in the 18-man Brighton squad for Monday’s 4-0 win at home to Leeds United.

Hughton is welcoming having so many players available and said: “It certainly causes problems but they’re good problems.

“We’ll need everyone because we went through a big chunk of the season missing players who started the season so well. You know that at some stage you will also pick up some more injuries, it’s just part and parcel of the game.

“But to have as many fit as what we do at this moment is a big plus for us.”

Albion head to Preston tomorrow after back-to-back 4-0 wins, over Bristol City and Leeds respectively.

Striker Sam Baldock is expecting a tough game but admits the Seagulls are going into every game looking to win: “It will be very tough as they’re hard to beat. They took the pace out of the game at our place and they controlled parts of the match.

“They’re going to be hard to score against and they also carry the attacking threat with the players they have but we go in to each game hoping to win and wanting to win.

“You see the standards of people training and think ‘we’re in a good place here’.

“You’re always being pushed and no one’s place is secure. We are such a tight-knit group and everyone wants everyone to achieve for the club.”

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