Sami Hyypiä faces his first genuine selection headache since joining Brighton and Hove Albion.
Sami Hyypiä faces his first genuine selection headache since joining Brighton and Hove Albion after the Seagulls added two new strikers to their squad.
Adrian Colunga, who arrived from Spanish club Getafe, signed in time to play a starring role in Brighton’s 4-2 Capital One Cup win at Swindon Town. The 29-year-old, who joined for an undisclosed fee, scored a goal, won one of two penalties converted by Jake Forster- Caskey, and set up Rohan Ince’s stunning opener.
That performance, however, did not stop the Seagulls from splashing out an estimated £2 million on Sam Baldock after his former club Bristol City finally admitted defeat in their efforts to hold onto their chief goal- grabber.
Having already added Chris O’Grady to his squad earlier in the summer, Hyypiä must now decide which of his four senior strikers to start with when the Albion welcome Charlton Athletic to the Amex tomorrow (Saturday).
Craig Mackail-Smith, fresh from an impressive goal-scoring turn last weekend in the win over Bolton Wanderers, will surely expect to start, meaning Baldock could have to temporarily make- do with a place on the bench.
Whoever the Finn picks, the Albion’s attacking options look far healthier than when the season got underway with the Seagulls having sold talismanic striker Leo Ulloa to Leicester City for a club record fee.
Charlton Athletic, though, have their own attacking menaces intent on taking tomorrow’s match by the scruff of the neck.
The Addicks have undergone a spell of rapid transformation since appointing Bob Peeters as manager.
Star of the show so far has been Angolan striker Igor Vetokele. The hitman has managed three goals and a single assist in the league this campaign and has shown signs of fulfilling the potential he displayed as a young player at FC Copenhagen.
He should certainly pose more of a threat to the Albion’s back four than either the Leeds United or Bolton attacks, both of whom were comfortably shackled by the Seagulls back line.
In defence Lewis Dunk should continue alongside Gordon Greer after the pair showed further signs of a blossoming partnership last Saturday at the Amex. Greer particularly has been in superb form this season and his experience looks like teasing the best out of Dunk.
Inigo Calderon has played well while Bruno has been used to fill in midfield gaps but the return of Crofts coupled with the loan signing of Gary Gardner could allow Bruno to revert back to full back.
Likely starting XI: Stockdale, Bruno, Greer, Dunk, Bennett, Holla, Forster-Caskey, Teixeira, Crofts, Mackail-Smith, Colunga.
Likely subs: Ankergren, Calderon, Hughes, Ince, McCourt, Gardner, Baldock.