Albion's manager on his striking options, other results and David Stockdale's form.
Brighton & Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton is pleased to have his attacking options boosted going into the final five games of the season, following Sam Baldock’s recovery from a hamstring injury.
Hughton hailed the partnership of Baldock alongside Tomer Hemed, but stressed that many other factors come into play when selecting his forward players.
He said, “It’s a big plus for us. He [Baldock] has been excellent all season. He may not have given us goals, but he has given us great performances.
“He is a great option and in the last few games, you really can’t afford any more striking injuries.
“They [Baldock and Hemed] have a great record playing together but that doesn’t always affect my thinking.
“I have a decision to make every game and with players coming off the bench and playing well, it can change the team slightly.
“With five games to go I need to determine which team is best to use.”
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The Albion manager hailed the mentality within the squad and says he and the players are taking little notice of their rivals’ results, after Middlesbrough secured a 2-1 victory over Reading late in the game on Tuesday night.
“There is no point in driving yourself mad with other results, you have to focus on yourself and your own job. The moment you lose focus, you get punished.
“We have so many games and meetings afterwards. After Forest they knew we were fortunate to get the win, but there is no doubt that the experience in the group helps us.
“Our young players have blended very well with our more experienced ones and we have a great group here.”
Hughton praised goalkeeper David Stockdale for a number of fine displays throughout the campaign and the influence of goalkeeping coach and former Albion shot-stopper, Ben Roberts.
“He [David] has a great desire to do well and came back in the summer in great shape and highly motivated.
“Ben Roberts has worked really well with the keepers and I have seen David’s confidence grow.
“He plays in a position that is surrounded by mistakes but he doesn’t think about that, which allows him to pull off great saves.”
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