Hughton on 'nice problem' of picking his squad and Baldock and Akpom

Chris Hughton has said he is in a 'nice position' of picking his squad at the moment and that he isn't afraid to rotate his back four.

Wednesday, 5th April 2017, 3:00 pm
Updated Friday, 8th June 2018, 3:41 am
Brighton players celebrate during their 3-1 victory over Birmingham City on Tuesday night. Picture by Phil Westlake

Albion made two changes in defence for Tuesday night's 3-1 win over Birmingham City as both Bruno and Gaetan Bong returning to the full-back positions.

Both Seb Pocognoli and Liam Rosenior made way and were given a rest by Hughton. A third change to the back four was made on the half-hour mark with Lewis Dunk, who had trained through illness the previous day, unable to continue.

That threw into the mix, Fikayo Tomori, who put in an outstanding shift with man of the match Uwe Huenenmeier at centre half.

It's a promising sign that the back-line have such an understanding whoever plays as Tuesday night saw them miss out narrowly on their fourth clean sheet in five matches.

Hughton said: "I have got a motivated group. At the moment it is probably tougher to pick the subs than then team and it's a nice position to be in. It's not normal, but it's a nice position to be in.

"Only because if there were a bigger gap between the games then maybe (I would be worried about making changes), but it's that balance between consistency and tweaking things a little bit.

"When you have got the amount of games we have got in a short period of time, when we have to go again on Friday, when everyone is pushing. I think as we all know it's always that little bit easier when you are on the back of a win."

On Baldock, who has missed the last two games with a glutes problem, and his chance to return for Friday's clash at Queens Park Rangers, Hughton added: "I think at this moment he is touch and go, I would like to think so, but he hasn't trained for the last few days and he will have to train by Thursday to be available."

The Albion boss also revealed that he would have brought on Chuba Akpom in a bid to boost his confidence in Tuesday night's 3-1 win over Birmingham City, had Lewis Dunk not come off ill.

Hughton revealed: "If Dunky had not had not gone off them I would have done, yes. But with Dunky going off it allowed us two substitutions and then I am thinking more of Friday and an opportunity for Anthony, who has played almost every game, and Dale as well to give them a little rest."