Jurgen Locadia starts Brighton FA Cup game against Coventry, says Chris Hughton
By Matthew Treadwell
Last Updated: 15/02/18 3:25pm
Brighton manager Chris Hughton has confirmed club-record signing Jurgen Locadia is fit to make his debut against Coventry in the FA Cup on Saturday.
The £14.1m signing from PSV Eindhoven has been struggling with a slight hamstring strain since joining in January but Hughton confirmed he will start against the Sky Blues in the fifth-round tie at the Amex Stadium.
"He has trained well over the last week and a half and he is fit and available," said Hughton.
"It will be good [for him] to get that first game under his belt and improve his fitness levels.
"We have got really good options in the forward areas. Anyone who comes in has got to work hard for the team and be a team player.
"He is a player that has scored goals this season [nine in 15 appearances for PSV] - that is why we have brought him in - and hopefully that will continue here.
"He will play and start, he is fully clear from the injury. This will give him the chance to work on his fitness levels and give him the chance to integrate into the team in a game, as opposed to in training."
Hughton hopes Locadia can offer something different to the team than the likes of Glenn Murray and Leonardo Ulloa.
"We brought him in because he has been in good form this season. He is a player that will run behind [opposition] defences," added Hughton.
"He is a different type of player and one that likes to get shots off, both right foot and left foot.
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"He has a little bit of flexibility in his play. He can [play] up front but also in a 4-3-3 in either one of the wider attacking positions."
Hughton welcomed the opportunity to give some of his fringe players a run-out in the cup before their attention returns to Premier League survival.
The Seagulls face Swansea at home on February 24 before Arsenal come to the Amex on March 4 - live on Sky Sports.
"[The FA Cup has] been good with regard to using the squad because we have got a lot of numbers," said Hughton.
"It means the players who have not played so many league games are up to speed fitness-wise and makes them feel part of that group and that they are contributing.
"We want to go into that Swansea game in good form having not picked up any injuries.
"It's going to be tight for a group of teams going into the last 11 games. We have to make sure we are in with that group of teams."
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