Albion manager Gus Poyet is poised to keep faith with “lucky” Lewis Dunk against Bristol City at The Amex tonight.
Adam El-Abd is back in the squad after four matches out with hamstring trouble but Poyet has hinted he will stick with Dunk in the centre of defence.
El-Abd had been ever-present for the Seagulls in the Championship this season until he was injured against Leeds at the start of the month.
Dunk, 21 on Saturday when Albion visit arch-rivals Crystal Palace, has deputised in wins against Peterborough and Huddersfield and draws with Wolves and Bolton.
Poyet said: “He has done enough to make it difficult for me. I also think he has been a bit lucky because he has been involved in games that we practically controlled completely.
“When you control the game so much and you are a defender, you are not defending too many times and that helps you a lot.
“It was a different story for Adam El-Abd at Blackpool, where he had to defend 250 crosses and ten breaks and people coming from everywhere. That was a difficult one for a defender.
“But we cannot pick the players on luck, we pick the players on performances, and Dunky did very well, so it’s going to be difficult.”
See The Argus today for a two-page preview of tonight's clash with Bristol City