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Oscar: Don't lose focus
Albion head coach Oscar Garcia wants Ashley Barnes to stay focused on his football while the striker sorts out his future with the club.
Barnes is in talks with the Seagulls over a new contract.
He is among several players whose deals expire at the end of the season and has been the subject of speculation in recent weeks linking him with Hull, Norwich and Celtic.
Oscar told The Argus: “Some players are talking (with the club) about their new contract but the important thing for me is they must be focused. The contract is another thing that's not important for me.
“The important thing is how they can play, how focused they are on the pitch.”
Barnes was relegated to the bench for last Saturday's 1-0 win at Birmingham.
He suffered a hip injury when he came on in a collision with goalkeeper Darren Randolph and is doubtful for tomorrow’s clash against Burnley at The Amex but remains part of Oscar's long-term strategy.
“We don’t have a player like him,” Oscar said. “He can play in different positions and offers mobility to our attack. He's a good player."
If Barnes fails to recover then Leo Ulloa will be the only senior recognised striker available, with Craig Mackail-Smith and Will Hoskins both recovering from long-term injuries.
Oscar will be without Andrea Orlandi again for unbeaten Burnley's visit. The Spanish midfielder has been sidelined by a knee injury since the opening day defeat at Leeds.
Burnley have also suffered an injury blow. Ross Wallace needs knee surgery, ruling out the Scottish international winger for months.
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