Get involved: Send your news, views, pictures and video by texting SUPIC to 80360 or email us.
Albion keen to make a fast start against Hull
ALBION boss Gus Poyet has warned Hull they face a speed test now that two of his fastest players are back in contention.
Kazenga LuaLua and Craig Mackail-Smith have both recovered from pre-season injuries for the opening Championship fixture of the season at the KC Stadium tomorrow.
LuaLua missed Tuesday’s 3-0 exit from the Capital One Cup at Swindon with hamstring tightness which has troubled him since the friendly at Worthing at the start of August.
Mackail-Smith has been struggling to shrug off a lower back problem since the friendly at Lewes in mid-July.
Will Buckley, another of Albion’s speed merchants, is also on the brink of returning from a hamstring injury but is unlikely to be risked, with Tuesday’s home game against Cardiff in mind.
Poyet is relieved to have his quick men back after Tuesday’s lacklustre performance.
He told The Argus: “Unfortunately we have missed two or three of the players that are the quickest ones at the club.
“It makes you play differently when you have them, because it’s another option. With them in the squad or in the team the opposition have a different problem to deal with, so I’m pleased that they are back.”
Albion have been treating LuaLua with kid gloves because of the winger’s explosive style of play.
Poyet said: “He didn’t pull the hamstring or the muscle, it was just tight. He has been very close to playing but at the same time still feeling something, so he’s a player that you don’t risk because of his power and the way he plays.
“If it was for a final, one game at the end of the season, it might have been different but we are trying to keep Kaz fitter for the whole season.”