• Centre backs in reserve?

    With both of the Albion's first choice centre backs currently on 4 bookings, just one away from a ban, thought must be given to the cover available, should one or in the worst case, both, have to sit out a game.

    Of course first in line is Aaron Hughes, himself unfortunate to have played few games this season - kept out only by the outstanding form of Dunk and Greer. The fact the Seagulls have a player fresh from clocking up his 92nd and 93rd international appearances, sat on their bench is quite something.

    Beyond these three senior players, however, what depth is available? Within the current first team, very little - Inigo Calderon's occassional emergency appearances in the centre have been unconvincing, and Rohan Ince's days as a potential centre half appear over - his propensity for clumsy tackling too risky at the back.

    So any back up would need to come from the development squad, where the centre backs number Glen Rea, Danny Pappoe and Tom Dallinson.

    20 year old Glen Rea is the captain of the side - a local lad who has come through the Albion junior ranks after joining the club from Hove Rivervale at the age of 10. Highly rated by those fans who regularly watch U21 matches, Rea has long been considered the next centre back off the belt that has produced the likes of Virgo, El Abd, Cook, Elphick and Lewis Dunk.

    Glen Rea is a bit of a YouTube star

    Ghanain Danny Pappoe, also 20, was signed by the club in August after being released from Chelsea's academy. At 6'3" Pappoe is an imposing figure, with a reputation for on field discipline issues. He made his only two senior appearances, during a short term loan to Colchester last season. He was red carded in one of them.

    The final option is highly rated 18 year old Tom Dallinson, signed from Arsenal, in late 2013. Dagenham-born Dallinson started out in West Ham's youth system but was snapped up by Arsenal in time to start his scholarship; unfortunately his first year was severely disrupted by injury and he only played seven youth matches for the Gunners. With limited opportunity to show Arsenal what he could do, he was allowed to leave - he is believed to have had plenty of options, but chose the Albion, due to the club's reputation for bringing through young players into the first team.

    At the time of his signing David Burke announced "We are absolutely delighted that Tom has chosen Brighton as the next stage of his football development"

    "The long-term strategy of bringing in players of different ages, in areas we need, is something the recruitment department have been set, and this is another example of a talented player who, for whatever reason, hasn't been able to find a pathway with one of the Premier League's top four or five clubs.

    "However, he has seen that pathway here at Brighton and he only needs to look at players like Rohan Ince, Solly March, George Barker, Jake Forster Caskey and Lewis Dunk, to see that players will get the chance to play and train alongside our first team on a regular basis helps progression."

    Dallinson: next in line?

    As the possibility of a temporary centre back crisis looms, circumstance might have smiled on Dallinson - in the u21s most recent fixture, away to Newcastle United on Monday, both Rea (for a deliberate handball on the goal line) and Pappoe (for violent conduct - off the ball) were shown straight reds, leaving the ex-Arsenal youngster as the only one of the three currently available for selection.

    Related discussion: Greer and Dunk on four bookings

    Comments 4 Comments
    1. Goldstone1976's Avatar
      Goldstone1976 -
      Nice article - thanks.

      I'd be inclined to go with Ince in the (hopefully) unlikely event that Greer and Dunk are both suspended. Yes, Ince's tackles can be clumsy, but we're only talking one game. He'd have to try spectacularly hard to get red carded in just one game, shirley?
    1. hans kraay fan club's Avatar
      hans kraay fan club -
      The issue would more be the number of dangerous free kicks (or worse) that he might give away.
    1. Goldstone1976's Avatar
      Goldstone1976 -
      Quote Originally Posted by hans kraay fan club View Post
      The issue would more be the number of dangerous free kicks (or worse) that he might give away.
      Yep, true. Still, a better bet than a complete unknown from the development squad, no?
    1. mattislost's Avatar
      mattislost -
      Quote Originally Posted by hans kraay fan club View Post
      The issue would more be the number of dangerous free kicks (or worse) that he might give away.
      and the fact that he is awful in the air for a big fella!
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