TOUGH CALL AHEAD FOR THIS ‘FAM­ILY’

The Football League Paper - - GLENN MOORE -

SUC­CESS can be bit­ter­sweet. Glenn Mur­ray and Steve Sid­well have been key fig­ures in Brighton’s pro­mo­tion but now they, and man­ager Chris Hughton, face a de­ci­sion. Sid­well is 34 and in 18 months at Stoke City started five Premier League games be­fore mov­ing to Brighton (ini­tially on loan) early last year. Prior to that he played a full sea­son as Ful­ham were rel­e­gated. Mur­ray will be 34 in Septem­ber. Be­fore be­ing loaned to Brighton this sea­son, he scored three goals in 19 Premier League matches (six starts) for Bournemouth. Prior to that, there were eight goals in 35 top-flight games (14 starts) for Crys­tal Palace. Both are very good Cham­pi­onship play­ers, but the Premier League now ap­pears a step too far. Do they settle for be­ing, at best, an im­pact sub – or seek play­ing time else­where? Nei­ther will be short of of­fers. Does Hughton keep them for their ex­pe­ri­ence – and both are good char­ac­ters – or free up the bud­get and squad places for younger play­ers? There is clearly great ca­ma­raderie at the Amex, but foot­ball can be a harsh game. As the glow of pro­mo­tion wears off, hard choices have to be made.

PIC­TURE: Ac­tion Im­ages

FA­THER FIG­URES: Steve Sid­well shoots and, in­set, Glenn Mur­ray scores from the spot

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