Goldson pushes first-team claims with impressive Premier League bow
Connor Goldson has given manager Chris Hughton some food for thought after he seamlessly slipped into Brighton's defence on his Premier League debut.
Centre-back Goldson, who underwent heart surgery in March after a problem was discovered during a routine screening, was given a rare opportunity in Albion's 1-0 Premier League win over Watford due to a one-match suspension for Shane Duffy.
He coped competently with the Hornets' attack, playing the full 90 minutes and being named man of the man on the public address system.
Seagulls manager Hughton must now decide whether to stick with the the 25-year-old former Shrewsbury player - who has also made two appearances in the Carabao Cup this season - or recall Republic of Ireland international Duffy for the Boxing Day clash with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.
"It's a happy changing room in there for Connor because he's a very popular player here, we all know what he went through last year but that's a while ago now and we're really delighted that our medical staff and our screening situation that we have here picked it up," Hughton said.
"The difficulty he has had is he's had Lewis Dunk and Shane Duffy in front of him that have both been really excellent for us.
"You have to wait for your chance, I thought he was very good.
"Everybody is really delighted for him and he's deserved it because of the hard work he's put in."
Saturday's narrow success at the Amex Stadium brought to an end a seven-match winless streak for Albion.
Hughton acknowledges it will be a tough task to make it back-to-back victories when they visit the champions.
"We go to Chelsea knowing in most people's minds it is difficult to get a result there.
"There aren't too many who will expect that but that's the challenge and for this club and these players these are the challenges we have been looking forward to the most.
"In the other big games, apart from Liverpool (a 5-1 loss), we have been in the games."