Date: 9th August 2016 at 2:40pm
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Manager Chris Hughton has been speaking about the appearance of youngster Ben White in the game against Derby, and he’s also previewed the Colchester clash.

18 year old White signed his first professional deal over the summer with the club, and he found himself on the bench for the Championship opener at the iPro Stadium, and speaking to the Official Site Hughton explained.

‘We did have other selection choices, but not many in terms of players that can play at centre half. He`s (White) a young talent and this will do him the world of good, this experience of being around us and the pressure that comes with it. If we have a problem at the back, then he`s coming on. It might be a vital 20, 30 or 45 minutes for him and he`s got to produce. This is a great experience for him.’

With Colchester next up in the League Cup later this evening, he said also.

‘I will make wholesale changes and I think we are in a position to do that, with a game on Friday. We have a competitive squad; the likes of Elvis Manu and Danny Holla weren`t even in the squad on Saturday and they`ve both had a long pre-season.’

In his fuller pre game press conference, he went on to speak about our Under 23 group.

‘We have players that are desperate to get opportunities to improve and test themselves. We always have numbers, including players that are pushing from the under-23s. It`s just important that we get the right balance. For those that do play, it will be a very good challenge for them. Ben White and Sam Adekugbe will be in the squad; it will be a good opportunity to see them and other youngsters will also come into the reckoning. Sam came over before he joined and at that stage we decided not to act, but the opportunity came around again this summer and we thought the timing was good to sign him. He had impressed in his first period with us, and in that position, natural left-footed left-backs are always a commodity. He`s done very well since he`s been here.’

Speaking more about Oliver Norwood, Hughton went on to say.

‘He`s settled in very well. He knew a few of the lads anyway and he`s the sort of character that I wouldn`t expect to take very long to settle in. He certainly knows the division, having only missed a couple of games last season. Ollie has a great awareness of the game, he`s very good on the ball and he uses it very well. Is he different to what we already have? Yes, I think he is and I can see him playing with any of the other three in there. If you`re looking at what we had last season then, of course, it was Beram Kayal and Dale Stephens playing the large majority of the season, but I`d like to think there are many different combinations available now.’

As for Colchester more specifically, he added.

‘It`s a really good challenge for us and it will be a tough game. We experienced that last season in the two games that we played (Southend and Walsall) and we wouldn`t expect anything different this time. It`s a really good opportunity for those who didn`t play at the weekend. It`s a shame that we play Friday night instead of Saturday, as that would have given us a little more recovery time.’

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