Brighton boss Roberto De Zerbi feels he needs to bring in a new player after young attacker Julio Enciso suffered a long-term injury.
The 19-year-old Paraguay international came off in last weekend’s 4-1 win at Wolves which kept the Seagulls ahead of Manchester City at the top of the Premier League and De Zerbi has confirmed he has sustained a meniscus cartilage injury.
“We will be without Julio for a long period. It can happen in football, but I am sorry for him because he was playing really well, it is a shame for him,” he told his pre-match press conference.
“Before the injury of Julio, my focus has been on other attackers. Especially now, without Julio, I think we need another player.
“We are in a very good condition apart from that. There is a good atmosphere, we would like to finish Saturday evening at the top of the table with nine points.”
On a more positive note De Zerbi also confirmed that, after two substitute appearances, striker Evan Ferguson would start at home to West Ham on Saturday.
De Zerbi was high in praise of Enciso after his performance at Wolves last weekend and is right to be gutted by his injury.
De Zerbi, whose side sit top after back-to-back 4-1 wins, said: “I think Julio today was one of the best players on the pitch, maybe the best.
“I’m really pleased for the performance, the result. We played very well. I’m really pleased because I changed three players and we’ve started the Premier League very well.”
The Italian was also full of praise for Scotland midfielder Billy Gilmour, saying: “In midfield today we played Pascal Gross and (Billy) Gilmour.
“(Summer signing Mahmoud) Dahoud is a top player, but in the last year he’s only played nine games and he needs more time.
“Billy is a smart player. Incredible attitude and incredible behaviour. He plays like an old player, but he’s young and he’s improving a lot.
“In the beginning in my time at Brighton, now he’s a completely different player.”
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