Striking poser for Bruce

Sunderland boss has Bent available

Bent: Fit again

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Steve Bruce has admitted he faces a major selection headache when he names his starting XI for Monday's clash with Everton.

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Star striker Darren Bent is fit again after a hamstring injury which has kept him out of the recent matches with Stoke, Tottenham and Chelsea.

The Black Cats have coped admirably in his absence, recovering well from their 5-1 derby drubbing by Newcastle to defeat Stoke at home, draw at Spurs and then stun champions Chelsea 3-0 at Stamford Bridge.

Record signing Asamoah Gyan has bagged four goals in that spell, while Danny Welbeck opened his account for the season with the final goal against the Blues, leaving Bruce with much to ponder.


He said: "Darren has been fantastic for 18 months. It gives me an awful headache.

"When he was our only recognised striker, the owner (Ellis Short) dug deep and we managed to bring in Asamoah.

"When Darren did get injured, he took up the mantle and he came to the plate just when we needed him. I am delighted with the kid.

"The more good players we have got available, terrific. He will give me a hell of a selection headache, but those are the kind of decisions you enjoy making."


Welbeck's first goal for the club came in his 14th appearance, but Bruce has been delighted with the contribution of a teenager who has played out of position for much of the time since his summer arrival on loan from Manchester United.

He said: "Danny gave his best performance at Chelsea. I don't think I have witnessed a 19-year-old play like that, with such confidence and such poise.

"He was a threat all afternoon and I think what summed up the performance was Danny.

"For the first goal, he made four challenges back in his half. That epitomised what the performance was about."