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Hughton Pleased To Provide Open Training Session

By Kieran Cleeves • 14 August 2018

Brighton & Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton was delighted to provide a number of young supporters with an enjoyable day at the Amex Stadium, as the club’s first team squad put on an open training session yesterday.

Around 2,000 Albion supporters watched the Seagulls train ahead of Sunday’s game against Manchester United on the south coast, and Hughton was pleased to put the players through their paces in front of the club’s younger fanbase.

He said, “It’s always an important day in the club’s calendar, but it’s also an important day for the players. The fact that we can do it early in the season is good, because the kids are on their school holidays.

“It’s exciting for them, as it’s an opportunity to get close to the players. They don’t often get that opportunity during the season.

“I’ve been here three-and-a-half years now, and the club has done a lot of work for the community, which probably stems from the troubles the club had in previous years.

“If I look at where the club is now, compared to some ten years ago, I think it’s a big reason behind why the club has such a close-knit relationship with the community.”

Hughton commented further on the support his team receive from the club’s devoted supporters, and believes it was a key factor in last season’s impressive home form.

“The fanbase has got bigger during my period at the club. It’s been important for us - especially last season, where we got the majority of our points at home.

“That shows how important the fans are that come into the stadium, and also the noise they make. The enthusiasm they have is vitally important for us.

“It’s really important to engage the young community here, because not all the supporters will have an opportunity to come and watch the games.

“Any opportunity we have to involve them, such as days like this, it’s vitally important.”

The Seagulls opened the season with a disappointing 2-0 defeat at Watford on Saturday, and Hughton admitted his side have a daunting start, but challenged his players to provide a positive reaction.

“We were happy overall with what we achieved last season. We didn’t get off to a good start on Saturday and fell below the standards that are needed to get results in this division.

“We’ve got a difficult start. All due respect to Watford on Saturday, but these games coming up [such as Manchester United] are the tougher games on paper.

“If I’m looking at the next six games, we’re playing against four of the top six. This will be a testing time for us.

“Certainly after a defeat on Saturday, it would be wonderful for the team to bounce back with a performance against a top team.”

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