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How It Stands: Under-23s

By Kieran Cleeves • 20 March 2018

It’s March and the international break is upon us, which means the season’s conclusion isn’t too far away - so here’s a recap of the campaign so far, and what lies ahead for Brighton & Hove Albion’s under-23s.

Simon Rusk’s team are fighting for silverware on three fronts, as they look to gain promotion to Premier League 2 Division 1, while also competing to win the Premier League Cup and Parafix Sussex Senior Cup.

The Seagulls find themselves in third position in the league table, and Rusk’s side have just three matches remaining to secure their place in the play-offs, or make an unlikely charge for top spot.

A stunning 3-0 win against Everton sealed Albion’s place in the last eight of the Premier League Cup at the weekend, following a 6-0 victory over Pagham that booked another Sussex Senior Cup final against Crawley Town.

The season began with back-to-back victories over Norwich City and Fulham, but Rusk’s side were soon brought back down to earth, as West Bromwich Albion inflicted a 5-1 defeat on the Seagulls at the Hawthorns.

Albion returned to winning ways at the end of September, and it was nothing short of emphatic, as braces from Max Sanders and Steven Alzate, and a late goal from James Tilley, secured a 5-0 win at Sunderland.

A series of draws prevented the Seagulls from making any real headway in their challenge to climb up the league table, but a breathtaking second-half turnaround saw Albion come back from two goals down to win 3-2 against Stoke City at the bet365 Stadium.

A last-gasp 2-1 defeat came against Reading at the start of January, but Rusk’s side have reacted in sensational fashion since, stringing together a run of 11 matches without defeat.

In that run, the Seagulls have scored 30 goals, kept seven clean sheets and conceded just four times - and Rusk’s team are brimming with confidence as they head into the business end of the season.

Albion have won three consecutive away league matches without conceding a goal, and have scored three or more goals in seven of those 11 unbeaten matches.

But there’s no room for Rusk’s team to dwell on their recent success, as they head into the final part of the campaign, looking to achieve success in both league and cup competitions.

West Brom and Stoke visit the Stadium in April, before Albion’s league schedule draws to a close against Wolverhampton Wanderers at Molineux on Monday 23rd April.

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