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Rusk Applauds Professional Display

By Kieran Cleeves • 30 January 2018

Brighton & Hove Albion under-23 coach Simon Rusk praised his team for the professionalism shown in tonight’s impressive 2-0 victory over Newcastle United in the Premier League 2 Division 2.

Goals from Aaron Connolly and Tyler Forbes secured all three points for the Seagulls in the north east, and Rusk was delighted with the balanced display that his players produced against the Magpies.

He said, “It was always going to be a difficult game, but what the lads showed was a great level of professionalism.

“Newcastle were always going to cause us problems, they’re a side that like to play and rotate well. We had to be disciplined without the ball, but we also looked dangerous on the counter-attack.

“When we got into the final third, we were quite effective in the way we played. Overall, credit has to go to the lads for a professional performance and it was a good win away from home.”

Albion climbed to sixth in the league table, just one place outside the play-off positions, and Rusk commented further on their composed performance, which secured their third successive win in all competitions.

“We wanted a good team performance tonight and that includes wingers doing the defensive side of the game, the forward players being able to turn over the ball and work hard for the team.

“On the whole, the commitment levels from the boys were absolutely excellent. It was probably one of the most pleasing things, mixed in with a good degree of discipline.

“Like any team away from home, you’ve got to look dangerous going forward as well, and that’s exactly how we looked for large periods of the game.”

Albion goalkeeper Billy Collings pulled off a string of fine stops to keep Albion’s clean sheet intact, including a brilliant double save in second-half stoppage time, and Rusk praised the 20-year-old for his performance.

“It’s not easy for a goalkeeper to come in when you haven't had a continuous run in the team. He made some really important saves and his handling was also very good - Billy was part of an excellent team performance.”

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