Brighton & Hove Albion boss Chris Hughton tonight praised his side's performance after they dominated Cardiff City at the Amex to extend their unbeaten run to ten games, but ultimately couldn't convert their possession into maximum points.
The Seagulls were in total control against the Bluebirds, but trailed to Joe Mason's breakaway goal, and Hughton was delighted the character his team showed as they came from a goal down for the first time this season.
He said, "You can't ask any more than to be unbeaten after ten games and top of the division. If you are analysing games and you are trying to be the best that you can, then we can look at the last three draws and say we certainly should have won two of them.
"In my time since I have been here we are certainly getting some points that we perhaps would not have got last season, but I was disappointed that in a game we dominated we did not come out with three points.
"We showed great character when we went a goal down and I didn't see too many Cardiff chances after that. They worked their chance very well, it was early in the game and we needed a response from the team - which we certainly saw.
"What we must do is turn the dominance and possession into opportunities and ultimately goals. We were not able to do that today, but first and foremost you want to be playing to a level that allows you to have opportunities, and we are doing that at the moment."
LATEST NEWS FROM SEAGULLS.CO.UK
- REPORT: ALBION 1 CARDIFF 1
- NO IFS OR BUTTS: THE RED CARD EFFECT
- AMEX TO HOST ENGLAND U21s
- CHICKSEN JOINS ORIENT ON LOAN
- THE MONTH THAT WAS: SEPTEMBER
Hughton singled out goalscorer Dale Stephens and Solly March for praise, and also explained his reasons for restoring Lewis Dunk to the starting line-up.
"Dale was outstanding today. He was box-to-box with great energy levels and it was another good goal for him. I am really pleased for Dale as he had a tough time last season with the injury, which took him a little while to get back from, but he is certainly at the top of his game at the moment.
"My decision to bring Dunky back in was two-fold. He did very well against Kenwyne Jones at Cardiff last season. Also, we have four very good centre-halves and sometimes you have to manoeuvre them around a little bit and change them for certain games and that was my choice today; and I thought that we handled Jones very well.
"Solly came into the game in that first half. He did not start that well but he is a player who has certainly played far more on the right hand side than the left so it took him a little while to get into his stride.
"When you are that type of player and a winger, you are waiting for the game to open up a little bit and what Cardiff did do in the early phases was kept a very tight unit and made it very difficult for him, but I thought that as the game opened up he got better and better."
Meanwhile, for the second week in a row, Hughton was left disappointed by a refereeing decision, and added, "I was unhappy with two decisions in particular. One where Solly March was impeded by the lad Fabio [Da Silva].
"He was already on a booking. It was certainly premeditated, it was quite obvious what he was doing and it was a yellow card so he should have been sent off.
"The second one was that we felt we had a great penalty claim on our first corner. In fact we had two penalty claims. One on Lewis Dunk and one on Tomer Hemed. Tomer was tugged back, so we felt aggrieved with those two decisions but in regards to the performance I could not be happier.”