Brighton & Hove Albion defender Gaetan Bong admits he had mixed feelings about the recent international break and is now eager for the side to regain their momentum at the top of the Championship table, with two home games in four days.
He said, “It is fine to have some days to rest and it is also fine when you play every three days and there are a lot of games.
“I prefer to keep going, but you cannot do anything about the international break. We probably needed to rest and have some time to work individually.
“But I like playing games regularly because you don’t have too much time to think about things. It allows you to keep going; because you work hard in one game and then you want the next one to come quickly.”
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The defender highlighted the psychological advantages of sitting top of the table after experiencing a similar situation at Olympiakos and compared it to a relegation battle, which he was involved in at Wigan last season.
“When I was in Greece with Olympiakos, I was playing in a team that was at the top and then for six months at Wigan, I was playing in a team that was fighting to survive.
"You have the same pressure going into a game because you need to win. The only difference [being at the top] is that when you arrive, the team opposite you is perhaps a bit more scared because they see your quality.
“But when you are down near the bottom you have perhaps got a bit more to prove and show that you’re not scared of the team that’s above you.
“It’s all about how you see the game mentally. We can’t just arrive at the stadium and expect to win the game because we are near the top.
“We need to work hard if we want to stay there.”
The 27-year-old has praised the way in which the new signings have gelled into the team and insists they are now all on the same wavelength with the existing players from last season.
“There are a lot of new players here and the team and staff have done well to help us settle.
“Now we need to keep going and we don’t need to be scared because we are playing as a new team. We just need to say that we know what we can do and let’s go and do it.”
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