At his pre-match press conference, Chris Hughton spoke about dedicating Saturday’s game to Matt Grimstone and Jacob Schilt, delivered the latest team news, assessed the threat posed by Hull City under Steve Bruce and expectations being raised.
Dedicating the game to Matt and Jacob: “It is only right and fitting that the club have done this. I’ve been incredibly impressed by the way that the club and community have come together throughout this period.
“We were at the funeral of Matt on Monday and the turnout from the club and the local community was exceptional. It’s about showing our respects, but also using it as a celebration of Matt’s life.
“I think that’s the way that the family and local community would like to remember it. It’s of course our responsibility on the football pitch to do things right and to make sure we put in a performance that would make Matt and Jacob very proud.
“I feel very proud of the club and what the community have done.”
Team news: “We’ve had a couple of weeks off from games and have used the time very well. We’ve had six internationals away and some were involved more than others, but they’ve all come back fine, so at the moment there are no injuries.
“It’s a very good position to be in and we’re looking forward to the two games coming up on Saturday and Tuesday [v Rotherham].
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Hull City under Steve Bruce: “He’s an exceptional and experienced manager that’s been there and done it. What he’s had to do is regroup again.
“They’ve had the disappointment of last season and for us managers that have been in the game for a while, you know how difficult the Premier League is and the fact that they didn’t quite make it will mean they will be desperate to get back again.
“That comes with the territory and even though I will continue to talk things down, I know that expectations will be raised. But I would rather be in the form that we’re in and have expectations raised than to be at the other end of the table and make things more difficult.
“Most people, and certainly our supporters, would recognise that we’re only five games into a 46-game season. It’s very early doors and some of the teams that you expect to be right up there at the end of the season maybe haven’t hit their best form for whatever reason.
“We know it’s a long, hard season, but I would certainly rather be in the position we’re in now and try to talk it down, than be in a different position or perhaps where we were last season.”