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MAENPAA'S SEIZED OPPORTUNITY

17 August 2016

Albion's shot-stopper reflected on his league debut.


Niki Maenpaa was thrilled to make his Brighton & Hove Albion league debut in the 3-0 victory over Rotherham United at the Amex last night.

The 31-year-old started for the Seagulls in place of David Stockdale, who suffered an injury against Nottingham Forest, and was pleased to be given his chance between the goalposts.

He said, “I was delighted [to make league debut], but the result was the most important thing.

“I want to play; I have to be honest. I’ve been waiting and unfortunately Stocko [David Stockdale] got injured last Friday and I’ve got my chance now."

The Finland international made a few vital saves to keep Albion’s clean sheet record intact and praised his team-mates for their focus and solidarity in defence.

“It’s really good [clean sheet record]. It tells you something about the team; we are really hard to beat and really hard to score against. It’s all about team work and we’ve been able to show that so far.

“The last 15-20 minutes wasn’t so good from our side, but I thought we managed to win the game well and the clean sheet was also fantastic.”

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Maenpaa’s last appearance for the Seagulls came in the 1-0 FA Cup defeat against Hull City in January.

Despite the strong competition between the sticks, Maenpaa complimented his fellow goalkeepers at the club and praised the friendly environment they create amongst themselves.

“It’s really good with Casper [Ankergren] and Stocko; they both wished me good luck for last night. It’s really good, it’s a lovely vibe with them and the other goalkeepers, of course."


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