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Club News


12 August 2017

Paul Hazlewood
Albion manager Chris Hughton.

Brighton & Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton urged his players to show no fear as they take on Manchester City in the club’s first-ever Premier League game at the Amex today.

The Seagulls boss showed understanding towards the task in hand, as Pep Guardiola’s team travel to the south coast, but highlighted the importance of his team showing confidence in their own ability.

He said, “We must play with intelligence, as we’re going to be playing against teams that are better than us.

“There will be some tough days, particularly away from home, but we must go into the season with confidence and no fear.

“We’re very much ready for the challenges ahead. Fortunately for us, there isn't any player in our squad that doesn’t know the Premier League, the players and their quality.

“It’s not like going into the unknown; but it will be a tough, challenging season, and they need to make sure they’re up for it.”

Anthony Knockaert will get his second crack at Premier League football, after playing in the top flight with Leicester City, and Hughton backed the Frenchman to continue improving and rise to the occasion.

“The first thing he does realise, because of the type of player he is, is that the levels will be higher.

“He’ll be up against better defenders and some of the things that he might have got away with last season, he won’t now.

“Sometimes that kind of player needs to simplify his game a little bit and look for them moments, but he’ll be aware of that.

“He’s still very young and developing as a player, but I’m confident that he’ll have an impact on the team, just like he did last season.”

Albion will kick off their Premier League campaign in front of a sell-out crowd at the Amex, and Hughton agreed that his players will need to make the most of home advantage throughout the season.

“It goes without saying that it’s harder to play away from home. You’ll have some teams that will have unusual records, like Newcastle in the Championship, but generally it’s about home form.

“For whatever games we win this season, the likelihood is that we’ll win more of them at home than we will away.

“Fortunately for us, we’ve been very strong during my time here. It’s going to be very important for us and we’ve got a wonderful support that have backed us - they will be crucial.”

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