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HUGHTON: TEAM ETHIC COMES FIRST

26 August 2017

Paul Hazlewood
Albion manager Chris Hughton.

Brighton & Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton focused on the importance of having team players in his squad this season, but also understands the need for individual creativity in the forward areas.

Record signing Jose Izquierdo could make his Albion debut against Watford at Vicarage Road today, and Hughton revealed what he looks for in a player, both individually and collectively.

He said, “First and foremost, for any of those type of [flair] players that we have, such as Knockaert and Jose, the first priority is that they’ve got to be team players.

“We’re not the type of team, with the level that we are, that can afford to play very much off the cuff and allow players too much freedom.

“But on the other hand, we need players that can create, win us games and get us goals, and they are those type of players.

“Amongst a good team ethic, we need that type of player that can make the difference in these games.”

The Seagulls are yet to claim their first points in the Premier League, after back-to-back 2-0 defeats to Manchester City and Leicester City, and Hughton assessed Albion’s start to the season.

“The Man City game was difficult. We were hoping that they didn't buy what they did during pre-season and might have taken a few games to get into their stride.

“But they ended up having a very good pre-season and I think you have to take that one aside. For a team the level of ours, I don't think there would have been many teams that would have played too differently.

“At Leicester, the biggest difference was that we conceded in that first minute and conceded from a set play.

“We had more possession and play in the final third than what they had, but they showed a little bit more Premier League experience and nous.

“We need to get used to what this Premier League is and the levels, but we’ve got to be in the game and the only way you can be in games is by expressing yourself and getting on the ball.”

The Hornets are currently enjoying their third consecutive season of Premier League football, and although the Hertfordshire side have had three managers in that time, Hughton praised them for their progress, both on and off the field.

“Their turnover of players in the last four-year period has been huge. They’ve developed as a club and the stadium looks fabulous now.

“They’ve probably gone against the grain in the way that they've done it, but whatever formula it is, they’ve been successful in doing it.”


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