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HUGHTON APPLAUDS ALBION'S CHARACTER

20 January 2017

Albion's manager reflected on a memorable win for his side.


Brighton & Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton was delighted with the character shown by his side, and praised goalkeeper David Stockdale for his penalty save that inspired his team-mates to victory over Sheffield Wednesday.

The Seagulls secured a 2-1 win over the Owls after Anthony Knockaert’s late strike, but Hughton highlighted the positivity taken from Stockdale’s fine double save from Fernando Forestieri’s second-half spot kick.

He said, “There are always moments in games that can escalate that [team spirit], and of course, when you get a penalty save like that, if that can’t generate a fantastic feeling then nothing will.

“They’re a spirited group and it’s not the first time that we’ve shown this, and I think more so because we were up against a really good side.

“Sheffield Wednesday will be right up there pushing at the end, I’ve got no doubts about that, they’ve got a lot of quality and a wonderful squad.

“So that makes it even more pleasing, because of who the opposition were.”

Knockaert notched his ninth and tenth goals of the season either side of half-time for the Seagulls, and Hughton was pleased with the winger’s match-winning contribution.

“I thought he was outstanding today. He’s been fabulous for us and what you can do is look at the stats; ten goals for a wide player at this stage of the season is a wonderful return.

“We all know Anthony’s been through a lot but he’s also a creative wide player, and that type of player doesn’t go through a full season providing and producing every game.

“He’s been through a difficult period, and he’s had a little dip in form, but it’s also down to the position and the type of player that he is.”

Hughton also praised full-back Sebastien Pocognoli for his perfectly-weighted delivery for Knockaert’s winning goal, and applauded his team’s resilience after Glenn Murray’s sending off reduced Albion to ten men.

“It was a fantastic ball from Seb for the winning goal, it was a wonderful cross.

“But it’s David Stockdale’s save that sets us up, and what that always does, apart from anything that happens afterwards, is generate something.

“When you’re down to ten men, something like that can get that type of reaction. They put a lot of balls in and, at one stage, there was six or seven in the box.

“But we had to dig deep and, in the end, we managed to get a wonderful result.”

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