Sidwell reflected on the club's progress after signing a new deal.
Brighton & Hove Albion midfielder Steve Sidwell is delighted to extend his stay at the club after signing a new one-year deal yesterday, and commented on the remarkable 15-year journey since his first spell with the Seagulls.
After coming through the youth ranks at Arsenal, Sidwell joined Albion on loan in 2002, and the experienced midfielder reflected on the club’s progression over the years, after signing a new contract.
He said, “From the days at the Withdean, who would of thought we’d be playing Premier League football in a lovely stadium like the Amex, against some of the greatest footballers in the world?”
“I’m delighted to sign a new deal. It was obviously the main reason why I came to the club, to get back into the Premier League. I saw the visions of everyone, it was an achievable goal and we’ve done that.
“It was a no-brainer. After dotting the I’s and crossing the T’s, it was all done fairly quickly. I’ve been on holiday with the kids, so that obviously took priority, but I’m glad it’s all done and dusted now.
“I left Stoke to come to Brighton and achieve a goal, and it was one that we could all see in the near future. The season before last was a blessing in disguise, we were mentally stronger this year.
“It’s a nice feeling to be back in the Premier League, it’s going to be tough but it’s a challenge that we should all be looking forward to.”
Albion manager Chris Hughton will get the chance to work with the midfielder for a third successive season, and Sidwell was full of praise for the 58-year-old, before commenting on his own performances last season.
“I’ve been fortunate enough to work under some of the best coaches in the world throughout my career, and he’s definitely one of them.
“He’s been brilliant, especially with me being a senior pro. It’s great to get the deal over the line and work with him again.
“You always want to play more games, but I understand there’s going to be squad rotation throughout the season.
“But on the whole, I think I performed to a decent level during the season, hence being offered a new contract and given the chance to stake a place in Brighton’s Premier League team.”