The Albion boss backed his players to cope under pressure.
Brighton & Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton believes his team are mentally prepared for an intense end to the season, starting with Derby County’s visit to the Amex tonight.
The Seagulls returned to winning ways with a 2-0 victory over Rotherham United on Tuesday night, and Hughton praised his players' efforts to regain their focus after successive defeats.
He said, “This is such a competitive league, you cannot win all of your games. Everyone is going to be competitive and there will be some games where you can reach the levels required.
“But there will also be other games where you can’t. Thankfully for us, on more occasions that not, we’ve reached those levels this season.
“In regards to what the players put into every game, mentally they’re in a very good position for the large majority of the games they play.
“It’s a very competitive division and we have to realise that the top sides around us aren’t going to lose many games.”
The Rams occupy tenth spot in the league table and sit ten points adrift of the final play-off spot, and Hughton believes the rest of the division have taken advantage of their unexpected position this season.
“If I look at our position and the other teams that are in the top six, we’ve all benefited from three teams that we would have expected to have been there, and that’s Derby, Aston Villa and Norwich.
“They’ve had difficulties this season that have not seen them in the top six. What you can have one season can be completely different the next season.
“There’s no divine right for any team to gain promotion. We’ve seen teams come down from the Premier League and they’ve found it tough to go straight back up again.
“It’s the level of competition in this division, and generally the teams that gain promotion are the ones that deserve it.”
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After back-to-back away trips, Albion return to the Amex for this evening’s game and Hughton applauded the club’s loyal supporters for their backing this season.
“If we’re talking about players performing, then certainly the supporters have also performed incredibly well this season.
“Credit to the players for their application, because the supporters, in most cases, have enjoyed what they’ve seen this season.
“They’ve been excellent and the noise level at the Amex has increased. Away from home, we played against Rotherham and at times it felt like a home game.
“In these final ten games, we’ll need them every bit as much as what we’ve needed them throughout the season so far.”
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