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Club News


5 May 2017

The key talking points from the manager's press conference.

At his pre-match press conference, Brighton & Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton commented on his team’s chance to win the Sky Bet Championship, gave an update on Sam Baldock, spoke about Albion’s preparations for Sunday’s game, and commented on Steve Bruce’s impact at Villa Park.

Winning the Championship: “It’s hugely important, but of course it’s not the main ambition of this season, we’ve already achieved that [promotion].

“But from the moment we achieved our goal, very quickly after that, it was about winning the title.

“We’ve been in the top two for most of the season, it’s really been ourselves and Newcastle. We all felt that the team that finished closest to Newcastle would be the team that got promoted.

“We’ve got one last opportunity, but I do think there’ll be that tinge of disappointment if we’re not able to do it."

Preparing for the game: “It hasn’t been difficult at all [motivating the players], and I would have said the same going into the last two games.

“More so with the last game, because with the Norwich game there was a four-day turnaround and possibly the result and performance was more of an emotional one.

“But certainly in the last game, we had good preparation and exactly the same for this one. We have one last opportunity to win the title, and that’s absolutely something that we want to do."

Baldock's return: “He’s [Sam Baldock] very much in contention. He’s trained well all week.

“It’s a consequence of what he’s done all season for us. He’s had a really good impact and added more goals than what he got last season.

“If we’re looking for an improvement in a player, Sam has given us similar to what he gave us last season, because of the player he is, but he’s added more goals."

Steve Bruce’s impact at Villa: “He’s brought in some good players and it’s quite obvious that he’s starting to put his stamp on the group of players that he’s got.

“They had a really good start when he first came in, then a slight dip, but they’ve recently gone on a very good run, apart from last week’s result [1-0 loss at Blackburn].

“Steve’s [Bruce] a top manager. He knows how to get promotion from this division, and looking at next season, with the teams going down and the teams that will have a really good go, that’s probably why I’m even more delighted that we’ve managed to do it this season.

“If we thought the Championship was tough this season, I think it will be even tougher next year.”

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