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HUGHTON FINDS POSITIVES IN NARROW CUP DEFEAT

19 September 2017

Paul Hazlewood
Albion manager Chris Hughton at the Vitality Stadium.

Brighton & Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton was pleased to see a number of players collect valuable game time against Bournemouth, but admitted his disappointment after conceding in extra time to exit the Carabao Cup.



Joshua King struck in the first half of extra time after neither side could break the deadlock in 90 minutes, but Hughton touched upon the positive aspects of Albion’s narrow third-round defeat to the Cherries.


He said, “It was always going to be about getting as many positives out of the game as you can, and trying to get a result, and we certainly came very close to that.

“We knew we’d have to defend well, and for large periods of the game we did that. They’ve got real good quality in that forward area and we restricted them to minimal chances.

“You’re going to have games like that, where you have to defend well and break from that shape. But the biggest positive is the game time that players have had.

“[Ezequiel] Schelotto got his first 90 minutes, even more than 90 minutes, Jose [Izquierdo] as well, and there were some real good aspects of his game today - he looked a threat.

“We pushed them close, but I’m disappointed we didn't get a result or even push them to penalties, because the longer the game went, I thought it was going that way.”

Under-23 players Jayson Molumby and Dessie Hutchinson played 120 minutes in central midfield for the Seagulls, as the latter made his first senior appearance, and Hughton was pleased to hand them an opportunity in the cup.

“Jayson Molumby was with us in the last round, but with Dessie [Hutchinson], it was his first inclusion in the squad.

“It was a tough day, with the quality that Bournemouth have got, but I was really pleased for both of them.

“It’s an important part of the game. When I first came to the club, it was something that was stressed upon me - how they value the academy that we have.

“Hence why the chairman and owner provided us with the facility that we have at the training ground, where it’s not just first-team orientated, it’s about developing and bringing players through.”

Newcastle United loanee Tim Krul made his first start since joining the club, and Hughton applauded the 29-year-old for his confident display, before commenting on the tough decision he had to make between the sticks.

“I felt he was very good and very assured. Some of the saves that he made weren’t very difficult, but he needed to show good hands. Overall, it was a very assured performance.

“Niki [Maenpaa] was very unfortunate to miss out. I had a tough decision to make and I went with Tim [Krul] because he was the one that needed the game.

“He played one game in pre-season behind closed doors, so he hadn't had so much game time, which is why he got the nod ahead of Niki. It was a difficult one, but these are the decisions you have to make.”


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