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HUGHTON: THE GAME HAS CHANGED

3 December 2018

Brighton & Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton showed sympathy for opposing manager David Wagner after Steve Mounie’s sending off on Saturday, but highlighted developments in football as a reason behind the referee’s decision.

The Seagulls played against ten men from the 32nd minute onwards after the striker’s dismissal for a challenge on Yves Bissouma, and Hughton gave his thoughts on the game-changing incident.

He said, “If you look at Dale’s [Stephens] sending off at Cardiff, it was exactly the same — the referee was in a very good position for it.

“He has to make a decision around the force of contact, but there’s no doubt that he’s caught him, because [Yves] Bissouma’s shin shows that.

“But if I’m David [Wagner], I’d be feeling aggrieved as well — that’s normal when it’s your own player.

“These are sending offs that a good few years ago wouldn’t have been sending offs. But it’s more difficult for the referees now and the game has changed.”



Solly March claimed assists for both of Albion’s goals at The John Smith’s Stadium, and Hughton challenged the winger to take his game one step further by adding goals of his own.

“I’m not even sure he’s a player of potential anymore, because he’s played a lot of games for us now.

“What you want from a wide player is assists and goals — probably the latter is the bit that he needs to add to his game.

“He’s a very talented player and we’ve played him in a couple of positions. He’s given us assists for goals and the next step up for him is to actually contribute goals himself.”



The Seagulls moved to 18 points after 14 matches, ahead of Tuesday’s meeting with Crystal Palace at the Amex Stadium, and Hughton insists his team can still improve on the pitch.

“At this moment, am I happy? Yes. Do I think we can play better? Yes. Probably at this stage we haven't played as consistently well as I would have liked.

“I’m hoping there’s more to come, and particularly with the likes of [Florin] Andone, Bernardo, Bissouma and [Jurgen] Locadia pushing hard.

“[Leon] Balogun also came on at right-back, and these are all players that are pushing to get into the team.”


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