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HUGHTON FRUSTRATED AT LEAKING SET-PIECE GOALS

13 January 2018

Paul Hazlewood
Chris Hughton at the Hawthorns.

Brighton & Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton felt his team were made to pay for not dealing with another two set-pieces against West Bromwich Albion, but insists there wasn’t a big gap in quality between the teams.

Headers either side of half-time from Jonny Evans and Craig Dawson secured all three points for the hosts, and Hughton was disappointed to see his team concede twice from corners, as they lost 2-0 at the Hawthorns.

He said, “It’s hugely disappointing because I don’t think there was a lot between the two teams.

“We’ve found it difficult defending from set-plays and corners. We’ve conceded goals and probably worked as hard in the last few weeks on defending set-plays, as we have done all season.

“That was the difference between the two teams. The first goal really hurt us because the crowd were buoyed by the fact they were 1-0 up.

“If they don’t get that goal, then I think we are right in it. On the balance of play, I don’t think there was too much of a difference between the teams.”

Hughton highlighted his team’s commitment to get forward in wide areas and deliver crosses into the penalty area, but also admitted his players needed to trouble West Brom goalkeeper Ben Foster with more efforts on goal.

“I thought we got into a lot of good areas, but what we didn’t do was work the goalkeeper enough.

“They’re probably the two areas - one, we’ve got to stop conceding, predominantly from corners, and two, we’ve got to be more productive in that final third.

“Some of our work to get there was good, we got into a lot of really good crossing positions, but we weren’t productive enough in front of goal.”

The Baggies ended a 20-game run without a Premier League victory, and Hughton praised the defensive work of Alan Pardew’s men, and insisted the Seagulls arrived at the Hawthorns with three points in mind.

“What we’re doing is playing against better opposition. They’re a big, powerful side that defended very well against what we got into the box.

“They blocked shots and the goalkeeper did very well, but we didn’t threaten them enough.

“It’s not about the hard work that we do - we’re a team that play with two wingers and we certainly got a lot of balls into those areas.

“It’s not like we came here with a defensive head on. We came here trying to win, to play through the thirds and create opportunities.”


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