Brighton & Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton met the media on Thursday afternoon ahead of this weekend's game in the Premier League against West Bromwich Albion at the Hawthorns.
He discussed his side's next set of opponents, provided an injury update and also spoke about some wider current issues surrounding the sport.
WEST BROM’S TOUGH RUN
They’ve won once in 20 but they have a good squad of players and recruited well in the summer – but sometimes even with that gifted squad for whatever reason it doesn’t happen for teams over a period of time.
We’ve already seen clubs turn their difficult starts around and they’re now showing good form – and so we have to look at the quality they have in the squad and be wary of that.
The personnel hasn’t changed – they play 4-4-2 and they have good options in what they have and that makes them dangerous and it’s a game they will want to win because they’re at home
GAMES COMING UP AGAINST TEAMS AROUND ALBION
It’s such a competitive division and there will always be teams that have bad periods and I don’t think I would be speaking out of turn if you look at people like West Ham and Everton who struggled and say that it can happen.
The most important results for us will be against the teams around us and what we know is that top group of teams won’t affect us as much.
It’s an opportunity, but every game is – each time you look ahead they’re big games.
It’s difficult to talk about upcoming periods in isolation because very game is a big one and a challenge and we know we’ll have to be at a level to get a result.
VAR TECHNOLOGY AND THE ROONEY RULE
It’s worked well [VAR] but the incidents shouldn’t become more than the game itself – if that’s the case then it’s a worthwhile experiment.
I just hope its not one that we start to use more and more but from what I’ve seen it works very well.
It’s a subject [Rooney Rule] I’ve spoke a lot about over the last year and I feel that the FA’s decision on it is a positive one.
I think we can speak about lots of rights and wrongs about what could have been done in the past, but we have to look at now and the progress that can be made from here.
They are the next stages [Premier League clubs] and all we want is progress to be made and to see more black and ethnic coaches involved at higher levels of the game.
AN INJURY UPDATE
We’ve all seen Izzy [Brown] as he was in today, and it’s the unfortunate side of the game. He’ll go back to Chelsea now but he has the character to come through it.
We are constantly assessing bringing players in and with Jamie [Murphy] and Izzy now both gone it has made us think about things again and we’ll do that over these coming days.
Steve Sidwell also now has an ankle problem over the last week and so he won’t be available for the next few months, but we have to continue to assess what we have – we’ve been without him for the season so far already so that isn’t a new one for us.
Beram [Kayal] coming back into the side was a big boost because in recent weeks because he’s been very much involved and played very well on Monday against Crystal Palace. That area of the field pleases me because we have good competition there and some scope there as well.
Supporters can watch Chris Hughton’s full look ahead to Saturday’s game at the Hawthorns above on Seagulls TV – and Albion fans can sign up the service by clicking here.