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Club News


30 November 2018

Paul Hazlewood
Bernardo in action against Leicester City at the Amex Stadium.

Brighton & Hove Albion defender Bernardo accepts the physicality of the Premier League makes a big difference when considering his favoured position on the pitch, and admits his attributes are better suited to playing at left-back.

The versatile 23-year-old arrived on the south coast from Red Bull Leipzig this summer, and despite playing numerous positions for previous clubs over the years, he weighed up his options in England.

He said, “I would say that my favourite position is centre-back, but here in this league I’m a very skinny guy, so a defender with my style, not so strong but with other qualities, would fit better in other leagues.

“Here, I don’t see myself playing as a central defender, because the strikers are very heavy and always rely on their power.

“But I like left-back a lot, because it combines my best features. I’m a good defender and also enjoy playing with the ball.

“I’m not saying that I’m the most technical player, but everyone wants to play and have the opportunity to go forward.”

Chris Hughton recalled the Brazilian for last weekend’s 1-1 draw against Leicester City, and Bernardo believes it was the reward for weeks of hard work, stressing that he is now focused on keeping his place in the team.

He said, “I think I deserved it. I was training hard for weeks — obviously the beginning was not what I expected, the first match [v Watford] specifically was a shock.

“I knew I would have to move up a level, otherwise I knew I wouldn’t play. I worked really hard and the coaches noticed that. They gave me really positive feedback over the weeks.

“They understood I was ready for the last match, and obviously I didn’t come here to spend the whole season on the bench.

“There are some very good players in my position, and at some point everyone is going to play. But I needed to change the impression I left from the first match, and I think I did quite a good job.”

Bernardo arrived in England after European spells in Austria and Germany, and the defender revealed the discussions he had with former team-mates before and after his switch to the Seagulls.

“I know he’s not in the Premier League anymore, but Oliver Burke was the only player that I spoke with before coming to the Premier League.

“He’s a big friend of mine and we played together in Germany. He gave me some advice — I asked him about the league and about Brighton.

“I don’t know many Brazilian guys. Naby Keita was also new to the league, so I couldn’t ask him because we were in the same boat.

“We played together at two clubs, in Austria and Germany. He’s a very nice guy and I wish the best for him at Liverpool.”

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