Brighton & Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton met the media on Thursday afternoon as he discussed a number of topics ahead of Saturday’s trip to face Newcastle United at St James’ Park.
Sky Sports News Reporter Dickie Davies asked the boss for an injury update going into the contest…
Have you got the team news for us ahead of the game?
“Davy Propper will miss the game – he sustained an ankle injury against West Ham United the other week. He’ll probably be out for a period of weeks, we’re not sure on a timescale yet so we’ll have to assess it, but it will certainly be a period of weeks.
“Pascal Gross, Dale Stephens and Gaetan Bong are the others who we have to make verdicts on and they’ll be late decisions.
“Pascal is just back in training with us, as is Dale. Gaetan was away on international duty but didn’t play – apart from that everyone else is fit and available for the game this weekend.”
Davies went on to quiz the boss on the impact of the win over West Ham United last time out…
What has the win over West Ham United done for the mood amongst the squad and what have you done during the international break?
“We’re now at a stage where we had eight players away – so it’s quite difficult to do much tactical work during that period. But it is a really good opportunity for the ones who haven’t been playing to get some time off and we gave them an extended weekend.
“There’s always a better feel going into the break on the back of a victory and there’s been a nice feel around the place this week – the players have worked hard.
“What they now know is that it’s back to business because it will be a really tough game on Saturday.”
Davies then asked the manager for his thoughts on the game this weekend…
What do you make of the game this weekend – will Newcastle United see it as a chance to get three points and do you see it as a chance to get some points away from home?
“Looking at it logically, they’ll be the favourites as they’re the home side and we’ve both faced a similar calibre of opposition so far this term.
“I think it will be a bit of a relief for them that they’re not playing one of the league’s so-called bigger sides in the top six. We’ve also had some very tough games, and this is another one for us – we know it’s a challenge to do better away from home for ourselves."
Davies also got the manager’s thoughts on Lewis Dunk’s inclusion in the England squad over the past week…
How pleased were you for Lewis to be involved with the national team over the past week?
“I'm really delighted for him and delighted for this football club – because there are a lot of people here who have seen his progression through the ranks first-hand.
“I’ve seen him for close to four years now, but others have seen his development even more so. He’s been knocking on the international door for a while now and he’s in a position where the side has good options.
“For him to be part of that group is great praise for his conduct and willingness to learn over the last few years. He would have been looking on from the bench and taking in what it requires to perform at that level, so it will have been really good for him.”
Premier League Productions reporter Adam Cottier then asked Hughton about some specific performances from his side this term and what they’ve shown him…
You got your first clean sheet last time out against West Ham United and you’ve mentioned the performance against Liverpool – do those results show an increase in resilience this season?
“I think we’re more knowledgeable about the league this season and certainly more confident as well. I think we recruited well over the summer and now have good competition – but resilience is built over a period of time.
“I think we’ve showed it this season and last time at home we had to dig deep against a good side that asked us a lot of questions.
“It was great to get the first clean sheet and that will have drummed home to the players that if you’re able to do that, you have a chance of winning games – I want us to get back to a few more of those.”