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Club News


11 January 2019

Brighton & Hove Albion host Liverpool at the Amex Stadium on Saturday afternoon, and manager Chris Hughton believes the Merseyside club are favourites to lift the Premier League trophy come the end of the season.

Hughton spoke to the media ahead of this weekend’s clash on the south coast, and the Seagulls boss discussed the battle for the Premier League title, Bernardo’s injury, Nathan Jones’s appointment at Stoke City and Albion’s strategy against the Reds.

Adam Cottier from Premier League Productions simply asked Hughton ‘do you think Liverpool will win the league this season?’…

“At this moment I think they’re favourites, simply because of the point difference and that I think they’ve been outstanding.

“If we’re looking at the next team who are going to challenge the most, I don’t think I’d be speaking out of turn if I spoke about Manchester City.

“You certainly can’t write off a Manchester City team that have been the best team over the last few seasons and played the best football.

“I think Liverpool are favourites but I couldn’t tell you who’s going to win it, and I certainly wouldn’t put money on it.”

Elliott Cook from Sky Sports then asked the Albion boss for an update on the team news ahead of Saturday’s match…

“Bernardo will miss the game, and apart from Jahanbakhsh and Izquierdo, there are no other fresh injuries.

“We’re delighted with his progress but the decision we’ve made is to take it slower to make sure we have no problems with it.

“He’s coming along nicely — he’ll miss the weekend but we want to get him back as quickly as possible.”

Another question from Cook prompted Hughton to speak fondly about former Albion player and coach Nathan Jones, after the Welshman was appointed Stoke City manager this week…

“He’s got great enthusiasm and has great experience from the roles he’s done before the one he’s taken up now. Nathan has really good knowledge of the game.

“When a coach goes into a managerial position, you just hope they can be successful. If you look at what he’s done at Luton, you have to deem that as being very successful.

“He’s very passionate about the game and has great enthusiasm, but those two qualities don’t necessarily take you further — it’s about putting a team together and making sure you know how to get results.

“He’s obviously done that well enough at Luton to be put up for the Stoke job. Everybody here wishes him the best, because he served this club very well.”

Cottier then quizzed Hughton on what it takes to achieve a result against the Reds, as the Seagulls look to cause an upset…

“You need to have a defensive strategy — I don't think there’s any team that plays against them that can afford to go into the game without one.

“Even Manchester City — it was a great game between the teams, but Manchester City had to be mindful of the qualities that Liverpool have.

“But you need a strategy to get out, keep hold of the ball and also determine the best way to win the game.

“We’ll need periods on the ball, that goes without saying, because the longer and more often they have the ball, what they’ve showed is that they’ll break you down with the quality they have.”

Fans can watch the manager’s full look ahead to tomorrow's game against Liverpool on Seagulls TV above – and supporters can sign up to the service by clicking here. 

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