Brighton & Hove Albion v Southampton: The key points from Chris Hughton's pre-match press conference

Brighton manager Chris Hughton spoke to the press this afternoon ahead of Saturday's Premier League with Southampton. Here are the key points from the pre-match press conference.
Chris Hughton. Picture by PW Sporting PhotographyChris Hughton. Picture by PW Sporting Photography
Chris Hughton. Picture by PW Sporting Photography

What's the team news?

"From international duty everyone has come back okay.

"The two who in effect haven't been training are Gross and Andone.

"Andone trained today, Gross didn't so Gross won't be available but Andone we will make a decision on.

"Davy Propper is fine."

How have you used the international break?

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"We gave the players a few days off to recover and get away from here.

"The local European lads would have gone home for a couple of days and had that different environment in what has been quite a hectic time and what's going to be an even more hectic time.

"For those that haven't been playing regularly it's been an opportunity to step up their minutes and intensity on the training pitch.

"It's generally a good week's training and recovery, with the ability to switch off for a little while."

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It's eight games in four weeks now. How do you manage that with a big cup game on the horizon as well?

"It's a lot of games and we will be reliant on players being available.

"At this moment we're going into this period with probably only Pascal (Gross) not available. That will play an important part.

"As regards the management of it, it is very much taking one game at a time. We can't afford to start thinking about games in two, three games time or picking out specific games where we feel we've got a better chance of getting something.

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"It is about the management of playing one game, coming through that one hopefully without injuries and addressing the next one.

"Apart from the semi-final, every other game will give us an opportunity to get points however difficult that is on paper.

"It will help if we've got as many bodies fit as we have at the moment."

Do you think one more win will almost seal Premier League survival?

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"No I don't and I don't think we can afford to think that way.

"Nobody knows what it will take. This is a big game for us as they all are. It's a game against a team that are in the same area of the league as we are.

"That does add another importance to the game. It's a home game and an opportunity for us to get points.

"I don't think we can afford to start thinking that three, four, five points. I would rather think about 40 points which is what I've always done."

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What do you make of the job Ralph Hasenhuttl has done at Southampton?

"I think he's done an outstanding job.

"There's a way of playing and there's results. What he has done is had a good mixture of both. If I think of their recent games at home to Tottenham and away to Manchester United they were two really good performances, particularly second half against Tottenham and it was a really good all-round performance at Old Trafford.

"They are playing well enough and that comes with some of the results they have picked up."

Southampton haven't played for three weeks. Will they be affected by that?

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"I don't know. We will only know at the end of a performance.

"A free week can be a fantastic break where they have managed to train hard and come away from the pressures of the game and revitalised or it's three weeks away - not for all because some would have been involved in international games - from competitive league action."

Do you view it as just one relegation spot left with Fulham and Huddersfield looking like they will go down?

"I don't think any of us in the game can afford to think that way.

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"We know for Fulham and Huddersfield the task is tougher but until you get to a stage where mathematically it's not possible then anybody has a chance.

"We have to keep fighting and be as competitive as we can and to think all of the teams below us are very capable of winning games and climbing out of danger.

"That's the type of pressure we need to continue to put on ourselves."

Danny Ings is back available for Southampton. How much of a threat will he be?

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"He's a good player. Amongst the injuries he has had, he was very well thought of up at Liverpool.

"Probably they've only let him go to give him games because he wasn't going to get the game time but I know they thought a lot of him up there.

"He's done well in the games he's played at Southampton.

"It's another threat in a team that at this moment are a very good offensive team."


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