Date: 5th April 2017 at 10:19pm
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Manager Chris Hughton has given his reaction to Tuesday evening’s victory over Birmingham City and he credited the work rate of the Brighton side as they took the three points.

Welcoming Gianfranco Zola’s side to the Amex Stadium for the tie, Brighton took a three one victory with goals coming from Glenn Murray, Tomer Hemed and Uwe Hunemeier and he wasn’t going to let their late consolation take the shine off things for him.

Speaking to the Official Site in his post game press conference, a pleased Hughton explained.

‘Our hard work has put us in that position (top of the tree on Tuesday evening), but the last two games have shown you that it can go either way. We were the better side on Saturday and deserved to win, but it could have gone against us. Probably if we hadn`t have got the early goal today, this game would have been a lot tougher and the result may have been a lot closer than what it was. You have to go into every game knowing that if you`re not at the levels, it can dramatically go against you.’

With Glenn Murray getting on the scoresheet again in the second minute of the tie, Hughton knew that had settled us but he most pleased about how the side built on that early advantage to ensure the game was effectively tied up before the hour mark had been reached and the improvement in the second especially drew praise as we added the second and third on the day.

‘The fact that we got the early goal certainly motivates the team and lifts them. We then had a difficult period where we almost rested on that one, and you can`t afford to do that against anybody. Fortunately for us, we were better in that second-half period. It was a little bit scrappy towards the end, but we were up against a team that were trying different systems and putting talented players on. They really tested us.’

With Lewis Dunk going off just after the half hour mark in the opening period and being replaced by Fikayo Tomori, Hughton went on to praise the youngsters performance in the remainder of the game and also explained the switch.

‘I thought he did very well. It`s a natural position for him, and whether he`ll end up at right-back, I don’t know. But he`s equally as good in both positions and he`s a young player. It`s great experience for him, coming on at that stage of the game. There wasn`t too much time for him to think about it and he was very much tested.’

Adding about Dunk.

‘Lewis was ill yesterday, saw the doctor today and was a lot better. He felt that he was fine, but it certainly became evident in the first half that he was struggling a little bit. He`ll have to recover over the next couple of days and hopefully he`ll be okay for Friday`s game (Queens Park Rangers).’

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