Date: 5th October 2015 at 6:29pm
Written by:

Manager Chris Hughton has said he couldn’t have asked for more from the players in this weekend’s game against Cardiff City.

Video – Cardiff Highlights
Audio – Cardiff Reactions

Speaking to the Official Site following the one all draw, Hughton was obviously disappointed to not see us pick up a maximum return of points but he knows the players gave their all in search of victory and it just wasn’t to be.

It does mean though our unbeaten run stretches to ten games now though.

‘You can’t ask any more than to be unbeaten after ten games and top of the division. If you are analysing games and you are trying to be the best that you can, then we can look at the last three draws and say we certainly should have won two of them. In my time since I have been here we are certainly getting some points that we perhaps would not have got last season, but I was disappointed that in a game we dominated we did not come out with three points. We showed great character when we went a goal down and I didn’t see too many Cardiff chances after that. They worked their chance very well, it was early in the game and we needed a response from the team – which we certainly saw. What we must do is turn the dominance and possession into opportunities and ultimately goals. We were not able to do that today, but first and foremost you want to be playing to a level that allows you to have opportunities, and we are doing that at the moment.’

With Dale Stephens getting on the scoresheet, he came in for particular praise alongside Solly March and the gaffer also explained why he brought Lewis Dunk back into the starting eleven for the match.

‘Dale was outstanding today. He was box-to-box with great energy levels and it was another good goal for him. I am really pleased for Dale as he had a tough time last season with the injury, which took him a little while to get back from, but he is certainly at the top of his game at the moment. My decision to bring Dunky back in was two-fold. He did very well against Kenwyne Jones at Cardiff last season. Also, we have four very good centre-halves and sometimes you have to manoeuvre them around a little bit and change them for certain games and that was my choice today; and I thought that we handled Jones very well. Solly came into the game in that first half. He did not start that well but he is a player who has certainly played far more on the right hand side than the left so it took him a little while to get into his stride. When you are that type of player and a winger, you are waiting for the game to open up a little bit and what Cardiff did do in the early phases was kept a very tight unit and made it very difficult for him, but I thought that as the game opened up he got better and better.’

The game also made it two weeks in a row that Hughton was less than pleased with certain decisions made by a referee, and two decisions specifically irked him from this match.

‘I was unhappy with two decisions in particular. One where Solly March was impeded by the lad Fabio. He was already on a booking. It was certainly premeditated, it was quite obvious what he was doing and it was a yellow card so he should have been sent off. The second one was that we felt we had a great penalty claim on our first corner. In fact we had two penalty claims. One on Lewis Dunk and one on Tomer Hemed. Tomer was tugged back, so we felt aggrieved with those two decisions but in regards to the performance I could not be happier.’

With March coming in for praise, he was also interviewed following the game and he talked about growing in confidence as the game went on – but of course he was disappointed to not see us take the win as well.

‘I started believing in myself and thought I could go past the right back every time. It was a good second half for me personally but also for the team as well. We were unlucky not to get the win. They scored within the first few minutes and other than that we really dominated. It is frustrating but we are still top.’

With the gaffer talking about penalties and the lack of a red card, March went on to say himself that on a different day they would’ve been down to ten men and we would’ve been given a shot from 12 yards at least once.

‘I think it was a one-two and the right back blocked me off. That could have been a booking on another day if the referee saw it we maybe may have had a penalty as well, but sometimes you get them, sometimes you don`t. It happens in football matches. Last week we might have got a harsh one but you get good decisions and bad decisions.’

Brighton Bloggers

Join The Vital Debate