Brighton manager Chris Hughton has praised his side’s second half performance, after they drew 1-1 with Newcastle on Saturday afternoon.
The Seagulls earned a point thanks to Pascal Gross’ second half header, after Ayoze Perez gave Newcastle the lead in the first period. The draw sees them move four points clear of the relegation zone, with just two more games to play.
Speaking after the game, Hughton reflected on his side’s performance. As quoted on the club’s official website, he said: “That performance probably sums up how we’ve been - a little bit fragile at both ends, not looking like scoring or creating too much, and a little bit vulnerable.
“But it was a good second-half performance and they showed lots of spirit. The reaction from the team in the second half is what you want to see.”
After a lethargic opening 45 minutes for the Seagulls, they came into the second half revitalised. They greatly improved and gained immense confidence, and their hard work resulted in a deserved goal with 15 minutes to play.
Further reflecting on Brighton’s second half display, Hughton said: “It’s about energy, we certainly showed more energy in the second half. The shape gave us that extra player in the middle of the park, which gives you that little bit more possession.”
It was a much needed goal for Brighton, who had gone a worrying six straight league games without a goal. Gross finally ended a run of more than 700 minutes without a goal, as he beat Newcastle goalkeeper Martin Dubravka to the ball to head home Glenn Murray’s looping cross.
Brighton remain 17th in the Premier League table, just above the relegation zone. They now sit four points ahead of 18th placed Cardiff City, whose relegation could be confirmed next weekend if they lose at home against Crystal Palace.
Brighton finish the season off with two absolutely massive games, starting with a trip to the Emirates to face Arsenal next Sunday. They then return to the AMEX for the final day, as they host title challengers Manchester City on 12 May.