Brighton boss Chris Hughton says Manchester United deserved to lose as his side secured survival
By Ron Walker
Last Updated: 04/05/18 11:23pm
Chris Hughton said Brighton fully deserved the win which secured their Premier League survival against Manchester United on Friday night.
The Seagulls secured only their second ever victory over United thanks to Pascal Gross' second-half header, which proved enough to ensure their survival for next season in the top flight.
Hughton and his Albion players celebrated with a lap of honour at full-time, in Brighton's last home game of the season, and the manager was left feeling impressed by the manner of his side's win over a woefully below-par United team.
He said: "I'm particularly pleased with the performance. Normally when you win these games, it's because your goalkeeper has had to make saves and they've missed chances. But I don't think they had a clear-cut chance and we were good value for the win.
"It's a relief because even going into the game I felt, for our season's work so far, that we deserved to stay in this league. So it's a relief that we've done it and I'm really proud of the group of players."
Brighton were favourites for the drop at the start of the campaign but could conceivably finish in the top half in their first top-division season since 1983.
Hughton paid tribute to his players' team spirit as a key factor in their survival, including some good results against big clubs, taking points from Arsenal, Tottenham and now Manchester United among others.
He said: "This is a group of players with great belief and discipline. We learned after the first few games that the performances were good enough that we weren't always going to get beat, and that gave us confidence.
"When we've needed a big moment, what's obvious is we've had two really good performances away at Old Trafford and we've drawn against Spurs. In the big games, we've shown we can compete. If we get a little bit of fortune, a little bit of luck goes our way, but I thought to a man we were superb tonight."