Chris Hughton hailed his Brighton team for finally securing their first clean sheet of the season in their 1-0 victory over West Ham. Glenn Murray’s 99th goal for the club gave Brighton the lead at half-time, but it was their organised and resilient defending – coming on the same day centre-backs Lewis Dunk and Shane Duffy signed new five-year contracts – that gave Hughton the most satisfaction as they climbed to 12th in the Premier League.
Heading into the international break, Hughton’s team have a total of eight points from eight fixtures in which Manchester City, Manchester United, Liverpool and Tottenham have been among their opposition, and the Brighton manager was delighted.
Hughton said: “The clean sheet’s really important for us.
“We spoke a lot about the start of the season we’ve had – we’ve had to play four of the big teams – but it’s no good speaking that way if you’re not able to capitalise on some of the games that are against very, very good opposition, but not top-six opposition. That showed.
“We were up against a really good West Ham side and you can see them scoring a lot of goals this season. We did the defensive things well and had to ride our luck a bit but the clean sheet was very pleasing.
“(Duffy and Dunk) deserve (their contracts) for what they’ve given this football club and will continue to give.”