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Chris Hughton admits he was "disappointed and surprised" by Brighton sacking

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Hughton speaks out on shock sacking

One of the main stories to come from the end of the Premier League season was surrounding the future of then Brighton boss Chris Hughton, who was surprisingly sacked by the Seagulls.

Since arriving at the AMEX Stadium back in 2014 the former Newcastle United & Norwich City has worked wonders with the club, which resulted in them winning promotion to the Premier League for the first time in their history.

Albion missed out on the Championship title by just a point to Hughton's former club Newcastle on the final day of the season but it was still a massive achievement to get them over the line. They've since managed to retain their top flight status in each of the two campaigns that've followed so it's pretty shocking that the 60 year-old now finds himself without a club going into the summer.

The Seagulls have finished 15th (17/18) and 17th (18/19) in each of their Premier League campaigns but for the closing stages of last term they looked in real danger of being sucked into the drop zone, only for Cardiff City to finish two points behind them.

The threat of relegation was clearly too much for the Brighton board to contend with and they felt like action had to be taken, which led to him being ultimately replaced by Swansea City manager Graham Potter.

Graham Potter Swansea
Graham Potter has been brought in to replace Hughton

Brighton chairman Tony Bloom admitted it was a hard decision. “Undoubtedly, this has been one of the most difficult decisions I have had to make as chairman of Brighton & Hove Albion, but ultimately one I have made due to how we struggled in the second half of the season.

“Our run of 3 wins from 23 Premier League matches put our status at significant risk. It is with that in mind, and the performances during that period, that I now feel it’s the right time for a change."

It was a decision that shocked everyone in the football world and especially the man himself, who's released a statement via the LMA (League Managers Association) which read:

"I was hugely disappointed and surprised by the decision that was made to end my time with Brighton and Hove Albion FC.

I thoroughly enjoyed my four and a half years managing this special football club. I would like to put on record my gratitude to my coaching staff, the players, fans, everyone connected to the club and the wider community of Brighton & Hove and wish them luck for the future."

Sacking Hughton was a massive gamble by the club and he's not expected to be out of work for long, with the likes of Middlesbrough and West Bromwich Albion both linked with a move for him. He has an excellent track record of bringing success at each club he's worked at by making them robust and hard to beat.

It appears that Brighton want to move in a slightly different direction under Potter, with the former Swans boss known for playing attractive, attacking football. The former Ostersunds boss has massive boots to fill and it's going to be interesting to see how he fares in the top flight, especially with this being his first crack at it.