Hughton says fans have stepped up a gear, but he still can’t see the finish line

Albion boss Chris Hughton. Picture by Phil Westlake (PW Sporting Photography)
Albion boss Chris Hughton. Picture by Phil Westlake (PW Sporting Photography)

Chris Hughton believes Brighton & Hove Albion fans’ support has stepped up a gear this season, but says he still can’t see the finish line.

The Seagulls are two points clear at the top of the Championship and 12 ahead of third-placed Huddersfield Town, who have a game in hand.

Friday night’s hard-fought 2-1 win at Queens Park Rangers was made even better on Saturday as the chasing pack of Newcastle, Huddersfield and Reading all suffered defeats.

Promotion can be assured this weekend, but Hughton - who admitted even he felt the nerves in the last 15 minutes at Loftus Road on Friday - has continued to not get carried away.

Speaking on the backing they received at Queens Park Rangers on Friday night, the Albion boss said: “Going into the end as well, I thought the fans were magnificent. When you have the whole of that stand and they are vocal, very, very vocal it helps.

“They have been very, very good and listen I can only speak about the time that I have been here and they have been excellent.

“I think they have gone up a level this season and I can only think that is because where we have been in the division, but they have been excellent.

“I am delighted that we have been able to give them a good Friday night and we look forward to seeing them and having the same again at Wolves.”

Asked if he can now see the finish line, Hughton added: “I think at the moment you can’t afford to be like that. I would have to say at the moment every win feels like our biggest win.

“It’s been a good week, nine points from three games is fabulous at this stage of the season.”