Shocked. Harsh. A ridiculous decision. No surprise: The football world reacts to Chris Hughton's sacking

Chris Hughton. Picture by Getty Images
Chris Hughton. Picture by Getty Images

Current and former players, football pundits and journalists have had their say on Brighton & Hove Albion sacking Chris Hughton this morning.

The Seagulls parted company with Hughton after a run of just three wins from 23 Premier League games, although he did keep them in the top flight for the second successive season.


Many feel the decision by Albion chairman Tony Bloom is harsh and are shocked, although former England midfielder Danny Murphy is in a minority and was not surprised by the decision.


Former England midfielder John Barnes has called Hughton's sacking 'a ridiculous decision'. Speaking to Sky Sports News, he said: "Chris did a fantastic job to keep Brighton in the Premier League as he did. But it shows expectations football fans have.


"I don't know what the Brighton fans or board expected.


"For a team like Brighton just to be in the Premier League is important and that's the name of the game. Yes, everyone talks about pushing on to try to finish in the top ten but what he did at Brighton was fantastic.


"It shows the level of unrealistic expectations football fans have generally. For me it's a ridiculous decision."

Former England striker Gary Lineker tweeted: "Sorry to see Chris Hughton has been fired. When he took over @OfficialBHAFC were in danger of being relegated to league One. They’ve now had 2 seasons in the Premier League. He did a fine job and will be a tough act to follow."


Former Aston Villa captain Paul McGrath wrote on Twitter: "Actually shocked at Brighton’s decision to sack Chris Hughton, another amazing job this year in keeping them in the premiership! Won’t be long until Chris and his team get a job with another premiership club, Brighton has lost a hero #gentleman."


Sky Sports football pundit Chris Kamara tweeted: "What a job he has done. What a fantastic manager he is. What a gentleman he is. What is this all about?".


Speaking on Sky Sports News, former Liverpool and Wigan goalkeeper Chris Kirkland said: "At the start of the season their main objective and only objective was to stay up and he's done that.


"Yes, they finished 17th and the second part of the season is obviously where the board are not happy with the points tally and some of the performances as well. But it's extremely harsh.


"It just goes to show how ruthless football is.


"He's a good man, has done a great job there and will be back in football again, there's no doubt about that. There will be a lot of clubs after him.


"It's certainly a ruthless sacking."

Who do you think should replace Chris Hughton as Brighton and Hove Albion manager? Vote here


Micky Hazard, a team-mate of Hughton's during their playing careers at Tottenham, tweeted: "Wow I’m in shock, Chris Hughton sacked by Brighton, is this a wind up? Incredible, football shows no loyalty whatsoever, the guy has worked miracles at that club and deserves far better treatment. Well that’s one club who’s results I won’t look out for anymore. Shocking."


Former Albion striker Jake Robinson put on Twitter: "Don't agree with the Hughton sacking personally, but it's very much Tony Bloom's perogative given the investment he has made. Let's hope it pays off."


Former England defender Danny Mills questioned what more Hughton could have done when speaking on Sky Sports News: "Pep Guardiola and Jurgen Klopp have ruined it for all other managers because not only are they winning, they're playing this incredible free-flowing attractive style.


"You can't do that at Brighton, you can't do that at Burnley or Watford or Cardiff or Huddersfield.


"The remit was stay in the Premier League. He's done that and he has done so much for the club over the last four years.


"Glenn Murray who is aging is their top scorer. What more can he do with the players he's got?


"The fans aren't happy with the style of football he plays. Pep says himself you can only play a certain way if you have the players that can do it.


"I sort of understand it. Maybe they're looking at trying to progress but equally I think it's a massive risk.


"You've got to be careful what you wish for. They want someone to come in and play fantastic football and more attractive but then they could get beat every week and they're back in the Championship. They won't be able to dig themselves out of that hole."


Cardiff captain Sol Bamba said on Sky Sports News: "The owners got scared by the second part of the season. He was on a bad run and I feel sorry for Chris because I think he is a top manager.


"He's done so well for the club. He took them up and kept them up and fans have to be careful what they wish for."


Former Liverpool and Tottenham midfielder Danny Murphy did not think the decision was a surprise and said on TalkSport: "I like Chris, I've worked with him and he did a wonderful job.


"When he went there they were in the lower echelons of the Championship and he got them promoted.


"He did a fantastic job but things evolve.


"I remember Southampton fans being in uproar when Nigel Adkins got sacked and Pochettino went in but look what happened. They cracked on.


"Everything evolves. The second half of the season, irrelevant of the results, fans were sick of what they were seeing. It was too negative.


"I think Chris could only do so much with the tools he had but he didn't really vary it enough and have a go when he could have maybe at times.


"I think the players got a bit tired of it. There were certain games where they got steamrollered in the last couple of months and they were all over the place. Their body language had changed.


"It's hard to judge when you're not on the inside of a club but with Dan Ashworth going in, I think he was always going to go.


"Dan is a very bright, smart guy. He'll be looking at the recruitment of where the money gets spent, he's very good at that.


"He'll have wanted to bring his own man in so we'll wait and see.


"Every club just evolves and bringing Dan Ashworth in meant straight away to me there was going to be a change."


Several national journalists have also had their say on Hughton's departure.


Paul Hayward wrote on Twitter: "Very sad that Chris Hughton has been made the fall guy at Brighton. Kept a thin squad in the Premier League for 2 years, reached an FA Cup semi.

Should have been given a chance next season to move the team on with better buys."


Darren Lewis tweeted: "Just appalling that Chris Hughton gets so little respect.


"Took Newcastle up - they sacked him.


"Took Brighton up, kept them up - they sacked him. People say he was too negative: maybe he should have opened up and gone down like Huddersfield and Cardiff."


Henry Winter tweeted: "Few people in football with more integrity, dignity, humility and kindness than Chris Hughton. Outstanding coach who developed into a good manager, who got #bhafc up, kept them up. Some recruitment/style issues, ok. But sacked? Football’s a magical sport but a merciless business."


Bookmaker PaddyPower also commented on the sacking and tweeted: "Brighton sack Chris Hughton for only keeping them up in the Premier League and getting them to an FA Cup semi final.


"Stop the world, I want to get off."

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