13 January 2022

Graham Potter urges Brighton to keep effort up until whistle blows

13 January 2022

Brighton boss Graham Potter has urged his players to continue harnessing the never-say-die spirit of Sir Alex Ferguson’s Manchester United side going into their latest grudge match with Crystal Palace.

High-flying Albion have snatched five Premier League points courtesy of added-time strikes this term, including September’s dramatic 1-1 draw with bitter rivals Palace at Selhurst Park.

Patrick Vieira’s Eagles travel to the south coast on Friday evening for the sold-out return match at the Amex Stadium.

Seagulls head coach Potter, who has also seen his team nab victory at Brentford and draws away to Southampton and Chelsea thanks to goals scored after the 90th minute, wants to keep scrapping for results in so-called ‘Fergie time’.

“It’s an important thing to have as a team,” he said.

“If you remember Manchester United and the ‘Fergie time’ – good teams can keep going and they get things at the end of matches. It’s a nice quality to have.

“I wouldn’t want to compare myself to Sir Alex in any way. But from our perspective, we insist they keep going, that their body language is good, that they focus on the next thing they have to do.

“It helps when you get a bit of success and a couple of wins.”

Brighton’s previous three meetings with Palace have contained late twists.

Albion twice salvaged 1-1 draws in south London thanks to late equalisers, while Christian Benteke earned the Eagles a smash-and-grab 2-1 win on their last visit to Sussex.

Potter, who is yet to taste victory in his five clashes with his club’s fiercest foes, admits Neal Maupay’s last-gasp leveller just under four months ago will live long in the memory.

“You could see the feeling from our supporters there,” he said.

“It was only a 1-1, but it felt like a really significant moment, it felt like a big moment.

“I’m pretty sure if you asked the supporters that were there watching the game, they’d probably think it was one of their best moments ever watching a football match because of the context of the game, because it was Palace, Selhurst Park, all that sort of stuff.”

Ninth-placed Brighton sit four points and three places above their opponents, having played one game fewer.

The Seagulls will be without captain Lewis Dunk (knee) and midfielder Enock Mwepu (hamstring) and Yves Bissouma (international duty).

Defender Adam Webster is fit to return, while Ecuador midfielder Moises Caicedo will be included in their squad after being recalled from a loan spell at Belgian club Beerschot.

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