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BUMPY RIDE

Posted on 7 March 2006  - 12:00

Chris Hughton admits Sunday's encounter with Blackburn turned into anything but a smooth passage towards three points.

Chris Hughton admits Sunday's encounter with Blackburn turned into anything but a smooth passage towards three points.

After going 2-0 up we were pegged back before the break and Rovers levelled following a sustained period of pressure after the interval. Mido sealed the victory, but pulse rates were up, down and racing throughout the 90 minutes.

"Just a little bit!" reflected Chris with a smile. "Certainly at 2-0 it was good for us to be thinking about going in at half-time with that score. With the nature of the game and the good side Blackburn are, they managed to score before the break which, for them, was a good time and for us a very bad one.

"It gave them a bit of a lift and they were able to come out and play very well after hafl-time," added Chris, before offering a hint of how team talks are approached when a team has snatched that dreaded goal on the brink of the half-time whistle.

"The most important thing is to look to pick the players up as there is no doubt it can be quite deflating.

"You talk about the positives, the things that saw us go 2-0 up in the first place, the fact we were at home and our record there and the fact we are capable of finishing strongly.

"There are so many good and bad moments in a game, we are always grateful when we win but we are also aware that our second half performance wasn't the best. We still had enough quality to go on and win the game.

"You look at the big moments in the game and for them the biggest will have been managing to get the goal before half-time. For us it was getting the winning goal so soon after their equaliser.

"If there had been a longer period of time between the two, they would probably have sat back a bit more and made it difficult. It was a real big moment for us."