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Thursday 8 December 2016

Championship tougher than ever: Hughton

Brighton manager Chris Hughton
Brighton manager Chris Hughton

Chris Hughton might be sitting on top of the Sky Bet Championship with Brighton, but he believes the division is as strong as it has ever been.

The Seagulls head into the weekend four points clear at the summit, but with a handful of talented sides waiting to take advantage of any slips.

Today's opponents Reading are within striking distance of the play-offs themselves, and with big Capital One Cup wins in midweek for Sheffield Wednesday, Hull and Middlesbrough the field is wide open.

"The Championship itself has got better from top to bottom and it's now much closer," admitted Hughton.

"Our last two games were against Bristol City and Preston - both teams that are in the lower half of the division - but you wouldn't think so because of the quality in their teams.

"I just think it's getting tighter. Reading will be a tough game. They have bought very well in the summer, are very strong in their offensive options and are a very decent team."

Second-placed Hull visit an MK Dons side hovering just above the relegation zone.

The Tigers have won their last three fixtures, including a penalty shoot-out success over Leicester in the cup.

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