Hughton backs Irish pairing for Bright' futures
Brighton's Waterford-born pairing Jayson Molumby and Dessie Hutchinson received a huge boost from their manager Chris Hughton to make a long-term impact at the Amex Stadium.
Both midfielders were handed their chance to impress Hughton in Tuesday night's League Cup clash at Bournemouth, and despite a 1-0 defeat, the former Irish international defender insisted he had no qualms about playing his academy players.
Molumby (18) and Hutchinson (20) both made their first starts for the Seagulls, with Josh King's extra-time goal proving decisive in a tight game.
"You work hard every day in the under-23s and under-18s to be given that opportunity in the first team by the gaffer and the club," said Molumby.
"For him to show trust in myself and Dessie is brilliant, because it means a lot to us.
"I know Dessie very well, we go way back and he's from the same county in Ireland as me. I train with him every day and play with him most matchdays for the under-23s, so we've got a good understanding. I just want to do them proud and do my best. It's been very good, everybody has just been blown away by me and Dessie because we're from the same place.
"It's a big deal for any young Irish lad coming over, so I just want to do them proud and do my best."
Hughton took the positives from defeat at the Cherries, not least the accomplished displays of his rookies.
"It was a tough day, with the quality that Bournemouth have got, but I was really pleased for both of them," Hughton said.
"It's an important part of the game. When I first came to the club, it was something that was stressed upon me - how they value the academy that we have."