Brighton’s summer signings come to the fore, and Yves Bissouma makes the biggest statement

One day, the world will cease to provide any more superlatives for the job that Chris Hughton is doing at Brighton right now.

On their return to the Premier League last season, the 59-year-old guided the club to a 15th place finish, when many had expected them to go straight back down to the Championship.

Now, after their 3-1 derby win over Crystal Palace, the Seagulls are sitting in the top-half of the top tier of English football, and it was Hughton’s summer signings in particular who shone on Tuesday evening.

Brighton manager Chris Hughton before the match

The home side went ahead through a Glenn Murray penalty after 24 minutes, before Shane Duffy’s red card and Murray’s injury forced Hughton to make two first half changes.

After Duffy’s sending off, the Brighton boss brought on Leon Balogun, a free signing from Mainz 05 during the summer, and the 30-year-old scored with his very first touch as he fired in on the half-volley from a corner.

Brighton fans were in dreamland though when another summer acquisition, striker Florin Andone who had come on for Murray, ran 40 yards down the left-hand side, beating James Tomkins and firing past Wayne Hennessey to put his side 3-0 up in the first-half.

However, despite the two goalscorers, there was one new face who shone above any other on the night.

Central midfielder Yves Bissouma put in an all-round performance that proved just why Hughton spent around £15m to bring him in from Lille in July.

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The 22-year-old completed 89 per cent of his passes on the night, one of which was a key pass to create a goalscoring opportunity. However, he also dug in deep and provided an excellent shield for his back four, making four clearances and an incredible nine tackles throughout the 90 minutes.

A Mali international with 14 caps, Bissouma looks like he could have that touch of class needed to take the Seagulls to the next level.

Hughton was certainly backed by his board in the summer, as the club made 13 signings at a cost of over £60m in total. Bringing together this many new faces though would be a difficult task for any manager, but the Brighton boss has his team playing brilliantly right now.

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