Brighton and Hove Albion have finally got promoted to the Premier League after 34 years without playing top flight football.
Despite the financial strength of Newcastle, Brighton have been the most consistent team this season and are fully deserving of their promotion as well as their soon to be confirmed title victory.
All the credit in the world deserves to go to Chris Hughton who has done a magnificent job at Brighton. Taking over with them battling to avoid relegation three years ago, he soon turned them into a force to be reckoned with in the second tier.
Last season they fell out of the automatic promotion places at the final hurdle before losing in the play-off semi-finals to Sheffield Wednesday.
But this year Hughton’s player’s character can not be questioned after managing to pull away from second place Newcastle, with Brighton currently seven points above The Magpies with just three league games remaining.
Ever since their new stadium opened at the start of the 2011/12 season, Brighton have been a club ready-made for the Premier League with brilliant facilities and structure behind the scenes.
They have been the best side in the Championship this season certainly in terms of cohesiveness, unlike Newcastle for example who have at times relied upon their standout players rather than their team playing as a unit.
Brighton have the best defence in the league, conceding just 36 goals, and with top quality individuals such as Anthony Knockaert, Glenn Murray and Dale Stephens, they have players in all areas of the pitch that are ready to make the step up to help their team perform well in the Premier League.
It is vital for the newly promoted Brighton that they keep the same core group of players together who have made them so successful in recent campaigns.
A few additions are necessary to add some extra experience of the Premier League into the squad, but Brighton already have a number of players good enough for the top flight.
These players deserve the chance to play at the top level and it has been proved by Burnley and Bournemouth in recent years that playing the majority of the same players from your promotion campaign in the next season can be instrumental in maintaining team spirit and good performances.
Should the club continue to stick with Chris Hughton who has handled them so well up to now and that their players remain together in times of hardship which is bound to come for any team, they will compete well against their higher quality opponents and prove that they are not out of their depth in the Premier League.
Promotion for Brighton is well-overdue. For a side that have been building for the Premier League for over five years, it is great to see them get promoted, especially given how long they have been without top flight football and considering how brilliant a job Chris Hughton has done to help to transform the club into one that is Premier League calibre from top to bottom.
Featured Image Credit: Gareth Fuller