Brighton star Murray and Hughton in Christmas visit to children in hospital

Manager Chris Hughton and some of his Albion players visiting Blue Fin ward at Worthing Hospital
Manager Chris Hughton and some of his Albion players visiting Blue Fin ward at Worthing Hospital

Star striker Glenn Murray and Brighton manager Chris Hughton brought Christmas cheer to children in hospital on Tuesday.

Brighton and Hove Albion players and staff spent last Tuesday making their annual visits to the Worthing and Royal Alexandra hospitals.

Albion players Steve Sidwell, Markus Suttner and Dale Stephens during their visit

Albion players Steve Sidwell, Markus Suttner and Dale Stephens during their visit

Manager Hughton stressed the importance of making the trips to both hospitals at this time of year.

He said: “Visits like this are hugely important, and this has always been an event on the calendar that the players and staff have always looked forward to doing.

“It’s a difficult time of the year for the children to be here, and if the players and staff can put a smile on their faces by giving out a few presents, then it’s very much a worthwhile thing to.”

Hughton, Paul Nevin, Dale Stephens, Steve Sidwell, Markus Suttner and Laura Rafferty went to Worthing Hospital, while Glenn Murray, Jiri Skalak, Paul Trollope, Ben Roberts and Danielle Buet went to the Royal Alexandra in Brighton.

Hughton also explained how the hospital visits should lift the players’ spirits after the team’s 5-1 loss at home to Liverpool, and how the task of winning a football match can pale into insignificance.

He added: “Some of these children are only going to be here for a couple of days, whereas others have ongoing problems, and you know that they’re going to spend a lot of time in hospital over the coming years.

“It very much puts things into perspective. This is particularly the case for us, as we’re a little bit down after a heavy defeat at the weekend.

“The supporters understand that you can get a bad result when you play against one of the big teams, like what happened on Saturday.

“But what they expect is to see us do our best in every game and pick up as many points as we can - and that’s what we’ll always try to do.”