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Brighton midfielder Stephens seeks promotion history

Dale Stephens is out of contract at Brighton in the summer Credit: PA

Dale Stephens has urged his Brighton team-mates to write their names into the club's history books.

The Championship leaders will end a 34-year exile from the top flight if they better Huddersfield's result on Monday, with a win practically guaranteeing their ascent due to superior goal difference.

Chris Hughton's side host struggling Wigan while the Terriers go to Derby in the late kick-off, potentially forcing Brighton to wait to discover their fate.

Their Premier League chance comes 20 years after they almost dropped out of the Football League and were homeless, playing at Gillingham, when their old Goldstone Ground home was sold.

And after the tales of woe, which include playing at old athletics ground the Withdean Stadium, midfielder Stephens wants to create some different stories.

Hughton's men are four points clear of second-placed Newcastle in the race for the title after a 2-0 win at Wolves on Friday.

The Magpies dropped points with a 1-1 draw with Leeds but Stephens, who is out of contract in the summer, insisted Brighton must focus on promotion before clinching the title.

We get told about [the old stadium] a lot! I played against Brighton at the Withdean for Oldham so I know a bit about the history.

We are reminded about it by the fans and everyone wants us to get promoted to take this group of players to the next level.

If we do it it'll be a massive achievement for everyone. It'll be fully deserved. If we do it it'll go down in the history of the football club and I'll be proud to be a part of it.

I'd like to get promoted first, the aim of this season from the outset was to gain promotion and that still remains our number-one target.

This league is so unpredictable it can certainly bite you. We look at the next game, we have put ourselves in a really good position and we want to capitalise on where we are.

Monday is the next opportunity to do so.

– Dale Stephens


Brighton in a strong position - manager Hughton

Hughton's side are inching closer toward promotion Credit: PA

Brighton boss Chris Hughton admitted his men had "put themselves in a good position" after their 3-1 home victory over Birmingham took them back to the top of the Championship table with six games remaining.

The Seagulls hold a 10-point advantage over third-placed Reading after goals from Glenn Murray, Tomer Hemed and Uwe Huenemeier gave them their 10th home win out of 12 in the league.

Hughton felt Brighton had deserved to win their last two games but warned against complacency in the remaining matches, while also praising Murray for reaching the 20-goal milestone this term.

We have put ourselves in a good position.

I would have been absolutely delighted had someone offered me this at the start of the season.

But there are too many good teams; Huddersfield have two games in hand and Reading are going well.

We have got a group of players who are desperate to do well.

The team have stayed together and have had drive to get promotion. We have deserved to win our last two games when not at our best.

Glenn has been a very good acquisition for us. The team have been good for Glenn and Glenn has been good for the team.

When we took Glenn we knew he was someone who scores goals, and he scores different types of goals.

– Chris Hughton
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