Big match focus: PNE v Brighton

Brighton and Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton

Brighton and Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton

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MEET THE BOSS: CHRIS HUGHTON

The former Tottenham defender celebrated his second anniversary in charge of Brighton on New Year’s Eve.

He previously managed Norwich, Birmingham City and Newcastle and has earned a reputation as one of the most talented managers in the country. Hughton, 58, guided Newcastle to promotion to the Premier League in 2010 and took Birmingham to the play-offs in the Championship.

MEET THE REF: SIMON HOOPER

The Wiltshire referee will take charge of Preston for the third time this season when Brighton make the trip to Deepdale. Mr Hooper was in the middle for the 2-1 win at Bristol City last month and also when North End beat Bournemouth 3-2 in the League Cup in September.

Last season, he had the whistle for PNE’s 3-0 win at Charlton. Mr Hooper has also refereed Brighton twice this season, against Rotherham at home and Wigan away.

THIS WEEK...

53 years ago: On January 13, 1964, North End beat Nottingham Forest 1-0 at Deepdale in a third-round 
FA Cup replay. Howard Kendall scored the winner, the first game at the 
City Ground having ended in a 0-0 draw. It set them 
on the road to the Wembley, with Preston reaching the final.

30 years ago: Preston won 1-0 against Middlesbrough in the FA Cup at Ayresome Park on January 10, 1987. It was something of a shock, with Boro a division ahead of John McGrath’s men at the time. Ronnie Hildersley scored the winner with a superb shot from 25 yards 
to the delight of 2,500 PNE fans.

21 years ago: On January 13, 1996, the Lilywhites won 3-2 against Plymouth Argyle at Deepdale. Simon Davey, Ian Bryson and Lee Cartwright found the net in a thrilling game.