Sheffield United boss Paul Heckingbottom believes that Brighton and Hove Albion’s success is a reward for several years of impressive work on and off the pitch.
Heckingbottom takes the Blades to the Amex tomorrow (Sunday 12 November) to face a Seagulls team fresh from a Europa League win over Ajax on Thursday (9 November).
The victory was a result heralded by Brighton boss Roberto De Zerbi as the best in the club’s history.
Given their rise up the ladder in English football in recent seasons, the Seagulls are often cited as an example for other clubs looking to establish themselves in the Premier League.
Heckingbottom said: “They are a good side. You can see everything they have done on and off the pitch over the last few years has got them to this point where they are competing in Europe.
“They were excellent against Ajax. We know it’s going to be a tough, tough game. They have grown things. The owner takes credit for that.
“They seem to have got a lot of decisions right and that investment has helped them grow things.
“This has been a long time coming. Back when they were bottom of the Championship, you see what they have spent on their stadium, the training ground, the academy, the women’s team, the Under-21s.
“They have spent fortunes and fortunes and fortunes and they deserve to be where they are.
“They have been willing to invest to grow things but they have made a hell of a lot of good decisions as well. Everyone would want to follow what they are doing.”