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Page last updated at 06:43 GMT, Thursday, 25 September 2008 07:43 UK

Hughes embarrassed by City defeat

Mark Hughes
Hughes was far from happy with his team's display against Brighton

Mark Hughes said his players lacked professionalism after his Manchester City millionaires were humiliated by hard-up Brighton in the Carling Cup.

City went home with some thinking to do after the League One side came through on penalties after securing a dramatic 2-2 draw at the Withdean Stadium.

Hughes said: "There is a lot of focus on us at the moment but I don't know if I'm more embarrassed than angry.

"We should have been professional enough to have seen it through."

Brighton's Dutch keeper Michel Kuipers saved Michael Ball's penalty in the shoot-out - allowing Matt Richards to coolly convert his spot-kick and spark a pitch invasion by the delighted Brighton support.

While Brighton have to make do with a much-maligned temporary stadium built round an athletics track, City have just sealed a 200million takeover by the Abu Dhabi United Group.

I'm not going to crow about beating the so-called richest team in the world

Brighton boss Micky Adams

Hughes insisted he had no regrets about leaving out both 32.4million Brazil star Robinho and 9million winger Shaun Wright-Phillips after Brighton bounced back from a Gelson Fernandes strike just after the hour.

Glenn Murray dramatically equalised in the 89th minute and on-loan substitute Joe Anyinsah fired Brighton in front in extra time.

Remarkably, there was still time for Stephen Ireland to level matters again but the shoot-out went the Seagulls' way.

"We are disappointed because we had a strong enough team out there to have won this game and I thought we looked very comfortable in the second half," added Hughes.

"But we missed chances after taking the lead. Once it goes to penalties it can go either away so we mustn't dwell on this result but you never want to go out of any competition.

"At least we were able to give game-time to some players who needed it - and to be honest the need was pretty evident at times."

Hughes refused to blame the antiquated conditions at the Withdean Stadium, saying: "It's similar to several places I've been in Europe and the players should be able to cope with it."


Meanwhile, Brighton boss Micky Adams said it was the criticism his team took for losing 1-0 at home to nine-man Walsall last Saturday that fired them up for the shock win which earns a third-round clash at home to Derby.

"The boys were well up for it and needed to do something big after the reception they got after Walsall," he said.

"I'm not going to crow about beating the so-called richest team in the world because as a player and a manager I've been on the wrong end of these type of results.

"All I can say is that my boys were spot on for their endeavour and their pride and they deserve all the plaudits for a fantastic response."

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see also
Brighton 2-2 Man City (5-3 pens)
24 Sep 08 |  League Cup
Wednesday's football photos
24 Sep 08 |  Football
Man City buyers complete takeover
23 Sep 08 |  Man City

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