Simon Rusk Brighton and Hove Albion under-23s manager

Brighton's priority to reach final

Brighton & Hove Albion preview ahead of the Parafix Sussex Senior Challenge Cup Semi-Final

The second Semi-Final of the Parafix Sussex Senior Challenge Cup is due to take place on Tuesday 13 March 2018 between Brighton & Hove Albion and Pagham.

Brighton & Hove Albion vs. Pagham
Parafix Sussex Senior Challenge Cup Semi-Final
Date: Tuesday 13 March 2018
Kick-off: 7.15pm
Venue: Sussex County FA, Culver Road, Lancing, West Sussex, BN15 9AX 

Brighton and Hove Albion under-23s are the defending champions of the Parafix Sussex Senior Challenge Cup after three quick consecutive goals in extra-time saw off Crawley Town – who have already confirmed their place in the final again this year.

Although it is Brighton’s priority to once again reach the final, Rusk is not looking ahead to the final and is solely focusing on Tuesday’s semi-final against Pagham. 

“First and foremost, I’m not really looking ahead to the Crawley game at the Amex, but all I would say is that it would be an important final and there’s a lot to play for, but we must beat Pagham before that.”

Simon Rusk, an ex-Crawley Town player is in his third season in charge of the Brighton under-23s and the squad are having a strong season to-date. At present, they are sitting third in the Premier League 2 Division 2 table, having gone nine games unbeaten and not conceding a goal in four of those. 

Moreover, with just three league games left to play, Rusk has aspirations of reaching and winning the league play-off to gain promotion to Division 1.

The Seagulls boss insists that they will treat Pagham with the upmost respect and ensure that they will be fully prepared to secure a spot in the final. Rusk said: “We’ll do our homework on them because it’s a game we want to win.

“We’ll know a decent amount about them as a side and will implement a game plan off the back of that.”

He also admits that the cup ties have been challenging and will not be expecting any different from their semi-final opponents, Pagham: “We’ve got a tough semi-final and they have got there for the same reason we have, they’ve shown capability to win games.

“All of the sides we’ve played have offered a different type of challenge, and I don’t just mean the obvious ones. It’s easy to talk about the playing surfaces, but some of the county league sides that we’ve faced have got players who have played at a decent level of football.”

The Seagulls head coach acknowledges that there are many different levels and tiers within football and highlights that playing a variety of teams is an important learning curve for his team to understand and appreciate.

“The ties have been very different to what we usually face in the under-23 league, but that’s great – anything that takes the boys into slightly different environments and out of their comfort zone is a good thing.”

Entry prices for the Semi-Final are as follows:
£10.00 Adult (17+)
£5.00 Concession (65+ and students with valid student ID card)
£3.00 Child (16 and under)

For further details about the Parafix Sussex Senior Challenge Cup please contact Competitions:

T: 01903 753547