Gus Poyet praises Brighton's La Liga signings on Revista

Poyet: praised his La Liga signings

Poyet: praised his La Liga signings

Brighton's fine Championship campaign has been aided by influential players from La Liga, Gus Poyet told Revista.

The Seagulls boss recruited five Spaniards and an Argentine from Spain's top flight this season to boost his South Coast squad and the move has paid dividends.

"If you want to get a player of the quality of Bruno - who has played in the Champions League - the price of an English player would be impossible for us."

Gus Poyet

Brighton sit fourth in England's second tier, poised to secure a play-off berth and a shot at qualifying for the Premier League.

And Poyet believes the relatively cheap cost of importing Bruno, Inigo Calderon, David Lopez, Andrea Orlandi, Leonardo Ulloa and Vicente, coupled with their technical abilities, has made them first-class signings.

"It was common sense," said Poyet of his decision to sign the six players who have since scored 40 per cent of Brighton's league goals and been responsible for 49 per cent of their assists.

"I want my teams to treat the ball well, like a person; you need to make sure the ball wants to be with you, like a friend. You can see all the teams in Spain do this. They have this understanding.

"If you want to get a player of the quality of Orlandi or Bruno - who has played in the Champions League - the price of an English [equivalent] player would be impossible for us [to afford].

"So, you put everything in the balance - they play the football I want and they are cheaper."

Knowledge

Poyet enjoyed a seven-year stay at Real Zaragoza during his playing career and, as a result, is fully aware of the talent available in Spanish football.

His knowledge of the game there helped him secure the signature of Argentine striker Ulloa from second-tier club Almeria during the January transfer window.

The forward had been offered to Premier League clubs but it was Poyet's Championship side who landed the hitman, who has netted eight goals in 14 appearances for Brighton.

"We followed him, we knew he'd be perfect for us and England," said Poyet.

"The problem was he didn't have a European passport and we had to wait. Other teams probably thought 'maybe he's not ready' or this or that.

"I went to watch a game, Numancia against Almeria. It was 0-0 and freezing cold - but I knew that he was the player for us.

"And when you follow a player like that and get a chance to get him... well, he's proved to me it was right to get him. He's a Premiership player."