Graham Potter admits that Brighton’s current situation represents the most difficult period of his managerial career.
Struggling Brighton is entering the New Year just two points above the drop zone after a miserable 2020 which has brought in just five Premier League wins in 34 games.
Pressured Seagulls boss Potter previously managed Swedish club Ostersunds and championship club Swansea before moving to Sussex to replace Chris Hughton before last season.
Having taken just 13 points in 16 matches this quarter, he admits that the results have not been good enough and accepts that criticism is inevitable.
“If you don’t win football games, it’s harder to convince people that you’re on the right track, and I can understand that,” Potter said.
“We took over a team that finished with 36 points, and we took them to 41 in the first season, changed the style of play,” added a few young players.
“But you want to keep improving and in terms of results, as it is, they haven’t improved, so you can understand the criticisms.
“We have ambition and, if you watch our games this season, we came into games believing and thinking that we can win any game. But we didn’t. you are not lucky you may find yourself in this situation.
“It’s football at the highest level, with the pressure, with the challenge; challenge isn’t a bad thing – just because it’s the toughest time in my career doesn’t mean it’s bad.
“I am really lucky and grateful to have the opportunity to know myself and to go through a difficult time.”
Brighton remain in a precarious situation after finishing 2020 with the 1-0 home loss on Tuesday to Arsenal.
The loss meant the Seagulls – who host Wolves on Saturday – ended the calendar year with a lone home success after 17 top-level matches, losing eight and drawing eight.
Potter admits the alarming toll is untenable.
“I can’t say anything other than it’s not a nice statistic – there is no defense,” Potter added. “We don’t like it at all.
“We have drawn a lot of games that we think we should have won.
“If you look at the games we’ve lost – Manchester United twice, Chelsea, Arsenal, Liverpool, Manchester City, Southampton and Crystal Palace – we’ve played these teams without fans, which of course is another factor.
“But the reality is we haven’t won enough at home and that’s not good. I accept that we want to improve and we have to improve.”