DEAN HOYLE looked ahead to Saturday’s home Championship clash with Brighton and said: “They’ve set an example for us to follow.”
Town will always have a place in Albion’s history after being the last side to visit the Withdean Stadium the season before last.
Brighton were beaten 3-2 by goals from Benik Afobe (2) and Danny Ward, but had already won promotion from League I.
Town missed out in the play-offs, but went on to join the South coast club in the Championship thanks to last season’s Wembley success against Sheffield United.
Now Simon Grayson’s men are sixth with Gus Poyet’s Albion, who finished 10th in their first campaign at the AMEX Stadium last season, just two places behind them.
Town are unbeaten in three and Brighton in four, and owner-chairman Hoyle said: “I’m really looking forward to the match.
“It’s not long since were playing each other in League I, and now both of us are up in the Championship and competing well.
“I’ve got a lot of time for Brighton and their chairman Tony Bloom, who like me is a local businessman and a lifelong supporter.
“He’s gone in and provided real impetus, with their move to a fantastic stadium being accompanied by promotion.
“Tony brought in Gus Poyet as manager, and he’s someone I admire as well. He can be controversial, but he’s honest and entertaining.
“Gus has built a good side and Brighton have established themselves in the Championship and have solid foundations, and that’s our objective.
“As I said earlier in the week, we want to finish as high up the table as we can, but the main objective for this season is to stay in the division.”
Town will hand a home debut to Reading loan signing Simon Church but remain without fellow striker James Vaughan, who will be sidelined for at least another fortnight with a thigh injury.
Brighton have a doubt over Wayne Bridge, the former England defender on loan from Manchester City, who is struggling with a calf problem.