Hughton returns to his West Ham roots!


Chris Hughton

Brighton boss Chris Hughton returns to his roots tonight declaring himself  “very much a West Ham lad.”

Although spending most of his career with Spurs the former Hammer – having spent to years at Upton Park in the 90s says: ” We ended up getting promotion from the old Second Division to the First Division, so it was a really enjoyable period of time.

“Billy Bonds was the manager. He was not only a great manager but a great individual.

“I remember Billy allowing me to do a couple of sessions there and it was a stage of my career when I was very much thinking about coaching.”

“My parents still live in Upton Park, so I was born and brought up very close to the stadium.

“We take players now at seven years of age. In those days it was generally 13-14 and it was Spurs that came in, took a group of us that had been playing in the district of Newham side.

“I think there was something like five of us that went to Spurs trials and I ended up staying there.

“My upbringing was different. I was always playing. Although my dad is very much now a football fan I didn’t have a family background of football.

“I think I went to West Ham once, a family friend took me. I was a football fanatic but always playing. I never really had an allegiance to any team. But I’m very much a West Ham lad.”

“It was an important time,” Hughton said: “I’d had a very long career at Tottenham and very successful in the first part of that.

He added: “It will be my first time (at the stadium). I know that particular area very well, around Stratford and the changes in Stratford over these last years. It’s unrecognisable for us that were brought up around the area but it’s happened for the right reasons.

Share this article

Hugh Southon is a lifelong Iron and the founding editor of ClaretandHugh. He is a national newspaper journalist of many years experience and was Bobby Moore's 'ghost' writer during the great man's lifetime. He describes ClaretandHugh as "the Hammers daily newspaper!"

Follow on Twitter @hughsouthon