Brighton & Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton is confident his side can handle the busy schedule the Seagulls face to close the calendar year.
Brighton are in the top eight of the Premier League table and the boss cites the squad's character and ability as to why they will be able to perform in the final games of the 2017 season.
"It's a busy period coming up"
The run of games to conclude the year begin Monday with the visit of Stoke City, which had Hughton saying"It’s a busy period coming up and maybe some will deal with it better than others.
“But my gut feeling is that we will cope, because every player will have gone through periods where you have to play a lot of games in a short space of time during their careers.
“It’s in a different division now and it’s going to be a period where we’ll need the whole squad and as many players as fit as possible.”
"We've always taken one game at a time throughout my time here"
After recording a vital 1-0 win at Swansea City, many pointed to that game as one that could have a bigger impact on Brighton's season, but Hughton isn't looking at it like that:
“I don’t think you can afford to target taking points from specific matches.
“We’ve always taken one game at a time throughout my time here and it’s always been that way – putting out the correct team we think can win each game.
“We’ll need the whole squad over this period and the one thing we have to try and do is the keep the levels up throughout".
Back-to-back road wins "give us a lot of gratification"
Before the win at Swansea, the Seagulls recorded a 3-0 hammering of West Ham, prompting Hughton to say “We’re on the back of two away wins, which is something that gives us a lot of gratification and to now get back-to-back wins would show the level we’re playing at and our capabilities as a squad".
Exoanding on those thoughts, he also stated that those wins also "the sort of things that can give us great confidence and build on the belief we already have this season.”
Hughton says Stoke "are the model for top-flight stability"
Monday's opponents are in their tenth season in the top flight and are the model for which all clubs, especially ones like Brighton, look to in terms of sustaining longevity and success in the Premier League.
“Stoke are one of the model clubs for top-flight stability that you have to look at.
“But they would have gone through some difficult seasons as well, even after the good work Tony (Pulis) did there – but they’re now a very established top-flight side, there’s no doubt about that.
“When you speak at the start of a season and you look at potential clubs that can go down and might be in danger, they’re never really mentioned, so they’re a great example for a club like ours.”