Hughton avoids Dunk for England debate - instead heaps yet more praise on Albion defender

Lewis Dunk. Picture by PW Sporting Pics
Lewis Dunk. Picture by PW Sporting Pics

Chris Hughton has heaped yet more praise on in-form Brighton & Hove Albion centre-back Lewis Dunk - but stopped short of wading into the debut whether he should have been selected for England.

The defender has been one of the stand-out performers in Brighton's impressive start to the Premier League season, playing a huge part in their organised backline.

The uncapped 25-year-old has been talked up by plenty of pundits and in the media as being worthy of a call-up for the England squad for the friendlies against Germany and Brazil.

But Dunk has been overlooked by international boss Gareth Southgate, who has opted to call up Harry Maguire, Michael Keane and Joe Gomez – picked as a centre-back despite playing as a full-back for Liverpool this season – to his depleted squad.

Hughton has avoided spelling out his thoughts, but instead praised his player highly. He said: "The only thing I can say, when it comes to international selection for any of our players, that it is the responsibility of the England manager. All I can talk about is how well he has done for us - and he has been outstanding.

"Credit to Lewis as I think even before my time here, he has got better and better as each season has gone. Some of the parts of his game he needed to improve on, he has done that.

"He has only done that by hardwork himself. I can only speak of how well he has done for us and he has been excellent for us."