RE­LAXED UWE CAN STEPOUT OF THE SHADOW

The Football League Paper - - CHAMPIONSHIP - By Ross Law­son

UWE Hune­meier knows what it takes to get pro­moted to the top tier, and he is desperate to feel that rush again at Brighton.

The Ger­man de­fender earned pro­mo­tion to the Bun­desliga with un­fash­ion­able SC Pader­born 07 back in 2014 and is con­vinced that ex­pe­ri­ence will stand him in good stead.

Having come so close last sea­son, Brighton reach­ing the Pre­mier League this term would be far less of a shock than Pader­born’s suc­cess, but the 31-year-old is still keen to be part of his­tory.

“There’s noth­ing bet­ter than get­ting pro­moted,” said Hune­meier. “I’ve done it once with Pader­born and that was a big sur­prise.

“We’re now in a re­ally good po­si­tion. We came close last year and now we want to do it. I want to perform well, be part of the team and help us get to where we all want to be.”

Hune­meier has bat­tled a mus­cle tear and a frac­tured hand this sea­son, mean­ing his start in Brighton’s 2-0 win over Rother­ham in mid­week was just his sec­ond Championship ap­pear­ance of the cam­paign.

It came after Shane Duffy was ruled out for six weeks with a foot prob­lem – and the tow­er­ing cen­tre­back is now ready to push on.

“I’m happy with my fit­ness level and I’m feel­ing quite good,” added Hune­meier.

“I wasn’t in the team for a long, long time but I couldn’t blame any­one be­cause Dunky (Lewis Dunk) and Duffy have done so well.

“You have to be in the best shape, train well and that’s what I do all the time.

“I had to wait for the time when I’d be needed, so I’m quite happy to be back on the pitch now.

“It’s good for the team spirit that boys who hadn’t been play­ing stepped in against Rother­ham and per­formed well.

“That’s what you want to have as a team.”

CHANCE: Uwe Hune­meier

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