By Marc Isaacs
(Reuters) - Brighton and Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton believes his side were given a harsh lesson in their 5-1 defeat by Liverpool and feels they are the best team they have played against since gaining promotion to the Premier League.
After keeping the visitors at bay for the opening half hour, the Brighton defence suffered a major lapse of concentration as they conceded two goals in 74 seconds that put Juergen Klopp's men on the way to another empathic victory.
Brighton's last victory at the Amex Stadium came at the end of September, but Hughton was full of praise for the day's opponents.
"The biggest disappointment is you stay in the game for 30 minutes and we had the best chance. Within two minutes we are 2-0 down and we concede disappointingly from a corner," Hughton said.
"These are all the things we spoke about before the game. At 2-0 down it becomes very difficult to get back in the game.
"They are the best side we have faced. You have got to have a level of performance to stay in the game. They were very good and gave us a harsh lesson today. We were below the levels we have been showing."
Brighton have so far shown they can compete in the top flight with 17 points from 15 games and Hughton hopes they can get their season back on track with a positive result against Huddersfield Town next weekend.
"These results can happen. We are not the only team of our level who have been on the back of a big defeat this season. Some have had two or three," he said.
"It is a hard one at the moment and it will be a tough week. But you need a response and I am sure we will get that from the players."
(Reporting by Marc Isaacs; Editing by Christian Radnedge)