ALBION boss Chris Hughton has urged his players to stay in control of their emotions in the derby cauldron of Selhurst Park.

The Seagulls visit arch-rivals Crystal Palace tomorrow with both sides desperate for the points to ease their Premier League relegation worries.

Albion have lost Davy Propper and Anthony Knockaert to red cards in their last four matches and Hughton has told his players the best chance of getting a result is to divorce themselves from the intensity of the occasion.

Hughton, a veteran of the North London rivalry between his old club Spurs and Arsenal, said: “You have to be in and around it to understand it.

“It’s not a classic type of derby, it’s one that means more to both clubs than to people outside it. But over the time I’ve been here I’ve got to learn more about what it means.

“If you look at it what it means to our supporters and how they ramp it up then it’s a derby game and it’s our derby game. We need to make sure we have a level of control in the game, as you would do in any derby game.

“Where you know the atmosphere is going to be as it is then it’s important you have players who play with a level of control.

“In derby games it can be more ferocious, challenges can be fiercer and heavier. It’s an emotion which is built up by the crowd.

“You have to divorce yourself from that and play in a controlled way. If we are going to get a result that’s the best way.”

The first league clash between the teams at the Amex in November did not live up to the hype, ending in a drab 0-0 draw.

Hughton said: “I think probably the nature of the stadium is different. Ours is a little bit more open.

“Sometimes we are all expecting something and sometimes by the time the game comes it ends up being flatter than everybody’s expectations.

“So the answer is I don’t know (how intense it will be). It is a derby game, a game that means an awful lot points wise and where we are, position in the league.

“We are obviously both desperate to get points, so there is a lot riding on the game.”