BOSS Chris Hughton believes Albion have rediscovered their mean streak.

They have gone almost three-and-a-half hours without conceding a goal in open play.

The 1-0 victory at home to Huddersfield was followed by the 2-1 derby success at Crystal Palace, the hosts' reply coming from the penalty spot.

Hughton regards the defensive improvement as evidence of Albion resuming the resilience they are renowned for after a leaky period.

He said: "I think so and hope so. It's a long, hard season and I keep referring to clubs of our level.

"It's hard to sustain it week, in and week out and for each of these players there are going to be highs and lows, as there are for the team.

"But at the moment we are on the back of a clean sheet (Huddersfield) and, apart from a penalty, it would have been a clean sheet (Palace).

"We've defended really well and, hopefully, that is back to us being as solid as we can be."

Hughton has praised the contribution of Dale Stephens, who provided the pass for Anthony Knockaert's spectacular winner at Palace.

The midfielder divides opinion in the fanbase across social media, but Hughton said: "He doesn't divide opinion with me.

"He does what he does for us and he is a mainstay in the squad. You have to have different types of players."