Roberto De Zerbi’s Albion tenure has been described as “brief but beautiful” by a club legend.

De Zerbi is heading home after 89 games in charge.

He and the club decided to part ways on Friday evening and players were informed after training on Saturday before the club released a statement.

Glenn Murray told BBC Radio 5 Live: “I think the timing was a surprise, but it is actually quite nice.

“They both get to say goodbye to each other.

“He has been a fantastic manager for the club.

“People don’t take into consideration what he missed this season in the first European season.

“If you take a superb Alexis Mac Allister at Liverpool and Premier League record signing Moises Caicedo out of anyone's team, they would struggle to recover from that.

“Not only that, but he has lost Solly March and Kaoru Mitoma for a large part of the season and they are Brighton’s game changes.

“Unfortunately the club hasn’t got many of those.

“They are not blessed with that sort of quality everywhere. When you take those four midfielders out of any Premier League XI, I think what Roberto has done is absolutely exceptional.

“I totally can (understand his frustration). He is a football manager and, as someone who was involved in the game as a player, I wanted to progress my career as much as the team I was playing for.

“Unfortunately for Roberto, I think Brighton have got a long-term project.

“Tony Bloom has never been and never will be in any rush to play out the way he sees the club going and he won’t change that for any player or manager.

“He will see it as he feels is the best way to progress the football club.

“I can totally understand Roberto’s point of view. Sometimes as a manager you want to progress and win things, but sometimes that can be at a quicker rate than the club.”

Murray praised the way Bloom has guided the club through the ranks.

He added: “I can remember playing in the Championship with them, and everyone around the club was saying, ‘If they just put a little bit more money in, they will get in the Premier League’ but he didn’t, he did it his way, he did it slowly.

“He was methodical with what he did and he got there.

“Through being patient and methodical, he has created a football club that is a secure Premier League team.”

Murray said De Zerbi leaves the squad in a better place than he found it in.

He added: “When you look at Brighton you have got to give credit to them because they give the foundation to a manager to really go and express themselves.”