Ex-Newcastle midfielder Kevin Nolan has this warning for Rafa Benitez's side ahead of Brighton clash

Kevin Nolan playing for Newcastle.
Kevin Nolan playing for Newcastle.

Newcastle United fans know all about their old manager Chris Hughton.

Hughton, who is now in charge at Brighton, won the Championship title with the Magpies in 2010, and will come face to face with his former club when the Seagulls visit St James' Park on Saturday afternoon.

Kevin Nolan was the heartbeat of Hughton's promotion-winning side, and has warned Rafa Benítez's men they should expect a difficult game this weekend.

"I played for Chris and I saw him last week - we were at a dinner together - and I'm delighted how well he's done," Nolan told nufc.co.uk.

"He was a fantastic manager for me and it was quite sad to see him go when he did and how he did, but it's in the past now and we move on.

"You see what he's done since he left Newcastle, and Brighton are certainly not going to make it easy for Newcastle on Saturday."

Nolan believes Newcastle will record their first victory of the season against Brighton - but thinks they may have to be patient against a 'well-drilled' side.

"Chris will know that if they keep them quiet for 20-30 minutes, and you get to half time and the lads haven't broken the deadlock yet, then you might hear some grumbles and some players might start feeling the effects of that," added Nolan.

"He'll have his team well-drilled and ready and it should be a tense affair - but one I think there'll be plenty of drama in, I imagine."

A boyhood Liverpool fan, Nolan, who recently left the managerial position at Notts County, is a huge admirer of Benitez.

And Newcastle's former skipper believes the Spaniard is doing a great job on Tyneside, despite the team's winless start to the season.

"I think he's done a fantastic job since he's gone in there," said Nolan.

"He's done really well for the club - I think he's taken to the Geordies in a way you very rarely see foreign managers do, and you can see the love the Geordie faithful have got for him.

"But he's got to just make sure he gets his lads up for the challenge because it's going to be a tough one, as it always is in the Premier League. You never get any easy fixtures.

"It's always the same with Newcastle; whether they're at the bottom of the league or top of the league, something's always going on and it's crazy to think the headlines that it creates, but what he's got to do it try to keep the lads' feet on the ground and keep them concentrated on the most important thing: getting three points on Saturday."