BRIGHTON today sacked Chris Hughton as their manager - resulting in the odds on the former Republic of Ireland defender taking over at Celtic being slashed.

Brighton won just three of their last 23 league games, and none of their final nine, and finished 17th in the Premier League table.

Former Newcastle United, Birmingham City and Norwich City manager Hughton joined Brighton in December 2014.

He led the club into the Premier League for the first time in their history in in 2017 and then to 15th spot in their first season back in the top flight.

Hughton, who contracted until 2021, also took Brighton to the FA Cup semi-final this season, where they lost 1-0 to Manchester City.

The former Republic of Ireland defender and assistant manager quickly saw his odds on being appointed by the Parkhead club cut to 6-1.

He is now the third favourite to take over from Brendan Rodgers on a permanent basis behind Neil Lennon and Davie Moyes.

Brighton chairman Tony Bloom said: "Our run of three wins from 23 Premier League matches put our status at significant risk.

"It is with that in mind, and the performances during that period, that I now feel it's the right time for a change.

"Undoubtedly, this has been one of the most difficult decisions I have had to make as chairman of Brighton, but ultimately one I have made due to how we struggled in the second half of the season.

"Chris will always be very fondly remembered by Albion staff and fans as one of our club's finest and most respected managers."