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Sami Hyypiä Named Brighton and Hove Albion Manager After Bayer Leverkusen Spell

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Longtime Liverpool fan favorite Sami Hyypia lost his job at Bayer Leverkusen in the spring, but now he's back in England at the helm of Championship side Brighton & Hove Albion.

Adam Pretty

Sami Hyypiä is a name many Liverpool fans remember fondly, with the big Finnish defender a part of many memorable Liverpool moments in his decade at the club. While at Anfield, Hyypiä helped the club win two FA Cups, two League Cups, and a UEFA Cup. All of that pales in comparison, though, to that famous night in Istanbul, when Hyypiä helped Liverpool overturn a 3-0 AC Milan lead and win the Champions League in 2005.

After his time in Liverpool ended in 2009, Hyypiä played for two years at Bayer Leverkusen, and joined their coaching staff after he decided it was time to hang up his boots. After a year in training, he was appointed manager of the club in 2012, alongside Sascha Lewandowski in an unusual arrangement. Despite Leverkusen experiencing success and quality play under his guidance, Hyypiä was terminated from his role in April after Leverkusen crashed out of the Champions League in the round of 16 and losing heavily to Paris Saint-Germain in the process.

Some Liverpool fans had hoped that he would return to Liverpool and join Brendan Rodgers' staff as a defensive coach, but Hyypiä deserved another shot at management, and that's exactly what he's gotten. After an extensive search, Championship side Brigton & Hove Albion have appointed Hyypiä as their new manager today, with both parties expressing excitement at the prospect of the move.

Brighton have been pushing for promotion for the last few years, falling short each time. They finished sixth this past season before falling to Derby County 6-2 on aggregate in the first playoff round, leading now-former manager Oscar Garcia to resign. The season before, they finished fourth and were runaway favorites to win the promotion playoff, but lost to Crystal Palace before sacking Gus Poyet. Hopefully Hyypiä finds more success and longevity in the role than his predecessors.

Best of luck to you, Sami. I'm sure every Liverpool fan is hoping for you to get Brighton up in the Premier League in a hurry.