Brighton (H): Pre-match thoughts, team news & predicted line ups

While I’m not a fan of the ‘cup final’ comments before the game (it’s a bit early for that?!), this is surely Steve Bruce’s biggest game so far.

With our four games after this being Leicester (A), Man Utd (H), Chelsea (A) and Wolves (H), this feels like a crucial moment to get points on the board and our first home win of the season.

It won’t be easy, mind. Brighton have frustrated us at St James’ Park over the past two years, coming away with a 0-0 draw and 0-1 win in their last few visits, however I see this being a different sort of game this time around.

Graham Potter has totally changed their style of football, with their possession stats increasing by 12% and them playing much more on the front foot. With this in mind, I see there being a few goals in this one or at least being a slightly more open game which doesn’t involve Brighton putting 10 men behind the ball for the most part.

News that Andy Carroll and Saint-Maximin are fit enough to make the bench gives us all a welcome boost ahead of a game that promises to define our start to the season.

PART 1: Wexford Weekly - The Fanzone

Win and we’ll see it as a solid start considering the fixtures we’ve had, but lose and Bruce will be going into tough games with fans on his back and his team in the bottom three.

Predicted XI

Carroll and Saint-Maximin may be back, but both will be limited to substitute appearances at best, meaning a front three of Atsu, Joelinton and Almiron looks nailed on.

Atsu has been in brilliant form, while Joelinton is really starting to find his feet in a black and white shirt. As for Almiron, the pressure really is on him now to show a little bit more composure. He’s got pace to burn and incredible enthusiasm for the game, he just needs to slow things down at times, improve his decision making and that crucial final pass. If there’s anyone I’d love to see score in this one, it’s him. He badly needs a goal!

In midfield, Hayden is one of the first names on the team sheet these days and, with Sean Longstaff ruled out, Jonjo Shelvey looks set to start once again in what will be a huge chance for him to impress at St James’ Park. After all, if he can’t take these sort of games by the scruff of the neck and pull the strings, where does he fit in our plans moving forward?

At the back, Willems will continue at left wing-back in Ritchie’s absence. He’s clearly an attacking talent, but will need to stay switched on at the other end.

On our right hand side, Bruce may be tempted to start Manquillo down the other side following Krafth’s poor display at Anfield.

That said, it seems the Swede is his first choice option so I would not be surprised if he stuck with him. I would prefer to see Manquillo start, however. Not because I don’t rate Krafth – I think some criticism towards him has been harsh – but because Manquillo has done little wrong and looks more of a natural ‘wing-back’ who can help us get on the front foot here.

At centre-back, the reliable trio of Dummett, Lascelles and Schar will almost certainly start once again – although it’ll be interesting to see what Bruce does when Lejeune returns..

Preferred NUFC XI – (3-4-2-1) – Dubravka – Schar, Lascelles, Dummett – Krafth, Shelvey, Hayden, Willems – Almiron, Atsu – Joelinton.

Newcastle are 6/4 to beat Brighton in Saturday’s late kick off, which can be backed with the aid of online casino games.

The Opposition

Here’s a few ‘ones to watch’ in Graham Potter’s Brighton side:

Neal Maupay – The French striker completed a club record move to Brighton this summer (£20m) and has bagged 2 goals already this season. He scored 28 goals (and bagged 9 assists) for Brentford last season hasn’t looked out of place in the Premier League so far.

Dunk / Duffy / Burn – I’ve named all three Brighton centre-backs, with the towering trio being huge threats from set pieces and posing a tough physical challenge for Joelinton at the other end.

Pascal Gross – No player outside the top 6 has created more chances per 90 minutes than the German playmaker. He had a quiet last season but bagged 7 goals and 8 assists during his first year in the Premier League and looks to be one of the players who’s benefited from Graham Potters arrival.

Predicted Brighton XI – (4-3-3): Ryan – Duffy, Dunk, Burn – Montoya, Stephens, Propper, March – Gross, Murray, Maupay.

Team news

Andy Carroll and Allan Saint-Maximin have been passed fit and look set to take their place on the bench, however Sean Longstaff will miss out once again with an ankle injury.

Fabian Schar is fine, despite limping off at Liverpool last weekend, and DeAndre Yedlin is in contention after returning to training, but the game will come too soon for Matt Ritchie, Florian Lejeune and Dwight Gayle.

For Brighton, £18m winger Leandro Trossard will miss out once again, however right wing-back Martin Montoya is set to return.

Bernardo, Alireza JahanbakhshLeon Balogun and Jose Izquierdo are also expected to miss out for the visitors.


Brighton’s beat Watford 3-0 in their opening away game of the season and lost 4-0 at Man City in their next game on the road – but I’m told they could and should have scored a couple in that game.

They’re much more attack minded under Potter, but have only scored twice since the first day of the season and could give us a little bit more space at the other end of the pitch as a result – something the likes of Almiron and Atsu could thrive on.

I see them scoring, but feel we might just sneak our first win of the season here.

Prediction: Newcastle 2-1 Brighton

Howay the lads!

(Fancy writing for us? Send any articles/ideas over to us at [email protected] & we’ll get back to you!)

About Olly Hawkins

Olly has been a Junior Magpie from birth. As a season ticket holder and avid Newcastle United fan, he eats, sleeps and breathes all things NUFC!

33 thoughts on “Brighton (H): Pre-match thoughts, team news & predicted line ups

  1. Agree, would prefer Manquillo too Olly.
    Actually not sure about this one, depends which Newcastle turn up. We should win if we defend as we can and actually get some decent service to Joe .


  2. Olly, still having to repeatedly have to fill in my details even after clicking save details box.

    Puts you off posting


  3. I see there are 8300 tickets unsold. I think we’re at the start of a process tht will see regular attendances to be 35,000. Natural apathy.


  4. Watching Spurs/Leicester. I have no idea why I hate that “when the Spurs go marching in” song but I do. It makes me cringe every time I hear it.


  5. Well, I’m hoping we will get the win today, but not nailed on by any means … we tend to slip up on these “easier” games. Hoping big Andy comes on and gets himself a goal or two. ??


  6. You have to start worrying about Watford now. The press were all over the comeback against Spurs last week saying it was evidence of a turnaround. However, if a team gets beat 8-0 there are problems. I don’t care if it was by City, usually when that happens you really are staring at relegation.


  7. Not sure about this game as I haven’t seen much of Brighton. I do know they have won only 1 of their last 14 so we are in trouble if we don’t win today. Going for 2-1 to us and they score from a set piece.


  8. That was shocking, just fu.cking shocking… this is Brighton, not Liverpool… *** how are we…?
    Dreadful football. ?????


  9. This is going to be a long hard season, trying to find 3 teams worse than us is going to be a challenge.

    And… how many empty seats in SJP? ?. There in lies a story too. A lot of fans have had enough of this


  10. Shocking, just a fu.cking awful match. We only woke up in the last 5 mins. Way too late. Dreadful football and terrible result. We need to be winning those games at home. ☹️☹️?????


  11. Hard to explain that. Their little flicks and dinks all came off but that probably had something to do with us backing off them all of the time. They are not Man City. Shouldn’t really single out one player, but Shelvey had a terrible game. We improved when he went off.

    On the positive side, St Max looked lively.

    Carroll not fit and needs to be eased in, if we play him at all.

    Somehow, despite all their possession, Brighton didn’t really create many clear cut chances. A couple of goal mouth scrambles and that one cleared off the line. Apart from that they seemed to want to shoot from distance or pass it into the net.

    Mind you, if they had a decent striker we could have lost 3 nil.


  12. Why were we backing off them so much? They were creating loads of space but luckily not doing much with it. Our last man defending was good which, along with them not having a goalscorer, kept us in it. You really couldn’t say any of the defenders had a bad game but there was no outlet, as has been the case most of this season. But previously there was no outlet when we played Spurs, **** and Liverpool and not bloody Brighton.

    We had the lowest possession stat in the PL before this game and I am sure it just got worse. It is a dangerous game to just let the opposition have the ball all of the time and that must change. And it was bloody Brighton!!!!


  13. We also probably have to rest Miggy. He needs to settle down and Atsu looked much better on the right. If St Max is fit enough he should start on the left.

    I haven’t given up on Almiron, I just think he needs to get his head together and take his time a bit. Having someone to pass to in the opposition half would also help 🙂


  14. Another clear and obvious example of why we will have a very food chance of relegation. We have no goals! How many have we scored in 6 games? 4? Feel sorry for Joelinton. What the bell is he suppose to do when the team play like that?

    What the hell had they been doing all week?!

    I honestly don’t think we played that bad when McClaren was here…


  15. Eric, Almiron is another I feel sorry for. He gets the ball and more often than not Jean on his own! What’s he suppose to do?


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