Brighton (A) Pre-match thoughts, team news, possible line-ups & score prediction

After playing newly-promoted Nottingham Forest off the park last Saturday, Eddie Howe’s Mags travel to to the South Coast this weekend to take on Brighton.

The return of Dan Burn and a battle between two of THE best managers outside the ‘big six’, which promises to be a fascinating one when you consider our new style of play.

Having dominated the ball against Forest, it will be interesting to see if we can impose that same approach on a Brighton side who also push up the pitch and look to enjoy sustained periods of possession.

There’s no doubting how good we were last weekend – our work on and off the ball, intense pressing, crisp passing and urgency from the first minute to the last was a joy to watch – however this will be a much tougher test against a well-drilled team who beat Man Utd at Old Trafford in their opening game.

One area we must improve on is our final pass and finishing. Had we got that right against Forest, they’d have been out of sight at half-time. We weren’t punished in the end and still went on to win comfortably, but showing that killer instinct in the final third could be the difference in this one.

We’ve never beaten the Seagulls in a Premier League game at The Amex, losing twice and drawing on three occasions, but records are there to be broken by this new-look Newcastle United who finally look a fit, confident and well-organised side with an ever-evolving style of play under Eddie Howe.

The hosts looked good last weekend and are often tough to beat, but with summer exits for Marc Cucurella and Yves Bissouma leaving Potter’s side weakened in two key areas, there’s no reason why we can’t come away with another three points here!

Team news

Sky Sports’ Keith Downie revealed on Friday night that Nick Pope is now an injury doubt, meaning Martin Dubravka may now start in goal should our 6ft 6′ summer signing fail to recover in time.

Jonjo Shelvey (hamstring) has been ruled out for 12 weeks, while this game is likely to come too soon for Jamal Lewis, Federico Fernandez and Javier Manquillo once again.

Emil Krafth could miss out with tightness in his hamstring, but Jamaal Lascelles is expected to return to the squad.

For Brighton, Jakub Moder is the only senior player unavailable for the hosts. Graham Potter may well stick with the side that beat Man Utd last Sunday, although some wonder if Tariq Lamptey could start at right wing-back.

Predicted line ups

(4-3-3): Dubravka – Trippier, Schar, Burn, Targett – Willock, Guimaraes, Joelinton – Almiron, Wilson, Saint-Maximin.

I was expecting Eddie Howe to go with an unchanged side, until a Friday night update from Keith Downie revealed that Nick Pope is a ‘doubt’ after picking up a late injury. With that in mind, it seems Martin Dubravka may now start.

It won’t be long until Sven Botman is starting every week and showing the Premier League what a silky young centre-back he really is, but Dan Burn and Fabian Schar have barely put a foot wrong. The Blyth-born giant made defending look easy against Forest and will be keen to keep his place against his former club, while Schar showed his quality once again with a stunning strike to open the deadlock.

In midfield, Howe will hand chances to Sean Longstaff in time – especially now Jonjo Shelvey is out until December – but there’s no reason to change that dynamic threesome of Bruno Guimaraes, Joe Willock and Joelinton that worked so well against Forest. Saying that, this will be a greater test of Bruno’s discipline in that deep role, as I suspect we may have less of the ball and more defending to do this time around.

In attack, we’ll hopefully see Allan Saint-Maximin and Callum Wilson pick up from where they left off. The former showed so many promising signs against Forest, looking fitter, working harder, making better runs and improved decisions on the ball, while Wilson will be after more goals to boost his World Cup hopes. Almiron was a livewire and created a few big chances, however a couple of missed chances or miscued final balls perhaps explained why Eddie Howe remains in the market for a goalscoring right winger?

Predicted Brighton XI: (3-5-1-1): Veltman, Dunk, Webster – Lamptey, Gross, Mac Allister, Caicedo, Trossard – Lallana – Welbeck.

One to watch: Moises Caicedo – Lamptey will be a huge threat down the right if he is recalled, but I’ve gone for the 20-year-old Ecuadorian. He was linked with a move to Tyneside before joining Brighton and is the man Potter has trusted to replace Yves Bissouma. A box-to-box midfielder who looks to have a little bit of everything. Hopefully our Brazilian boys have too much for the young South American!

Match prediction

As stated earlier in the piece, I see this being a fascinating battle of two sides who’ll look to keep the ball, press and create overloads out wide.

A part of me thinks we’ll keep the run going with another big win and clean sheet, but I’m going with a low scoring draw.

Prediction: Brighton 1-1 Newcastle

About Olly Hawkins

As a Junior Magpie since birth and season ticket holder, I eat, sleep and breathe all things NUFC! Here at the blog, I aim to bring you news, views, match reports and transfer exclusives as and when I get them.

47 thoughts on “Brighton (A) Pre-match thoughts, team news, possible line-ups & score prediction

  1. Brighton are an excellent footballing side – Potter has done a great job there with a very limited budget.

    Ashworth unearthed some gems there along with getting in some good older pros like Lallana & Welbeck.

    In a slightly similar way to us they could be so much better if they didn’t have an injury prone forward – though I do obviously rate Wilson higher.

    Brighton are one of the few teams I enjoy watching in the league – Liverpool & Man City the other 2 … and since Howe has came in, NUFC are without doubt on that shortlist now.


  2. I suspect this will be close, but I am confident. I have Brighton scraping a top ten finish this year, but I think we will do better than that. so 2-1 to us.


  3. Brighton really have been a pain in the @rse for us but that was due mostly to the defensive set ups of Rafa and the Cabbage. We just let them keep the ball for most of the game. We made Brighton look like Man City or Barca with Messi, Xavi and Iniesta. It is different now and they have lost key players including the ones noted by Olly but also Ben White and BDB. In my opinion they have lost their 4 best players.

    Apart from against us, Brighton usually have a problem of finishing off moves. This and their player losses give us a good chance and I agree with Prem that we will win. Welbeck doesnt scare me. He has a couple of good games, like at Man U, but also has about 10 shockers.

    We have a better team than them and are starting to play the “Eddie way”. We pressed Forest into total submission. We will probably not give up the amount of possession that we have in the past. I will repeat myself, we no longer have the Cabbage playing a 9-0-1 and trying to steal a draw so it should be a more even game.


  4. The Pope injury tells us why we should keep Dubz and sell Darlow. Remember last year when Woodman played and was awful. Same with Darlow, who had reverted back to his deer in the headlights and bad decision making. They probably cost us 4-5 points. We need 2 good ‘keepers.


  5. Can you imagine if we lost Bruno, BDB, Maxi, Tripps and Wilson? These are who I consider our best players. I know some are new additions and Tripps and Wilson were out for most of the second half of the season, but you just have to look at the last 3 games to see what a difference they make (Arsenal, Burnley and Forest).

    Brighton losing their best 4 players has to affect them no matter how good Graham Potter is.

    BTW I could add Big Joe to my best player list but he was so **** for so long that I am not totally convinced yet of his transformation. I would say I am about 70% convinced.


  6. I am worried about your 1-1 prediction Olly. It is the exact same score that Lawro, Merse and Chris Sutton predict. I always get worried when there is a total consensus.


  7. Gutted for Pope. Just as he’s getting started & his debut was more of a spectator really.
    But, pleased Dubz is there. He’s a quality keeper – distribution let’s him down at times but safe as houses between the sticks.


  8. I wonder who will win the battle of the media darlings – Stevie G v Super-Frank. I don’t think either have done really bad jobs but Gerrard has underperformed and Lampard just doesnt have the squad to be anything but bottom 6.

    I am awake at 6am to watch it.


  9. I just looked at the Everton starting lineup and I am not sure if I would take any of their players. Maybe the T-Rex Mackem who is captain. Certainly not Anthony Gordon.

    I think they have spent half a billion pounds and they may as well have flushed it down the drain.


  10. Anthony Gordon had 4 goals and 2 assists in 35 games last season. He is 22. That doesnt speak to me of a 40 million pound player like the pundits are saying. I reckon 50 mil on another Brazilian international (Paqueta) would be money better spent.

    I am not saying he is a bad player, just average, and not an upgrade on what we have.


  11. I had been thinking of 3-4-2-1 but the more I think about it the more I like it.

    Pope;- BDB – Botman – Schar; Targett, Big Joe & Bruno, Trippier; ASM, Paqueta; and Wilson

    Only needs one new buy and we have subs and the option of switching back to 4 – 3 – 3


  12. It is a really odd feeling for me wanting Villa to win 🙂 Half time. I really dont see what the pundits see in the dirty little Everton scr0te – you know who I mean.


  13. Looks like Targett is injured. Glad that Manquillo is on the subs bench. Not sure if we will keep him but I always thought he was a solid player who could play either FB position.

    Villa/Everton is a really low quality game. We should finish above both. I am not sure if Everton will even score a single goal before Calvert-Lewin returns which is supposed to be 5 weeks 🙂


  14. God this heat man, awful just awful. Feel for the players today, bound to effect the games you would think.


  15. So Targett is out and not even on the bench. Botman gets his start. Wonder if it’s three at the back or if Botman will replace Targett? Pope in goal. I guess there was some disinformation going on? This will be a tough game today. A real test of how/if we have improved


  16. I got a stream last week on Will try it again

    Site still not working right …


  17. Maxi is playing a shocker 😡😡. That dive was so clear and he’s a liability right now giving the ball away and on a yellow. Tough game this. I’d take maxi off


  18. Looks like some of the fans forgot their sunblock. Some are already lobster. I doubt they will be feeling good tonight.


  19. Yep sunstroke is no fun, been there, got the tee shirt. 1976 was I ill.

    Settle for a draw now

    Schar’s hammy could be gone here


  20. Got a bit lucky and a draw is a good result.

    In other news, the QPR goalie scored a last minute equaliser against the Mackems.


  21. Hard earned point against a very good Brighton side that.

    Maybe even the best possible result to further highlight our need for improved attacking players.

    I know Eric likes an overrated players – is Maxi far off that category?.


  22. Well I’ve got StanHardy login again! 😡😡

    That was tough. Brighton are very well organised and we were toothless today. Got battered and I’ll take a draw there. Some amazing saves from Pope and great clearances off the line. Need a striker and attacking mid desperately.

    Maxi can go for me if he’s not going to pull his head out his ****.


  23. Very good back five and a bit pathetic front 6 apart from Miggy’s energy. Also shows the paucity of the squad when to change the game up Howe brings on Murphy and Wood. Where’s Fraser, and Anderson would have offered much more than those two duffers?


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