Newly promoted Brighton and Hove Albion are enjoying life in the Premier League. One of the lesser talked-about teams; Brighton and Hove Albion have gone about doing their job quietly. For a club whose aim this season certainly will be to survive the relegation, they have done well. After eleven game-weeks, Brighton and Hove Albion find themselves in a lofty 8th position on the table.
Since losing to Arsenal in the beginning of October last month, they are now unbeaten for four matches. The record got even more impressive after they dispatched Slaven Bilic’s West Ham United side 3-0. It’s been over a month since they last tasted defeat, something nobody at the club really expected.
Although Stoke City won the last time they played away at Watford, it has been two years since the Potters have registered back to back wins on the road and given Brighton’s resistance at home, it will be difficult for Stoke City to repeat the feat. Three defeats, including heavy drubbings at the hands of Manchester City and Chelsea, in the last six matches, mean that Stoke City are still struggling to find the form of the last few seasons that has made them a regular in England’s top flight.
Brighton And Hove Albion
The good news for Brighton and Hove Albion is that they have no fresh injury concerns as the players return from international break. Steve Sidwell is the only confirmed player for Chris Hughton’s Brighton side set to miss the game with a back injury. Their goalkeeper Mat Ryan is expected to be assessed before the match, as he returns from Sydney after helping Australia seal a place in next year’s FIFA World Cup at Russia.
Jack Butland is ruled out after breaking his thumb while on international duty while Geoff Cameron will also remain out for the match three weeks after he suffered a concussion in training.
Here is how Brighton will look to line up in a 4-4-1-1 formation.
Mathew Ryan is expected in goal again for Brighton. The heart of the defence is likely to consist of Lewis Dunk and Shane Duffy. Bruno is expected at right back with the left back position likely to go to Gaëtan Bong.
Dale Stephens is likely to be one of the central midfielders with Davy Propper likely to be his partner. Anthony Knockaert is expected to play on the right wing and last weekend’s goalscorer Jose Izquierdo is expected on the left wing for Brighton and Hove Albion.
Pascal Groß is expected to play as the withdrawn forward with Glenn Murray set to lead the line for the Seagulls once again.
Mark Hughes will most likely be going in with a 3-4-2-1 formation.
Lee Grant is expected to start in goal with Hughes likely to opt for a three-man backline, consisting of Kurt Zouma, Ryan Shawcross and Kevin Wimmer. Erik Pieters is set to operate as the left wing back with Mame-Biram Diouf on the right-hand side.
Darren Fletcher and Joe Allen will once again marshal the central midfield.
Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting is expected to lead the line with Xherdan Shaquiri and Ramadan Sobhi as the wing forwards in behind.
Brighton and Hove Albion Win: 7/5
Stoke City Win: 12/5