Boasting a 2-1 victory from last week thanks to goals from Lewis Dunk and Leandro Trossard, Brighton welcome Steve Bruce’s struggling magpies to the Amex Stadium in a crucial six pointer which will inevitably have major relegation ramifications.
The Home Side
Graham Potter’s seagulls have played some very expansive football this season, and i’m sure if you watch one of their games for 15 minutes you would think they are a side fighting for European football, but the Albion sit just three points above the relegation zone, with just one win in their last six.
Brighton’s problems haven’t come from creating chances though, they have come from finishing them off, Brighton are 4th in the league in expected goals, yet 16th in the table, which must signal to Graham Potter and Tony Bloom that a big summer transfer is a must.
The Albion’s defence on the other hand, has been their best feature this season, conceding an average of just 1.2 goals per game, which is brilliant for a side bearing the grunt of a fierce relegation battle.
Steve Bruce’s Newcastle side have had a very rough season, not many good runs of games or wins, however they are unbeaten in three and are looking to extend that this Saturday on the south coast.
One shining light for Newcastle this season is Callum Wilson, Newcastle’s £20m signing from Bournemouth in the summer, he has 10 goals and 5 assists in 21 appearances for Newcastle, however he is sidelined with a hamstring injury picked up in their 3-2 win at home to Southampton, so the magpies will have to find their goals elsewhere.
Aaron Connolly, Florin Andone, Adam Webster, Dan Burn (doubtful), Solly March, Tariq Lamptey, Jose Izquierdo.
Callum Wilson, Fabian Schär, Allan Saint-Maximin, Miguel Almiron.
I don’t see any reason for Graham Potter to change his starting 11 from Sunday’s crucial win over the Saints, with the exception of Dan Burn’s suspected ankle tweak, the two strikers would give the Albion more of a goal threat, with a suspected partnership of Neal Maupay and Danny Welbeck up front for Brighton.
The centre half pairing is almost definitely going to be Ben White and Skipper Lewis Dunk, with Adam Webster out injured.
Joel Veltman at right back and possibly 20 year-old Michał karbownik replacing Dan Burn if he is unable to play.
Bissouma is a lock for midfield and Lallana has certainly made a case for another start after his performance against Southampton.
A pretty standard lineup is expected for Newcastle on Saturday, with Dubravka in goal and Lascelles partnering Clark at centre back, Willock, Shelvey and Hayden as a midfield three, Ryan Fraser playing with Joelinton and Dwight Gale up top as Callum Wilson is out.
The Key to Victory
For Brighton, the key to victory is simple, keep the ball, dictate the flow of the game and create as many chances as possible to try and eventually break Steve Bruce’s sturdy defence down.
The key to Newcastle’s victory may be a little trickier, Bruce will most likely be reluctant to go out with the intent to attack from the get go, so the counter attack will be vital for Newcastle with the pacy three or Joelinton, Fraser and Gale.
Brighton 2-1 Newcastle