Brighton vs West Brom Preview: Classic Encounter, Key Battle, Team News & More

Friday September 8th, 2017

Two old foes will go head to head once more this weekend as Chris Hughton's Brighton play hosts to Tony Pulis' West Brom.

Hughton will be wanting his side to trip up the impressive Baggies, who sit undefeated in fifth spot in the Premier League table.

The Seagulls with take motivation from the fact that Pulis' West Brom have only won in three league matches against promoted sides in 15 matches under the Welshman. With a win needed to hoist themselves away from the foot of the table Brighton will be better spirits after claiming their first league point against Watford before the international break.

Meanwhile, the Baggies will be happy to maintain their unbeaten run with yet another away win this campaign.


Classic Encounter


The last time these two sides met was all the way back on the 3rd April 1993 in the second division with the Baggies running out 3-1 winners at home that particular day.

With a meeting seemingly long due between the sides, the Seagulls will hoping to turn around the fortunes of 24 years ago.

Richard Heathcote/GettyImages

Led by manager Ossie Ardiles, the promotion chasing West Brom were approaching the end of the campaign and new forward Andy Hunt scoring a hat-trick - in his second game for the club - at the Hawthorns that day.

With both sides failing to meet each other in the twenty-odd years since, through multiple promotions and relegations in the same seasons, the two will finally be able to boost their record against the other when they face off at the Amex stadium for the very first time.


Key Battle


Kieran Gibbs vs Bruno


This one may seem a little more left field but the former Gunners man's introduction to league action in a Baggies shirt could prove very effective in the attacking department for Pulis' side, especially against a Brighton side that will be playing their own aggressive football at the Amex.

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The pace and attacking prowess the full-back could add to West Brom could cause problems on the overlap with fellow Englishman Jay Rodriguez. 

The veteran Spaniard, or potentially new signing from Sporting Lisbon Ezequiel Schelotto, will have their work cut our against the pair on the right side for the Seagulls, with defensive support certainly needed from whomever appears on their right wing on the day.

With a solid defence shown thus far in the campaign the baggies will be looking to add a few more goals to the Arsenal at their disposal.


Team News


With strikers Tomer Hemed and Glenn Murray fit to feature for the Seagulls they should not be lacking attacking options, however fellow forward Sam Baldock is still sidelined with a thigh injury.

Meanwhile Izzy Brown is out with thigh trouble too, while Steve Sidwell, Beram Kayal and Gaetan Bong are all still missing due to injury. New signing Jose Izquierdo should be set to make his first start for the Seagulls while Schelotto could be set to appear at right-back.

Charlie Crowhurst/GettyImages

For the Baggies, Belgium Nacer Chadli is close to fitness but unlikely to feature for the travelling team as he works his way to full fitness.

Jonny Evans is the other noticable absentee but will again unlikely to return straight into the side with Craig Dawson and Ahmed Hegazi forming a strong pairing so far this campaign.

ISAAC LAWRENCE/GettyImages

Gibbs and Grzegorz Krychowiak could likely make their first appearances for the Baggies after switches from Arsenal and Paris St. Germain respectively.


Potential Brighton Starting Lineup: Ryan, Bruno, Duffy, Dunk, Suttner, Stephens, Propper, Izquierdo, Gross, March, Murray


Potential West Brom Starting Lineup: Foster, Nyom, Dawson, Hegazi, Gibbs, Livermore, Barry, Phillips, Morrison, Rodriguez, Rondon


Prediction


With a willingness to build upon recent results and provide their home fans with some good results, Chris Hughton's men will be aggressive in their play and certainly be looking to claim all three points against the Baggies.

But teams are finding it difficult to get past the Baggies defence recently with only one goal conceded against Stoke, that one coming from a Hegazi mistake at the back.

This is one of those matches that could certainly turn any way given the circumstances on the day but it would seem that West Broms strength and impressive new signings will hand them the edge in the contest.

But Brighton will be up for the fight in front of a home crowd with any result proving hard to come by.

Prediction: Brighton 1-2 West Brom

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