By 90Min
February 09, 2018

Stoke City take on Brighton and Hove Albion at the Bet365 Stadium on Saturday, with both teams looking to pick up the three points to move them away from the Premier League relegation zone. 

Stoke currently sit in 18th place in the table, while Brighton occupy a slightly more secure 13th place - but are still just three points clear of the Potters. 

With both teams likely to be involved in the end of season scramble for safety, three valuable points in this game could be vital for either team. 

Here is everything that you need to know ahead of Saturday's Premier League clash.


Classic Encounter

Brighton 2-2 Stoke (November 2017)

GLYN KIRK/GettyImages

This was the first ever Premier League meeting that has taken place between the two clubs, as they played out an entertaining 2-2 draw in front of the TV cameras at the AMEX Stadium. 

Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting put the visitors ahead in the first half when he took advantage of a Xherdan Shaqiri pass. 


Pascal Gross pulled a goal back, and would have thought that his team would go into half time on level terms, only for Kurt Zouma to score for the Potters in first half added time. 

Bryn Lennon/GettyImages

The Seagulls were able to take a point out of the game thanks to a Jose Izquierdo goal in the second half. 

The last league encounter between these two teams before this season was a Championship clash in 2006, a game in which Stoke came out 1-5 victors against an already relegated Brighton side. Rooney scored a hat-trick that day for the Potters - Adam Rooney, that is.


Key Battles


Anthony Knockaert vs Erik Pieters

#️⃣3️⃣EP #SCFC 🔴⚪️

A post shared by Stoke City FC (@stokecity) on

Anthony Knockaert was crowned player of the year in the Championship last season, as he registered 15 goals and nine assists in the second tier. This year he has found goals harder to come by, only scoring two so far this season, but he can be key to Brighton's attacking creativity, and is full of flicks and tricks to beat a defender.

The defender whose job it will be to keep him quiet this weekend Erik Pieters. The Netherlands international has started 22 games in the Premier League so far this season, and if can keep Knockaert away from the danger zones, it could go a long way to the Potters getting something out of the game. 


Team News

👀⚽️👍🏼

A post shared by Jesé Rodríguez (@jeserodriguez10) on

Stoke may be without both Jesé and Darren Fletcher for this game, as they are both still struggling with injury. Although Jesé did make an appearance for Stoke's U23s last week. Fletcher missed last week's defeat to Bournemouth, and it is unknown when he will return.

Steve Sidwell, Isaiah Brown and new January signing Jürgen Locadia will all be unavailable for the Seagulls due to injury. Sidwell has been out all season with a back problem, and Brown ruptured his ACL in the FA Cup clash with Crystal Palace last month.


Prediction

GLYN KIRK/GettyImages

Looking at the form of both teams, they have just a single win in their last seven Premier League encounters, although Brighton's did come against close rivals West Ham last Saturday, which could boost the team's confidence. 

Stoke have conceded 52 Premier League goals so far this season, compared with Brighton who have conceded 35. Although the Potters have registered 5 more goals over the course of the season. 

It may be a cagey affair with points being valuable to both teams at this stage of the season. 

Prediction: Stoke City 1-1 Brighton and Hove Albion

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