Brighton welcome Crystal Palace to the Amex Stadium on Tuesday night for an eagerly anticipated Premier League clash dubbed the 'M23 derby'.
The home side have been in good form of late, winning four from their last seven league games, and are ever edging towards staying in the Premier League for another season having amassed 18 points already this season. The Amex has become a fortress for the Seagulls this season losing just once - whilst claiming the scalp of Manchester United along the way.
Meanwhile Palace have endured a frustrating season as they sit in 14th place and four points above the foot of the table. Good performances have not translated into points and they have had a real issues finding the back of the net - only Cardiff have scored fewer than the London side this campaign. However, after beating struggling Burnley 2-0 at the weekend they should be heading down the M23 with renewed confidence.
Check out 90min's preview for Tuesday's clash below.
How to Watch
|When is Kick-Off?||Tuesday 4 December|
|What Time is Kick-Off?||19:45 (BST)|
|Where is it Played?||The Amex Stadium|
|Tv Channel/Live Stream?||Gillette Soccer Special|
After Brighton ran out 2-1 winners away at Huddersfield on Saturday, boss Chris Hughton is unlikely to want to ring the changes - but may be forced into some as club captain Bruno limped off late on in that fixture, but reports suggest he should be okay to take part.
Glenn Murray is also likely to come back into the starting line-up as he was rested on Saturday when Florin Andone started his first Premier League game. Despite grabbing himself a goal against the Terriers he is likely to make way for Murray who has seven league goals already this campaign.
Hughton has also confirmed that record signing Alireza Jahanbakhsh is back in training but will not be fit enough to take part on Tuesday. Meanwhile, Dale Stephens will be serving the last of his three match suspension so is also unavailable.
Similarly to Hughton, Palace boss Roy Hodgson will be heading into the clash coming off the back of a solid win and will be unlikely to make too many changes to his side. The Eagles have had a fairly settled side all season and it's likely to remain that way on Tuesday.
Andros Townsend scored a stunner at the weekend and will continue in an advanced role alongside talisman Wilfried Zaha. Palace's big summer signing Max Meyer is now up to speed with English football and the German is starting to show the form to justify why Palace have made him their highest earner - above Zaha.
On the injury front, Hodgson will be without record signing Christian Benteke as he makes his long awaited return from a knee injury. Scott Dann and Connor Wickham will also be unavailable - although the ex-England manager has confirmed Wickham will be back before the New Year.
|Brighton||Ryan, Bruno, Dunk, Duffy, Bernardo; Izquierdo, Propper, Kayal, Knockaert, Gross; Murray.|
|Crystal Palace||Hennessey; Wan-Bissaka, Tomkins, Sakho, Van Aanholt; Milivojevic, Kouyate, McArthur, Meyer; Zaha, Townsend.|
History suggests that there has been nothing between the two clubs over the years, Tuesday night's clash will be the 100th time the pair have met and Brighton very, very slightly have the better record.
The Seagulls have won 38 times whilst the Eagles have won 36. The remaining 25 fixtures have been drawn but the form book and history goes out the window for this derby. It is bound to be an electric atmosphere on Tuesday night as both sides will want to claim the bragging rights over their fierce rivals.
Brighton have been in the better form of late as they sit 11th in the table, just four points off sixth place Everton. The Seagulls have had a very encouraging start to the season after many tipped them to be in a relegation dogfight, but Hughton has done a terrific job on the south coast and has guided his side to four wins in their last seven league games.
Their home form has been particularly good having claimed victories over Man Utd, West Ham and Wolves this season; how they would love to add Crystal Palace to that list come Tuesday night.
It is slightly unfair to judge the Eagles on their recent form as they have had a horrible run of fixtures. Before the Burnley game their previous four league fixtures had been against Man Utd, Chelsea, Tottenham and Arsenal where they managed to pick up a point against the Gunners and the Red Devils.
They returned to winning ways on Saturday and will be looking forward to a run of games now in which they will be targeting maximum points.
Here's how each side has performed in their last five matches.
|Huddersfield 1-2 Brighton (01/12)||Palace 2-0 Burnley (01/12)|
|Brighton 1-1 Leicester (24/11)||Man Utd 0-0 Palace (24/11)|
|Cardiff 2-1 Brighton (10/11)||Palace 0-1 Tottenham (10/11)|
|Everton 3-1 Brighton (03/11)||Chelsea 3-1 Palace (04/11)|
|Brighton 1-0 Wolves (27/10)||Middlesbrough 1-0 Palace (31/10)|
The M23 derby has been fiercely contested over the years and Tuesday night will be no different,but these sort of fixtures are notoriously hard to predict as the emotion of the occasion can produce anything from crazy mistakes to sending offs.
Both teams will not want to lose this one so it could be a tight affair at the Amex producing a low-scoring draw.
Prediction: Brighton 1-1 Crystal Palace