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Jack Kaye's Albion Match Reports
NEXT GAME - EVERTON - AWAY - PREMIER LEAGUE - 11 JANUARY 2020
There was a change of manager at Everton in the middle of December, with the experienced Carlo Ancelotti replacing the departed Marco Silva. Their last two outings have seen the Toffees lose 1-2 at Manchester City in the Premier on the 1 January and 0-1 at Liverpool in the FA Cup on the 5 January. On the 26 October 2019 the Albion beat Everton 3-2 in the Premier at the Amex. The Seagulls will have their hands full at Goodison
Park on the 11 January.
21 DECEMBER 2019
BRIGHTON & HOVE ALBION 0
SHEFFIELD UNITED 1
PREMIER LEAGUE - at the AMERICAN EXPRESS COMMUNITY STADIUM, FALMER
Following their encouraging performance in the 1-1 draw at Crystal Palace on the 16 December 2019, the Albion were back at the Amex welcoming Premier League newcomers Sheffield United to the South Coast.
Albion made one change to their starting line-up from the Palace game, with Dale Stephens
replacing Yves Bissouma in the middle of the park.
The Blades have made an impressive start upon their return to the top flight, currently lying in fifth spot in the Premier with 25 points from 17 games. Expertly managed by former Albion player Chris Wilder and captained by former Seagull Oliver Norwood Sheffield are unbeaten in their opening eight away league games of the season. Last time out Sheffield had beaten Aston Villa 2-0 at home on the 14 December with both their goals coming from John Fleck who was suspended for this game. Manager Wilder made two changes to his starting line-up for this game, with Luke Freeman and Oliver McBurnie coming in for the suspended John Fleck and Lys Mousset.
In the first twenty minutes both teams had seen efforts rightfully disallowed by VAR, on eight minutes Blades John Egan had handled in forcing the ball home from a corner and ruling Martin Montoya offside prior to Neal Maupay tapping-in after Blades keeper Dean Henderson saved Aaron Mooy's shot. On 23 minutes the visitors took the lead when Oliver McBurnie pounced on a misplaced back header by Adam Webster to race through and shoot home via the post. 0-1.
A dour first-half ended with the Blades ahead. Half-time 0-1.
Early action in the second-half saw Webster dithering on the ball which enabled striker David McGoldrick to race through unchallenged, round Albion keeper Mathew Ryan before firing into the side-netting. Keeper Ryan then had a lucky escape when he dropped the ball at the feet of Blades defender Jack O'Connell who promptly netted but VAR came to Albion's
rescue, rightly ruling O'Connell offside Substitute Aaron Connolly then fastened on to a
through ball from Dale Stephens but his curled shot was tipped over by keeper Henderson.
Towards the end efforts by substitute Lys Mousset and McGoldrick came close to increasing
the Blades lead. A bad day at the office for the Seagulls. Final-score 0-1.
Albion's worst performance of the season. A number of players were well below their best and the result was obvious - a home loss.
Albion had 9 attempts at goal, with 2 on target and won 4 corners, free-kicks conceded - 6.
Sheffield United had 7 attempts at goal, with 2 on target and won 3 corners, free-kicks
conceded - 11.
Albion line-up (4-4-2):- Mathew Ryan; Martin Montoya (Yves Bissouma 56), Adam Webster,
Lewis Dunk (Capt), Dan Burn; Pascal Gross (Glenn Murray 46), Dale Stephens, Davy
Propper, Aaron Mooy; Neal Maupay, Leandro Trossard (Aaron Connolly 46). Subs not
used: David Button (G/K), Shane Duffy, Bernardo, Steven Alzate.
Sheffield United line-up (3-5-2):- Dean Henderson; Chris Basham, John Egan, Jack
O'Connell; George Baldock, John Lundstram, Oliver Norwood (Capt) (Mo Besic 82), Luke Freeman (Ben Osborn 53), Ender Stevens; Oliver McBurnie (Lys Mousset 63), David McGoldrick. Subs not used: MIchael Verrips (G/K), Phil Jagielka, Callum Robinson, Billy Sharp.
Referee: Robert Jones (Merseyside).
Yellow Cards: Albion: 1 - Yves Bissouma. Sheffield United: 3 - Chris Basham,
Ender Stevens, David McGoldrick.
Possession: Albion - 69%. Sheffield United - 31%.
Attendance: 30505 (including 3008 Sheffield United fans).
26 DECEMBER 2019
TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 2
Harry Kane (53) Alli (72)
BRIGHTON & HOVE ALBION 1
PREMIER LEAGUE - at the TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR STADIUM, LONDON N17
For the second time in 21 days the Albion made their way to North London for a Premier League encounter with Tottenham Hotspur at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, "live" in front of the Amazon Prime cameras. On the 5 December 2019 the Seagulls beat Arsenal 2-1 at the Emirates Stadium so a similar result in N17 would do very nicely.
Albion Head Coach Graham Potter made five changes to his starting line-up from the team which lost 0-1 at home to Sheffield United on the 21 December 2019, with Ezequiel Schelotto, Shane Duffy, Steven Alzate, Bernardo and Aaron Connolly coming in for Martin Montoya, Lewis Dunk, Davy Propper, Neal Maupay and Leandro Trossard.
Last season Spurs completed a double over the Albion, winning 2-1 at the Amex on the 22 September 2018 and 1-0 at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on the 23 April 2019. This season under the reign of former manager Mauricio Pochettino the Seagulls pulled off a shock result at the Amex, beating Spurs 3-0 on the 5 October 2019, with Aaron Connolly (2) and Neal Maupay scoring. Spurs subsequently sacked Pochettino in November and quickly installed former Chelsea supremo Jose Mourinho in his place. Last time out Spurs lost 0-2 at home to Chelsea on the 22 December 2019 and for this game Mourinho made two changes
to his starting line-up from the Chelsea game, with Harry Winks and Ryan Sessegnon coming in for Eric Dier and the suspended Heung-Min Son.
The Albion were prominent early on with their neat passing but Harry Kane was unlucky to see a goal chalked off for offside by VAR. On 37 minutes the Seagulls took the lead when Ezequiel Schelotto's strong run down the wing was halted by a foul by Harry Winks and the resultant free-kick by Pascal Gross found the head of Adam Webster in the box who rose to power the ball home. 1-0.
The Seagulls deservedly lead at the break. Half-time 1-0.
The home side were a different kettle of fish second-half and equalised on 53 minutes when a series of fortunate rebounds saw the ball end up at the feet of Kane and the England striker volleyed the ball home. 1-1.
Spurs clinched the winner on 72 minutes with a superbly crafted goal as substitute Christian
Eriksen's chipped pass found Serge Aurier on the right and the ball was laid off to Dele Alli who lifted the ball over Albion keeper Mathew Ryan into the net. 1-2.
Aaron Connolly missed a reasonable chance for the Seagulls but Spurs hung on for the three points. Final-score 1-2.
Until the Spurs equaliser the Albion looked the likely winners but their inability to convert their chances cost them dear in the end. Another promising performance but oh those missed opportunities.
Albion had 11 attempts at goal, with 5 on target and won 2 corners, free-kicks conceded - 9. Spurs had 11 attempts at goal, with 5 on target and won 9 corners, free-kicks conceded - 10.
Albion line-up (4-4-2):- Mathew Ryan; Ezequiel Schelotto (Yves Bissouma 83), Adam Webster, Shane Duffy, Dan Burn; Steven Alzate, Dale Stephens (Capt), Bernardo (Leandro Trossard 76), Pascal Gross; Aaron Mooy, Aaron Connolly (Neal Maupay 68). Subs not used: David Button (G/K), Martin Montoya, Davy Propper, Glenn Murray.
Tottenham Hotspur line-up (4-4-2):- Paulo Gazzaniga; Serge Aurier, Davinson Sanchez, Toby Alderweireld, Jan Vertonghen; Harry Winks (Christian Eriksen 68), Moussa Sissoko, Ryan Sessegnon (Lo Celso 56), Lucas Moura (Eric Dier 76); Dele Alli, Harry Kane. Subs not used: Michel Worm (G/K), Juan Foyth, Erik Lamela, Tanganga.
Referee: Graham Scott (Oxfordshire).
Yellow Cards: Albion: 2 - Dan Burn, Pascal Gross. Tottenham Hotspur: 4 -
Davinson Sanchez, Harry Winks, Moussa Sissoko, Lucas Moura.
Possession: Albion - 46%. Tottenham Hotspur - 54%.
Attendance: 56308 (including 3000 Albion fans).
28 DECEMBER 2019
BRIGHTON & HOVE ALBION 2
Jahanbakhsh (3) Mooy (79)
AFC BOURNEMOUTH 0
PREMIER LEAGUE - at the AMERICAN EXPRESS COMMUNITY STADIUM, FALMER
For their final game of 2019, the Albion welcomed South Coast rivals AFC Bournemouth to the Amex for a Premier League encounter, "live" in front of the Sky Sports cameras.
The Albion, following their narrow 1-2 loss at Tottenham on the 26 December 2019, made seven changes to their starting line-up from that game, with Martin Montoya, Lewis Dunk, Davy Propper, Yves Bissouma, Alireza Jahanbakhsh, Neal Maupay and Leandro Trossard replacing Ezequiel Schelotto, Adam Webster, Steven Alzate, Dale Stephens, Bernardo, Pascal Gross and Aaron Connolly.
The Cherries were in the midst of a poor run of results, which wasn't helped by a lengthy injury list and for this game Manager Eddie Howe made four changes to his starting line-up from the team which drew 1-1 at home to Arsenal on the 26 December 2019, with Harry Wilson, Philip Billing, Junior Stanislas and Dominic Solanke replacing Ryan Fraser, Lewis Cook, Jefferson Lerma and Callum Wilson. Last season the Cherries completed a double over the Seagulls, winning 2-0 at the Vitality Stadium on the 22 December 2018 and 5-0 at the Amex on the 13 April 2019.
With the Albion and Bournemouth perched just above the relegation zone it was a must win game for both clubs. In the end it was a game of firsts as on 3 minutes the Albion took the lead when Aaron Mooy's long pass found Neal Maupay on the left and the Frenchman's slide-rule pass found the on-running Alireza Jahanbakhsh whose low well-struck right-footed shot gave Bournemouth goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale no chance as the ball whistled into the corner of the net. It was the Iranian's first goal for the Albion and Jahanbakhsh was the third Iranian player to score in Premier League history. 1-0.
The goal gave the confidence boost they needed and despite their territorial advantage the Seagulls failed to add to their lead. Half-time 1-0.
The second-half saw Albion suffer a hair-line VAR decision when Dan Burn fired home following a goal-mouth scramble but the effort was disallowed for a marginal offside offence. The game was settled on 79 minutes when Leandro Trossard's pinpoint pass found Aaron Mooy who flipped the ball over a defender before chipping the ball home for a delightful goal. It was the Australian's first goal for the Albion and a superb one at that. 2-0.
The Seagulls thereafter saw out the remaining minutes to gain a valuable three Premier League points. Final-score 2-0.
The Albion had 16 attempts at goal, with 6 on target and won 9 corners, free-
kicks conceded - 8. Bournemouth had 10 attempts at goal, with 2 on target
and won 2 corners, free-kicks conceded - 11.
A fine and vital win for the Albion and well-deserved. Alireza Jahanbakhsh opened his account for the Seagulls with a finely worked goal as did Huddersfield loanee Aaron Mooy with a superb goal. A good way to end 2019 and Albion's first league win over Bournemouth since the 3-2 win at Withdean on New Year's Day 2008.
Albion line-up (4-4-2):- Mathew Ryan; Martin Montoya, Shane Duffy, Lewis Dunk (Capt), Dan Burn; Davy Propper, Yves Bissouma (Glenn Murray 89), Aaron Mooy (Dale Stephens 84), Alireza Jahanbakhsh (Steven Alzate 84); Neal Maupay, Leandro Trossard. Subs not used: David Button (G/K), Adam Webster, Bernardo, Pascal Gross.
AFC Bournemouth line-up (4-4-2):- Aaron Ramsdale; Jack Stacey, Steve Cook (Capt), Chris Mepham, Diego Rico; Harry Wilson (Ryan Fraser 62), Philip Billing, Dan Gosling, Junior Stanislas (Callum Wilson 62); Dominic Solanke, Joshua King (Lewis Cook 73). Subs not used: Artur Boruc (G/K), Andrew Surman, Jefferson Lerma, Jack Simpson.
Referee: Paul Tierney (Lancashire).
Yellow Cards: AFC Bournemouth: 2 - Steve Cook, Philip Billing.
Possession: Albion - 55%. AFC Bournemouth - 45%.
Attendance: 30441 (including 1786 AFC Bournemouth fans).
1 JANUARY 2020
BRIGHTON & HOVE ALBION 1
PREMIER LEAGUE - at the AMERICAN EXPRESS COMMUNITY STADIUM, FALMER
Buoyant Albion welcomed high-flying Chelsea to the Amex for the first Premier League fixture of 2020, "live" in front of the BT Sport cameras.
Albion Head Coach Graham Potter made two changes to his starting line-up from the team which beat AFC Bournemouth 2-0 at the Amex on the 28 December 2019, with Adam Webster and Steven Alzate replacing Shane Duffy and Alireza Jahanbakhsh.
Last time out Chelsea had won 2-1 at the Arsenal on the 29 December 2019 aaand for this game Manager Frank Lampard made three changes to his starting line-up from the Arsenal game, with Reece James, Jorginho and Christian Pulisic coming in for Fikayo Tomori, Matteo Kovacic and Emerson Palmieri.
Chelsea started the brighter of the two teams and it was no surprise when they took the lead on 10 minutes when a scramble in the Albion goalmouth ended with Chelsea captain Cesar Azpilicueta prodding the ball home from close-range. 0-1.
Albion suffered a major blow on 20 minutes when a mid-air collision between Chelsea's Reece James and Albion defender Dan Burn resulted in Burn having to leave the field of play with a fractured collarbone, Bernardo substituting. Just prior to the break Leandro Trossard tested Chelsea's Kepa Arrizabalaga with a low shot which the keeper held with ease. Half-time 0-1.
Aaron Connolly replaced the ineffective Yves Bissouma at the start of the second-half and the young Irishman injected a bit of pace up front for the Seagulls. Play was confined to the middle of the park with neither side being able to create a goal-scoring opportunity. Albion's last substitution took place on 69 minutes when Alireza Jahanbakhsh replaced Aaron Mooy.
In 26 appearances following his £17 million move from AZ Alkmaar in the summer of 2018 Jahanbakhsh had failed to notch a single goal. Things changed against AFC Bournemouth on the 28 December when the Iranian international scored his first goal for the club. Out of the blue on 84 minutes Albion scored a stunning equaliser when Lewis Dunk headed the ball up for Jahanbakhsh ten yards out to score with a sensational overhead kick which flew past keeper Arrizabalaga. An incredible goal which sent the Albion fans wild with delight. 1-1. Both teams thereafter seemed to be content to share the spoils. Final-score 1-1.
This game will be remembered for the sensational goal scored by Alireza Jahanbakhsh which will be a candidate for Goal of the Season. This was Albion's first-ever league point gained against Chelsea. Albion's three substitutes Bernardo, Aaron Connolly and Jahanbakhsh all made substantial contributions to the well-earned draw gained by the Seagulls.
Albion had 16 attempts at goal, with 5 on target and won 5 corners, free-kicks conceded - 8. Chelsea had 16 attempts at goal, with 5 on target and won 3 corners, free-kicks conceded - 15.
Albion line-up (4-4-2):- Mathew Ryan; Martin Montoya, Adam Webster, Lewis Dunk (Capt), Dan Burn (Bernardo 23); Davy Propper, Yves Bissouma (Aaron Connolly 46), Steven Alzate (Alireza Jahanbakhsh 69); Neal Maupay, Leandro Trossard. Subs not used: David Button (G/K), Shane Duffy, Dale Stephens, Pascal Gross.
Chelsea line-up (4-2-3-1):- Kepa Arrizabalaga, Reece James, Antonio Rudiger, Kurt Zouma, Cesar Azpilicueta (Capt); N'Golo Kante, Jorginho; Willian, Mason Mount (Matteo Kovacic 73), Christian Pulisic (Callum Hudson-Odoi 66); Tammy Abraham. Subs not used: Willy Caballero (G/K), Andreas Christensen, Emerson Palmeira, Tariq Lamptey, MIchy Batshuayi.
Referee: Stuart Attwell (Warwickshire). Assistant Referees: Lee Betts & Adam Nunn. Fourth Official: Gavin Ward. Video Assistant Referee: David Coote.
Yellow Cards: Albion: 2 - Lewis Dunk, Neal Maupay. Chelsea: 3 - Reece James, Kurt Zouma, Matteo Kovacic.
Possession: Albion - 48%. Chelsea - 52%.
Match Sponsors (Fielder Filter Systems) Albion Man of the Match: Alireza Jahanbakhsh
4 JANUARY 2020
BRIGHTON & HOVE ALBION 0
SHEFFIELD WEDNESDAY 1
THE EMIRATES FA CUP, THIRD ROUND - at the AMERICAN EXPRESS COMMUNITY STADIUM, FALMER
As a break from their Premier League programme, the Seagulls entertained Sky Bet Championship side Sheffield Wednesday in an Emirates FA Cup, Third Round tie at the Amex.
As usual, both teams made wholesale changes from their league fixtures, Head Coach Graham Potter making seven changes for the Albion and Manager Garry Monk making six changes for Wednesday.
The Seagulls had the better of the first-half action with Gaetan Bong seeing his header tipped over the bar by Wednesday keeper Cameron Dawson and then keeper Dawson made a fine save to deny striker Neal Maupay. Just prior to the break Albion goalkeeper David Button made an excellent save to keep out a shot from Steven Fletcher. Half-time 0-0.
Second-half saw Wednesday go close to taking the lead through the pacy Jacob Murphy and at the other end Shane Duffy's downward header from a corner was easily gathered by keeper Dawson. Eventually Wednesday took the lead on 64 minutes when Steven Alzate fouled Massimo Luongo just outside area and from the resultant free-kick substitute Sam Winnall set-up Adam Reach whose low deflected shot eluded keeper Button and ended-up in the back of the Albion net. 0-1.
Sadly the Seagulls thereafter failed to come close to equalising and at the final whistle the home supporters showed their displeasure at their teams inept performance. Final-score 0-1.
An awful display from a much-changed Albion side. No-one save for goalkeeper David Button and defender Shane Duffy enhanced their reputations. At the final whistle the Seagulls supporters showed their disapproval at what they had witnessed.
The Albion had 8 attempts at goal, with 3 on target and won 8 corners, free-kicks conceded - 13. Wednesday had 9 attempts at goal, with 4 on target and won 7 corners, free-kicks conceded - 9.
Albion line-up (3-5-2):- David Button; Shane Duffy, Leon Balogun (Aaron Connolly 46), Adam Webster; Ezequiel Schelotto, Dale Stephens (Capt), Steven Alzate, Yves Bissouma (Alireza Jahanbakhsh 63), Gaetan Bong (Bernardo 71); Pascal Gross, Neal Maupay. Subs not used: Jason Steele (G/K), Martin Montoya, Davy Propper, Alex Cochrane.
Sheffield Wednesday line-up (4-4-2):- Cameron Dawson; Osaze Urhoghide, Julian Borner, Dominic Iorfa, Morgan Fox; Kieran Lee, Adam Reach (Tom Lees 90), Joey Pelupessy, Massimo Luongo; Jacob Murphy (Kadeem Harris 71), Steven Fletcher (Sam Winnall 55). Subs not used: Joe Wildsmith (G/K), Jack Hunt, Atdhe Nuhiu, Jordan Rhodes.
Referee: Andre Marriner (West Midlands).
Yellow Cards: Albion: 1 - Neal Maupay. Sheffield Wednesday: 1 - Sam Winnall.
Possession: Albion - 54%. Sheffield Wednesday - 46%.
Match Sponsors (Tara Signs) Albion Man of the Match: Shane Duffy.