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Preview: Brighton & Hove Albion vs. Everton - prediction, team news, lineups
27/08/2021 15:04:59

Brighton & Hove Albion will be looking to make it three wins from three matches at the start of the 2021-22 Premier League season when they welcome Everton to the Amex on Saturday afternoon (3:00PM, 28 Aug).

The Seagulls are currently fourth in the table on six points, while Everton have also made an encouraging start, collecting four points from their two fixtures under Rafael Benitez's leadership.

Match preview

Brighton finished 16th in the Premier League last season, winning just nine of their 38 matches, but Graham Potter's side have already put two victories on the board in 2021-22, opening with a 2-1 success at Burnley on the opening weekend before recording a 2-0 victory over Watford last weekend.

The Seagulls also ran out 2-0 winners over Cardiff City in the second round of the EFL Cup on Tuesday night, meaning that confidence should be flowing at the Amex.

Brighton have boosted their transfer budget this summer by selling Ben White to Arsenal for £50m, and the club are expected to make at least one more major signing before the transfer window closes, with Enock Mwepu, Kjell Scherpen and Kaoru Mitoma their only arrivals thus far.

Potter's side only recorded four home Premier League victories last season, and they will have to improve their results at the Amex if they have ambitions of pushing towards the top half of the table.

Brighton played out a goalless draw with Everton in the corresponding match last term, but they have lost two of their last three matches against the Toffees, who should also be in full confidence.

Everton, meanwhile, opened their 2021-22 Premier League campaign with a 3-1 victory over Southampton on August 14 before claiming a point in a 2-2 draw with Leeds United last weekend.

The Toffees twice led at Elland Road through Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Demarai Gray but were pegged back on both occasions; there were again plenty of positive signs from the Merseyside outfit, with Benitez overseeing a strong start, boasting two wins from three matches.

Indeed, Everton were also in EFL Cup action against Huddersfield Town on Tuesday night, recording a 2-1 win over the Championship outfit courtesy of goals from Alex Iwobi and Andros Townsend.

Benitez's side will know that another positive result on Saturday afternoon would lead them nicely into their next match after the international break, which comes at home to Burnley on September 13.

The Toffees have been relatively quiet during this summer's transfer window, but Gray's arrival from Bayer Leverkusen looks to have been an inspired signing, with the 25-year-old impressing thus far.

Team News

Brighton boss Potter is hopeful that Maupay will be involved against Everton, with the striker winning his battle to overcome the shoulder problem that he suffered against Watford.

Danny Welbeck could return to the bench, but Mwepu only has an outside chance of being involved, while Joel Veltman, Tariq Lamptey, Dan Burn and Scherpen are still unavailable for selection.

Potter is again likely to select Pascal Gross and Alexis Mac Allister in the wide areas against the Toffees, with Yves Bissouma and Adam Lallana set to feature in the middle of the park.

Everton will be without the services of Moise Kean due to the red card that the forward picked up against Huddersfield, while Iwobi suffered a groin problem in the same match and could now miss out.

James Rodriguez is also unlikely to be involved amid the speculation surrounding his future, but Benitez still has plenty of options in the forward areas.

Aside from Iwobi, who could be replaced by Townsend, the team might be unchanged from the Premier League clash with Leeds, with Richarlison operating just behind Calvert-Lewin.

Allan and Abdoulaye Doucoure should feature as the two central midfielders, with Lucas Digne and Seamus Coleman being named in the full-back positions.

Brighton & Hove Albion possible starting lineup:

Sanchez; Webster, Duffy, Dunk, March; Gross, Lallana, Bissouma, Mac Allister; Trossard; Maupay

Everton possible starting lineup:

Pickford; Coleman, Mina, Keane, Digne; Townsend, Doucoure, Allan, Gray; Richarlison; Calvert-Lewin

We say: Brighton & Hove Albion 1-1 Everton

Both of these sides have impressed in the early stages of the season, and we are expecting a tight match on Saturday afternoon. It would not be a surprise to see either a home win or an away win, but we have ultimately settled on a low-scoring draw at the Amex.

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