Football News: Premier League Match Preview Monday 20th November 2017

 

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Premier League Match Preview Monday 20th November 2017
Image from: replacements.com

Monday 20th November 2017



Brighton & Hove Albion v Stoke City 8pm kick off

Sidwell (back injury) out

The Seagulls have had an amazingly good start to the season, despite not winning in their first 3 matches they sit in the top half and are in the midst of a 4 game unbeaten run. They are built around a solid defensive platform, but the worrying thing is that over half their goals in the entire season were scored in just 2 matches. They are struggling for goals, with just 11 scored in 11 games, even a solid defence can only do so much if you are not scoring the goals to take advantage of it. Their good start might not be enough if fortune turns against them.
Most important player: Shane Duffy. There is a lot of emphasis on Duffy and his defensive partner Lewis Dunk to keep Brighton in the game. The Irish centre half eats up high balls into the box but does struggle against quick feet running at him.


Butland (broken finger expected return 12th December) out
Cameron (concussion expected return 25th November) out
Ireland (broken leg) out
Johnson (illness) slight doubt

The Potters are struggling on the road this season, with 3 defeats and a draw in 5 games and only 5 goals scored compared to 11 conceded. Though the numbers conceded are skewed badly by the 7 they let in against Man City. They might even be showing signs of getting things together, having finally won away from home against Watford, in their previous away match. However they are not scoring enough goals, nor creating lots of chances, so there has to be worries within the ranks that what they are doing is not working. With Butland's constant injury problems meaning he is in and out of the side, they are unable to rely on his presence, which is not helping matters, but tactically they seem to be outthought more often than not.
Most important player: Ryan Shawcross. With Butland out the defence will need to be at their best to protect the back up keeper, Lee Grant. Shawcross is the leader at the back for Stoke, but he has not been himself since returning from injury. He is still like an octopus and gets away with challenges most defenders would give away penalties for, but he seems somehow diminished. Weaker, slower and less imposing than in the past. That is a huge problem for a team that has heavily relied on him in recent years.


Defining Battle: Stoke will have to play through the centre of Brighton's defence, as putting crosses into the box is meat and drink to their defenders. Brighton will want to keep compact and tight centrally and force Stoke out wide. The centre of midfield is key, the Potters will have to dominate here and drag Brighton about to create space or they will find it difficult to break through. Brighton just need to keep their shape and look to hit on the break.



Editors' Predictions:
Ed002 - 2-1
Ed003 - 1-2
Ed004 - 0-0
Ed007 - 1-1
Ed018 - 2-2
Ed025 - 1-1
Ed033 - 0-2



Editor's Predictions Table
1. Ed018 - 66 points
2. Ed033 - 64 points
3. Ed003 - 58 points
4= Ed004 - 55 points
4= Ed002 - 55 points
6. Ed025 - 54 points
7. Ed007 - 53 points


*1 point is awarded for the correct result, 3 points for the correct score.
**updated 17th November 2017

Written by Tris Burke



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