MX23RW : Wednesday, September 29 03:15:12| >> :120:12688:12688:
Sep 26, 2020 at 12.30pm UK at The American Express Community Stadium
BrightonBrighton & Hove Albion
2-3
Man UtdManchester United
Maupay (40' pen.), March (90+5')
Trossard (42'), White (74'), Dunk (83'), Jahanbakhsh (90+10')
FT(HT: 1-1)
Dunk (43' og.), Rashford (55'), Fernandes (90+10' pen.)
Fernandes (22'), Matic (41')

Preview: Brighton & Hove Albion vs. Manchester United - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's Premier League clash between Brighton & Hove Albion and Manchester United, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Manchester United will look to get off the mark in the Premier League at the second time of asking this Saturday when they take on Brighton & Hove Albion at the Amex Stadium.

Both sides beat Championship opposition away from home in the EFL Cup in midweek, but they suffered contrasting fortunes in their last league games with Brighton beating Newcastle United and Man United losing at home to Crystal Palace.


Match preview

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer pictured in September 2020© Reuters

After a summer of frustration in the transfer market and off-field headlines for the wrong reasons surrounding a couple of their key players, Manchester United would have been desperate to get off to a positive start when their Premier League campaign belatedly got underway last weekend.

Safe to say, that did not prove to be the case; a 3-1 home defeat to Crystal Palace only increased the scrutiny on United's summer dealings and undermined their hopes of closing the gap on the top two after a third-placed finish last time out.

It was only the third time that United had lost their opening home Premier League game, and it was also the first time Palace had scored more than twice in their past 40 league games, shining a light on the Red Devils' defensive options.

A couple of controversial VAR calls - first to award Palace a penalty and then order a retake for David de Gea straying marginally off his line - left a taste of injustice, although Palace's third goal drove home the point that United did not do enough to get anything from the match.

The result only serves to heap more pressure on bouncing back this weekend, particularly with Tottenham Hotspur, Chelsea and Arsenal to come in three of their next four league games after this one.

Marcus Rashford celebrates scoring with Manchester United teammates against Luton Town on September 22, 2020© Reuters

United did at least pick up their first win of the season away at Luton Town in midweek, running out 3-0 winners in a scoreline somewhat embellished by late goals from Marcus Rashford and Mason Greenwood.

That victory was Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's 50th as Manchester United boss across all competitions - a milestone he has reached quicker than Sir Alex Ferguson or Sir Matt Busby managed.

Indeed, his tally of 92 games in which to chalk up 50 wins is behind only Ernest Mangnall (78) and Jose Mourinho (81) in the United history books, yet anything other than a 51st win at the helm this weekend may just prompt more whispers regarding his suitability for the role.

The win over Luton set United on course for another potential clash with Saturday's opponents, and Brighton's triumph over Preston North End one day later confirmed that these two will face off twice in the space of just a few days, both games coming at the Amex.

Brighton will go into what would ordinarily be a daunting double-header full of confidence, not least as they have won two of their three Premier League home games against United.

Brighton & Hove Albion players celebrate a goal against Preston North End in the third round of the EFL cup on September 23, 2020© Reuters

The corresponding fixture last season was the exception to that as United ran out comfortable 3-0 winners, but that was their first league triumph away to Brighton since 1982 and the Seagulls go into this weekend's clash in good form.

Like Saturday's opponents, Brighton began their campaign with a 3-1 home loss, but they still managed to impress in that match against Chelsea and since then have chalked up three wins in a row by an aggregate scoreline of 9-0.

EFL Cup victories over Portsmouth and Preston sandwich last weekend's 3-0 triumph at Newcastle, which saw Neal Maupay score twice in the opening seven minutes before Aaron Connolly completed the job late on.

It is home form in the league which will be the biggest concern for Graham Potter at this stage, with the opening-day defeat to Chelsea leaving them with only one point from the last 15 available at the Amex and only one win in 10 top-flight home outings this calendar year.

By contrast, United are unbeaten on the road since January - a seven-game run which includes clean sheets in each of their last four such outings.

Brighton & Hove Albion Premier League form: LW
Brighton & Hove Albion form (all competitions): LWWW

Manchester United Premier League form: L
Manchester United form (all competitions): LW


Team News

Donny van de Beek celebrates scoring for Manchester United against Crystal Palace on September 19, 2020© Reuters

One of the few positives to take from Manchester United's defeat to Palace last weekend was a goal for debutant Donny van de Beek, who will be pushing for his first Premier League start here.

Whether Solskjaer chooses to use him in a slightly deeper role alongside Paul Pogba remains to be seen, though, with his usual spot in attacking midfield seemingly taken by Bruno Fernandes.

Greenwood and Rashford both came off the bench to score in midweek and are expected to be among a host of first-teamers restored to the starting XI.

De Gea is likely to be one of those despite conceding three times in their opening match and Dean Henderson pulling off a fine save to keep a clean sheet against Luton.

Axel Tuanzebe and Phil Jones are both sidelined, while Chris Smalling is unlikely to be selected as he continues to be linked with a move away.

Brighton will be without Yves Bissouma after he was sent off for his accidental-but-dangerous kick to the face of Jamal Lewis during last weekend's win at Newcastle.

Connolly and the impressive Tariq Lamptey are both minor doubts who are expected to shake off their problems and be available.

Jose Izquierdo, Florin Andone and Christian Walton are all sidelined, though, while Dale Stephens is expected to complete his switch to Burnley before this contest.

Brighton & Hove Albion possible starting lineup:
Ryan; White, Dunk, Webster; Lamptey, Propper, Alzate, March; Trossard, Connolly, Maupay

Manchester United possible starting lineup:
De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Shaw; Pogba, Van de Beek; Greenwood, Fernandes, Rashford; Martial


SM words green background

We say: Brighton & Hove Albion 1-1 Manchester United

This could be a fascinating contest and, given last weekend's results, one which United fans are particularly wary of. The Red Devils did not look good at home to Crystal Palace, and on paper this is arguably an even tougher match.

Brighton are in good form and were slightly unfortunate with the result against Chelsea on the opening day, so we can see them getting something out of this game.


Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data


Video prediction

Watch the Sports Mole Football Shorts prediction for this game below:


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Brighton boss Graham Potter on July 20, 2020
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Brighton season preview - predictions, fixtures, summer signings, starting XI
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Todays Game Header Right
Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Liverpool64201541114
2Manchester CityMan City64111211113
3Chelsea64111221013
4Manchester UnitedMan Utd6411135813
5Everton6411127513
6Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton641185313
7West Ham UnitedWest Ham6321138511
8Aston Villa631297210
9Brentford62318539
10Arsenal6303510-59
11Tottenham HotspurSpurs630349-59
12Watford621379-27
13Leicester CityLeicester6213710-37
14Wolverhampton WanderersWolves620435-26
15Crystal Palace613269-36
16Southampton604247-34
17Newcastle UnitedNewcastle6033714-73
18Leeds UnitedLeeds6033614-83
19Burnley6024511-62
20Norwich CityNorwich6006216-140

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