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

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

Brighton & Hove Albion travel to already-relegated Sheffield United on Saturday evening knowing that they can all but secure Premier League safety with a victory.

The Seagulls held Chelsea last time out and are seven points clear of the dropzone with a game in hand, while United's fate was sealed with defeat to Wolverhampton Wanderers.


Match preview

Danny Welbeck celebrates scoring for Brighton & Hove Albion against Manchester United in the Premier League on April 4, 2021© Reuters

Brighton may be three games without a victory, but back-to-back goalless draws against Everton and Chelsea can be considered good results in Albion's bid to avoid relegation.

Graham Potter's men have lacked consistency all campaign long, hence their position in 16th, but Fulham's inability to pick up wins means that the Seagulls should be safe.

That could all change in the space of one weekend of action, of course, as a defeat for Brighton here and a win for Fulham at Chelsea will close the gap to four points.

Albion, who went close to beating Chelsea late on at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday, still have Manchester City and top-four chasing West Ham United to face in their final five games.

Nothing can be taken for granted just yet, then, especially when you take Albion's record against this weekend's opponents into account.

Brighton have won just one of their last 11 league meetings with the Blades and have not won at Bramall Lane in the league since January 2005.

Sheffield United's Enda Stevens and teammates look dejected after Wolverhampton Wanderers' Willian Jose scored their first goal in the Premier League on April 17, 2021© Reuters

United, now under the caretaker management of Paul Heckingbottom, may have been relegated last weekend but that can so often lift the weight off the shoulders of teams.

The Yorkshire side were relegated in the joint-earliest time ever in terms of games played, and they could still go down with a record number of defeats at this rate.

Scoring goals has been a problem all season long for United, who have lost each of their last five league matches and failed to score in four of them.

Indeed, as well as being the lowest-scoring side in the Premier League this season (17 goals in total), United have failed to score in the most different games (18).

They have also kept only two clean sheets all season - another divisional low - which could be good news for Brighton on the back of two games without finding the net.

By ending that drought this weekend and coming away with three points, Potter can surely begin to prepare for another campaign of Premier League football next season.

Sheffield United Premier League form:
  • W
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • L

Sheffield United form (all competitions):
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • L

Brighton & Hove Albion Premier League form:
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • D
  • D



Team News

Adam Lallana in action for Brighton & Hove Albion in summer 2020© Reuters

Brighton will be forced into at least one change following the late red card shown to key defender Ben White late on against Chelsea earlier this week.

Joel Veltman is the most likely candidate to get the nod alongside Lewis Dunk and Adam Webster, while Dan Burn can also shift across from left wing-back to cover that position.

Adam Lallana and Neal Maupay were brought on as second-half substitutes at Stamford Bridge, but both players are pushing for a recall here, with Potter likely to tweak formation.

As for the home side, Heckingbottom's hands are tied somewhat by a long list of players in the treatment room.

Chris Basham and Sander Berge are closing in on a return but are unlikely to be considered here, while Jack O'Connell, Jack Robinson, Billy Sharp and Oli McBurnie are definitely out.

However, Heckingbottom does have the option of bringing in John Lundstram and Ben Osborn in central midfield should he wish.

David McGoldrick is almost certain to lead the line as he looks to build on a return of six Premier League goals this term, which accounts for 35% of the Blades' 2020-21 total.

Sheffield United possible starting lineup:
Ramsdale; Ampadu, Egan, Bryan; Baldock, Lundstram, Norwood, Osborn, Stevens; McGoldrick, Brewster

Brighton & Hove Albion possible starting lineup:
Sanchez; Veltman, Dunk, Webster; Gross, Lallana, Bissouma, Burn; Trossard, Welbeck; Maupay


SM words green background

We say: Sheffield United 0-1 Brighton & Hove Albion

The only real target for Sheffield United to aim for between now and the end of the season is to avoid being relegated with a Premier League record number of defeats.

Brighton are all but assured of safety but could do with another victory, which we can see them securing at Bramall Lane on Saturday with a third straight clean sheet.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting a double chance bet on a home win or an away win 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.Home/Away:data


Video prediction

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


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How you voted: Sheff Utd vs Brighton

Sheffield United
19.8%
Draw
19.8%
Brighton & Hove Albion
60.3%
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Sheffield United caretaker manager Paul Heckingbottom pictured on March 14, 2021
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Paul Heckingbottom hints at Sheffield United formation change
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