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Preview: West Bromwich Albion vs. Brighton & Hove Albion - prediction, team news, lineups

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

Two teams in desperate need of three points will lock horns at the Hawthorns on Saturday afternoon as West Bromwich Albion welcome Brighton & Hove Albion in the Premier League.

West Brom are currently 19th in the table, 11 points behind 17th-placed Newcastle United, while Brighton are 16th in England's top flight, just four points clear of the relegation zone.


Match preview

West Bromwich Albion's Mbaye Diagne celebrates scoring against Manchester United in the Premier League on February 14, 2021© Reuters

West Brom's situation in the Premier League is not quite terminal, but it would be fair to say that a huge turnaround would have to take place for the Baggies to escape the relegation zone.

Indeed, a record of two wins, eight draws and 15 defeats from 25 matches has left them in 19th position in the table, 11 points behind 17th-placed Newcastle on the same number of matches, while they are also eight points from 18th-placed Fulham, who are now threatening to pull themselves out of the drop zone.

West Brom have certainly shown signs of improvement in recent matches, impressing in a 1-1 draw with Manchester United on February 14 before picking up a point against Burnley last weekend.

Sam Allardyce's side are without a victory in the league since the middle of January, though, and have won just twice in England's top flight all season, which is an indication of just how much they have struggled.

A win over Brighton would certainly boost their chances of survival, and they recorded a 2-0 victory over the Seagulls when the two teams last met at the Hawthorns in the Premier League in January 2018.

Brighton & Hove Albion's Alexis Mac Allister in action with Aston Villa's Emiliano Martinez in the Premier League on February 13, 2021© Reuters

Brighton have impressed many with their football this season, but there is no question that Graham Potter's side are in a relegation battle as they sit just four points clear of 18th-placed Fulham on the same number of games.

The Seagulls have lost just nine of their 25 league matches this term, which is far from disastrous, but too many draws (11) have prevented them from pushing higher up the table.

Potter's team recorded back-to-back wins over Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool on January 31 and February 3 respectively, but they have picked up just two points from their three games since and suffered a surprise 2-1 home defeat to Crystal Palace on Monday night.

The two teams appeared to be sharing the points at the Amex Stadium, but Christian Benteke's 95th-minute winner secured a huge three points for Palace and left Brighton looking over their shoulders.

The Seagulls have been relatively solid on their travels this term, picking up 16 points from 12 matches, and they will be taking on a West Brom side with the worst home record in this season's Premier League.

West Bromwich Albion Premier League form: LDLLDD

Brighton & Hove Albion Premier League form: DWWDDL
Brighton & Hove Albion form (all competitions): WWDLDL


Team News

West Bromwich Albion's Semi Ajayi is shown a red card by referee Mike Dean on February 20, 2021© Reuters

West Brom will be without the services of Semi Ajayi following his red card against Burnley, meaning that Dara O'Shea should feature in the middle of the defence alongside Kyle Bartley.

Allardyce revealed on Thursday afternoon that Robert Snodgrass would not be risked against Brighton due to a calf problem, meaning that Matt Phillips should retain his spot in the side.

Kieran Gibbs is also still out, but Lee Peltier and Grady Diangana are both in contention for the strugglers, having returned from recent injuries to make the squad against the Clarets.

As for Brighton, Jose Izquierdo, Florin Andone, Solly March and Adam Webster are unavailable for selection, but Potter revealed on Thursday that Tariq Lamptey would be part of the squad this weekend.

The Seagulls have plenty of options for change, with Danny Welbeck and Adam Lallana just two of the players pushing for positions in the starting XI this weekend.

Potter is expected to resist the temptation to shuffle his pack from the Palace loss, though, meaning that Neal Maupay should keep his spot alongside Leandro Trossard in attack.

West Bromwich Albion possible starting lineup:
Johnstone; Furlong, O'Shea, Bartley, Townsend; Pereira, Maitland-Niles, Yokuslu, Gallagher, Phillips; Diagne

Brighton & Hove Albion possible starting lineup:
Sanchez; Veltman, White, Dunk, Burn; Alzate, Bissouma, Gross; Mac Allister; Maupay, Trossard


SM words green background

We say: West Bromwich Albion 0-0 Brighton & Hove Albion

Both sides desperately need the three points, but we are struggling to separate them in this match. The pair shared the points at the Amex earlier this season, while they have 19 league draws between them in 2020-21. A goalless draw would not be welcomed by either manager, but we are backing the stalemate here.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting 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.Away Win:data


Video prediction

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


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Brighton & Hove Albion manager Graham Potter pictured in February, 2021
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12Wolverhampton WanderersWolves32118133241-941
13Crystal Palace31108133352-1938
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15Newcastle UnitedNewcastle3298153553-1835
16Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton31712123338-533
17Burnley3189142542-1733
18Fulham32511162442-1826
19West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom3159172859-3124
RSheffield UnitedSheff Utd3242261756-3914

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