Match Preview: Brighton & Hove Albion

One of my first memories lower league football involves Brighton & Hove Albion. The club were battling to avoid relegation to the Conference and faced Hereford at home needing to avoid defeat in order to survive in the Football League at the Bulls expense. In their last ever game at the Goldstone Ground, The Seagulls managed a 1-1 draw, enough to survive on goals scored. For reasons that will become apparent later, Micky Adams will be glad such metrics are no longer used in league tables.

Previous Meetings
Leicester last trip to the Withdean Staduim came in February 2006. Early strikes from Paddy McCarthy and Ian Hume put the Foxes 2-0 up inside five minutes. Despite a second half goal from Alexandre Frutos, City held on for a 2-1 win.

The Withdean has proven a fruitful hunting ground in recent years. Leicester have taken seven points in their last three visits to Brighton’s “temporary” home. Brighton haven’t beaten Leicester at home in the League since 1991.

Reasons To Be Confident
Brighton have managed just 13 goals in 13 league games this season. Only three teams in League One (Yeovil, Leyton Orient and Hereford) have proven more inept in this department.

The Seagulls are now 10 games without a win in League One, the longest winless sequence in the division. Better yet for City, Brighton are yet to win a league match in front of their own fans in 2008/09.

Brighton have not scored in the last three games. Only one player, Glenn Murray, has scored for Brighton in their last seven league outings.

Reasons To Be Worried
Three successive draws have begun to raise doubts within the Leicester faithful. Whilst it probably helps Leicester to play away from home at the moment, you have to wonder whether a few of the younger players are starting to feel some pressure.

Despite failing to score in their last three games, it should be noted that Brighton also only conceded one goal in that same period. Leicester cannot afford to waste their chances.

When you need a win, it does not bode well to travel to League One’s draw experts. Brighton have seven draws (including three goalless draws) to their name already this campaign, over 40% of the way towards matching Bristol Rovers’ 17 draws of 2007/08.

On This Day
Goals from Muzzy Izzet and Arnar Gunnlaugsson silenced the Rams on this day in 2000 as Leicester climbed to third in the Premier League table. Rory Delap, who had yet to discover his abilities as conjurer of enormous throw-ins, gave Derby the lead in the 12th minute. Peter Taylor’s side fought back to leave City on 19 points from 11 games. Derby remained bottom.

Selected Odds
Brighton – 9/4 (Bet365)
Draw – 12/5 (Paddy Power)
Leicester – 5/4 (Betfred)

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