Everton vs Brighton & Hove Albion Preview: Blues look to get back to winning ways against soaring Seagulls
Photo: Getty Images - Everton FC/Tony McArdle

Everton vs Brighton & Hove Albion Preview: Blues look to get back to winning ways against soaring Seagulls

A preview of Everton's meeting with Brighton & Hove Albion.

Connor Bennett

Everton welcome Brighton and Hove Albion to Goodison Park looking to get back to winning ways after seeing their winning run come to an end.

The Blues suffered an unlucky defeat away to Manchester United last time out, ending their bid to extend a three-game winning streak.

They face no easy test against the soaring Seagulls who are looking to win their third Premier League game on the spin.

Chris Hughton’s side have started the new campaign in fine form, picking up impressive home wins against Manchester United and Wolves.

Last time on the road, they ground out a workmanlike 1-0 win over Newcastle United where they lost the possession battle 70% to 30% and allowed the home side to have close to 30 shots.

Marco Silva’s side have their work cut out for themselves on Saturday afternoon.

Last meeting: Second-half show secures points for Blues

The last time the two teams met, the Blues picked up a 2-0 win at Goodison Park thanks to a goal from Cenk Tosun and a Gaetan Bong own goal.

It was a much-needed three points for then-boss Sam Allardyce’s team as pressure was beginning to grow from fans towards the club as they wanted to see the back of the former Bolton Wanderers manager.

The hosts started well but failed to make their first-half pressure pay, leaving the home faithful anxious going into the second-half.

They had their goal shortly after the half-time interval when a Yannick Bolasie cross aimed for Tosun, found Theo Walcott who then in-turn found the backside of Bong and the back of the net.

Tosun wrapped up the three points with just over ten minutes to play when he, unmarked on the edge of the 18-yard-box, pinged his shot off the underside of the crossbar and past a beaten Mathew Ryan.

Wayne Rooney had the chance to add a third goal late for the Blues but saw his spot-kick spotted by the formidable Ryan.

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A look at: Brighton & Hove Albion

Hughton’s Seagulls currently sit just outside the top ten of the Premier League table, in 11th, with 14 points. They are only a solitary point behind their hosts for the weekend.

They are currently in the midst of a three-game winning run that includes victories over Wolves, Newcastle and West Ham United.

At the AMEX, the Seagulls are extremely formidable but found plenty of struggles away from home - winning only one game from five.

They have suffered three defeats on their travels against Watford, Liverpool and Manchester City whilst also claiming a late point away at Southampton.

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Key Men

Everton: Gomes

In his first two Everton games, Andre Gomes has received high praise from all corners of the Blues fanbase.

The Portuguese midfielder, who is on loan until the end of the season, is looking to kickstart his career after stalling with his move to Barcelona.

On his Goodison debut in the win over Crystal Palace, the 25-year-old was influential in almost everything the Blues did. His performance in last weeks defeat was more of the same but his rustiness began to show late.

Against the Eagles, he will be tasked of helping find a way through a tricky and compact team who won’t allow him to have an easy afternoon.

It’s a ‘proper’ Premier League test and one he will have to overcome.

Brighton: Murray

Glenn Murray currently finds himself joint-second in the Premier League goalscoring charts with six-goals from ten games so far this term.

He has, however, failed to score away from home during open play so far this season.

The 35-year-old has also had limited success against the Blues. In his six appearances against this weekends hosts, he is yet to register a goal.

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Team News and Predicted XI’s

Everton’s relatively clean bill of health has maintained itself for another weekend as Marco Silva will only be without three players - Phil Jagielka, Jonjoe Kenny and James McCarthy.

McCarthy, who is continuing his return to fitness, completed a run-out with the Blues’ under-23 squad last Friday night at Goodison.

Yerry Mina, who is now fit and available for the hosts, is likely to keep his role on the substitutes bench before making his full-Everton debut next weekend.

The summer signing has made a full recovery from his early-season foot injury but the fine form of Michael Keane and Kurt Zouma has meant he has to watch from the sidelines. With Zouma ineligible for next weekend’s trip to Chelsea, Mina will get his chance sooner rather than later.

The Seagulls will be without Pascal Grob and Davy Propper for the trip to Merseyside.

Grob and Propper are expected to return after the upcoming international break.

Everton: Pickford, Coleman, Digne, Zouma, Keane, Gueye, Gomes, Sigurdsson, Bernard, Richarlison, Tosun.

Brighton: Ryan, Bruno, Bong, Duffy, Dunk, Stephens, Kayal, March, Izquierdo, Jahanbakhsh, Murray.

Referee: David Coote

Match Day Stats

  1. Everton are unbeaten in four games against Brighton - winning two and drawing the other pair of games.

  2. A goal for the hosts will mark the tenth successive home game in which they have scored. The last time they went better than that was an eleven game run between October 2015 and February 2016.

  3. Brighton have kept a clean sheet in each of their last three Premier League games - more than they had in their previous 24 games in the competition.