Brighton vs Burnley Preview: Clarets looking to continue impressive season against Seagulls

The Clarets travel to Brighton at the weekend, looking to continue an impressive Premier League campaign.

Brighton vs Burnley Preview: Clarets looking to continue impressive season against Seagulls
[Photo via Getty Images]

Burnley travel to face Brighton & Hove Albion ​at the weekend looking to maintain what has been a thoroughly surprising Premier League ​campaign thus far. The Clarets find themselves in 6th place heading into the match, with the potential to go 4th in the league should they secure the three points. 

The weekend will see the first meeting between the two sides in the Premier League, with all prior games coming in lower leagues. Brighton haven't lost to Burnley in six league games, recording three draws in the last three games. 

 

Burnley head into the weekend in red hot form after Stoke win

Despite failing to produce the level of performance we've seen of them lately, Burnley recorded yet another win to continue their impressive start to the season, thus heading into Saturday with some real momentum behind them. Ashley Barnes' late goal secured the three points for Sean Dyche's side, nodding the ball down from a long-ball before smashing into the back of the net. 

A lack of goals has been a consistent feature of Burnley's season despite their league position, with defensive steeliness at the heart of their successes. Conceding just 12 goals this season, a record only bettered by Manchester City and Manchester United​'s respective 11 goal tally. That's put them in really good stead against the top-six, with Dyche's team proving a hard opposition to break down. Thus, Brighton will need to be on the top of their game in order to take anything from the game. 

At the other end of the pitch, forward Chris Wood has a pretty good record against The Seagulls, scoring five in his last five league games against his former-club. 

 

Brighton in desperate need of a win to get out of bad patch

Chris Hughton's side come into the game in a much less positive light, taking just two points from the last six games. Defeat on Saturday afternoon would see Brighton lose four successive games in the top flight for the first time since December 2011. 

Having started the season in a good fashion, tightening the back four to restrict the opposition to menial pot shots, The Seagulls have since shipped goals galore in defence. Conceding 13 goals in the opening 14 games, they've since let in nine in their last three to compound Hughton's woes.

At the other end of the pitch the picture isn't much rosier, with a lack of attacking nous and ingenuity seeing Brighton attempt only 142 shots on goal this season - the lowest figure in the Premier League. 

 

Team News

Brighton could recall experienced pair Glenn Murray and ​Pascal Gross having been axed in the second-half against Tottenham ​in midweek, with no fresh injury concerns to deal with prior to kick-off. 

Meanwhile, Burnley will be sweating on the fitness of Stephen Ward who will undergo a late fitness test following a knee injury. However, Ben Mee and Matt Lowton are in line for a return to action having suffered a similar injury. Robbie Brady, Jonathan Walters, Dean Marney and Tom Heaton are all long-term absentees.