EPL: Chelsea face Brighton hurdle

first_imgRelatedPosts Lampard: I still have confidence in Tomori Ighalo: My best moment as ‘Red Devil’ Mane double eases Liverpool to win over 10-man Chelsea Brighton vs. Chelsea Venue: Amex Stadium Kick off: 1:30PMChelsea make the trip to the Amex Stadium to face Brighton & Hove Albion this afternoon looking to strengthen their grip on fourth position in the Premier League standings. While Chelsea have been hampered by their lack of consistency since the arrival of Frank Lampard, the presence of the club legend has also played a pivotal part in the team’s ability to frequently bounce back from setbacks with significant wins. During a period where they have lost at home to Bournemouth and Southampton without troubling the scoresheet, Chelsea have recorded maximum points at the grounds of Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal. To some degree, witnessing his players perform with class against Spurs and sheer desire versus the Gunners will frustrate Lampard, who did not hide his disappointment after the previous defeats at Stamford Bridge. Nevertheless, the Englishman will at least feel optimistic for the future as the club look to close the gap on second and third place, while also defending their hold on fourth position. While achieving Champions League football for next season has become the natural priority target, Lampard will feel that this side is capable of more if they can maintain a high level over a prolonged period. Most of the attention this season has been focused on a misfiring backline and a youthful attack, but Jorginho reiterated his importance to the team and squad in general at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday. Despite the Italian being fortunate to remain on the pitch during the closing stages, his presence after his introduction settled the Blues down at a time when their opponents could have effectively ended the game as a contest. The performance creates a selection dilemma for Lampard going forward, although it is one which he will like having when no-one in his squad is producing the consistency he is demanding. Chelsea travel to the south coast having now won seven of their 10 away matches in this season’s Premier League, although that record will not intimidate Graham Potter’s Brighton squad. While the Seagulls have only registered four wins at the Amex Stadium from 10 attempts, their style of play has regularly caused problems for their opponents this season, regardless of their position in the table. That said, Brighton desperately needed their success against Bournemouth at the weekend after falling to within a defeat of being pulled into the bottom three. There is the perception that Brighton are a team on the up under Potter, something which may be the case, but a four-match winless streak had highlighted the need for results over displays which are easy on the eye. The manner of the victory over the Cherries delivered both of those aspects, with Alireza Jahanbakhsh and Aaron Mooy scoring brilliantly-taken individual goals to get off the mark for the season. With more breathing space to work with, Potter will now hope that his players can replicate that performance four days later against Chelsea, who outplayed them at Stamford Bridge earlier in the campaign. There is also the added motivation of trying to record back-to-back Premier League wins for just the second time this season – something which has not been achieved since the start of November. Given that Chelsea have also not put together successive triumphs since October 26, the opportunity is there to get another three points on the board, which would ultimately leave Brighton not far away from the top 10. Brighton possible XI: Ryan, Montoya, Webster, Dunk, Burn, Bissouma, Propper, Trossard, Mooy, Jahanbakhsh, Maupay. Chelsea possible XI: Arrizabalaga, Azpilicueta, Rudiger, Zouma, Palmieri, Kante, Jorginho, Kovacic, Mount, Hudson-Odoi, Abraham.Tags: AMex StadiumBrightonChelseaFrank LampardPremier LeagueTottenham Hotspurlast_img

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