AUTHOR: Star Sports Content

STAR PREVIEW: Tottenham v Brighton

A dramatic night at Stamford Bridge gave the top four race yet another twist, and Tottenham can take advantage with victory over Brighton tonight at their new stadium.

Spurs fell to a second defeat against Manchester City in a week, but overall they’ll be the happier of the two given that they’re now in a Champions League semi-final, and results over the weekend have given them a big chance of sealing more Champions League football at their new home.

They went down 1-0 rather than 4-3 on Saturday, but they actually were more competitive than in midweek, matching Manchester City pound for pound in the shots on target and corners count, and they were also closer on the expected goals count than in midweek.

Had Michael Oliver given a second-half handball against Kyle Walker as he challenged with Dele Alli then things might well have turned out very different, but Spurs lost no shame in defeat there.

Facing Brighton is a very different task today. Chris Hughton’s men went into Saturday off the back of two bad defeats, one to Cardiff which now really puts them in peril of relegation – only three points separate them from the Welshmen. They have been bereft of attacking ideas, but a back to the wall effort on Saturday earned them a crucial point against Wolves.

That they came away with anything from the game seems like a miracle, with Mat Ryan producing a sensational performance to stop three likely goals on his own. We can expect another rearguard effort from Ryan, Bruno, Shane Duffy, Lewis Dunk and Gaetan Bong, but at some point they will have to go forward in a game.

The expected goals tally for Saturday read Wolves 2.6 and Brighton 0.12, and Brighton simply can’t hope to stay up with those sorts of numbers, or get a result against a team of Tottenham’s quality.

Heung-Min Song has filled in beautifully for Harry Kane and was unlucky not go get another goal in midweek whilst Lucas Moura has risen to the challenge and slotted in very well alongside Spurs’ new main man. Their pace, and the intricate passing of Dele Alli and Christian Eriksen will prove vital in breaking down Brighton’s deep-lying game, and they have the quality to do so.

Playing back on home turf will also be very welcome, with Spurs unbeaten in their new home. They have beaten Crystal Palace 2-0, Manchester City 1-0 and Huddersfield 4-0, and this will be the first home game since they made the semi-finals so the atmosphere ought to be rocking.

Tottenham Hotspur v Brighton & Hove Albion
Premier League
19:45 Sky Sports Premier League / Sky Sports Main Event / Sky Sports Ultra HD

HEAD TO HEAD RECORD
(Maximum 10 matches, since 2000)
SEP 2018 PREMIER LEAGUE Brighton 1-2 Tottenham
APR 2018 PREMIER LEAGUE Brighton 1-1 Tottenham
DEC 2017 PREMIER LEAGUE Tottenham 2-0 Brighton
OCT 2014 CAPITAL ONE CUP Tottenham 2-0 Brighton
JAN 2005 FA CUP Tottenham 2-1 Brighton

The visitors will aim to make this tight as possible, but the hosts have enough quality to prevent being hit on the break and should be able to strike first and then win. They can beat a one goal handicap, something they’ve done in three of their four games here.


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