Chivers: Albion can head to the Bridge with confidence

Gary Chivers says Graham Potter’s side can head into Saturday’s game at Stamford Bridge with confidence, and praised the job which the former Swansea boss has already done on the south coast.

By James Hilsum • 26 September 2019

By Paul Hazlewood
Gary Chivers

Albion meet Chelsea in a 3pm kick-off this weekend, and the former Seagulls and Blues defender identified how Potter’s men can impose themselves on the game.

He said, “Brighton have been unlucky in a couple of games where they could’ve taken all three points but haven’t, and ended up either drawing or losing. Having said that, I believe Graham Potter is doing a great job in his first Premier League role, and you can see that he’s getting on with the players by what’s being produced on the pitch.

“I can see Albion causing Chelsea problems with their height and aerial ability from set plays, free kicks and dead-ball situations. If there’s one thing about this Chelsea side, they’re not good at defending from set pieces.

“Brighton will have nothing to lose on Saturday. I’ve seen teams come to the Bridge, they defend for the whole game and what’s going to happen? Chelsea are going to nick one or two goals in the end, and they still end up losing the game.”

The former defender admires the way Potter has quickly implemented a brand new style of play and feels the decision to play three at the back is starting to reap its rewards.

“It’s very hard to come in and change the way a team plays,” he continued.

“He’s managed to do that, and the players have bought into it brilliantly. The three at the back are outstanding no matter who plays.

“They’re all decent on the ball and he’s changed the way we shut down the opposition from the front. The players are going after the ball, and that’s something which is very encouraging to see if you’re a fan.”

By Rex/Shutterstock
Frank Lampard

Attention turned to Chelsea’s progress under Frank Lampard, and Chivers feels the Blues legend will be cut plenty of slack due to his cult-hero status in west London.

“They’re definitely in a transitional stage, but they will be fighting tooth and nail for Frank Lampard. The kids that have come in, the likes of Mason Mount and Tammy Abraham, who have played at the likes of Derby and Aston Villa, have done brilliantly.

“The fans will give Frank a lot of time because he was such a fantastic player and is a fantastic person. Appointing him is the best move Chelsea could’ve made because he loves the club, and knows the ins and outs of the club.

“You can see that these players are playing for him. They’re a young side that are going to make mistakes, and Frank will too because this is only his second season as a manager, but the fans adore him and they will give him time.”

With Chivers working in the hospitality lounges at both Albion and Chelsea, his loyalties are split in terms of predicting a result, so he's hoping for a high-scoring draw.

“I work at Chelsea and I work at Brighton, so I sit on the fence like a good person would do. I don’t know one side from the other.

“People will see me in the stand and notice that I don’t celebrate in these games, regardless of who scores. I hope it’s a 6-6 draw and everyone has a fantastic time!”