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Preview: Mac Allister available for visit to the Blades

Albion are back in Premier League action this Saturday afternoon as they make the trip to South Yorkshire to take on Sheffield United at Bramall Lane.

By Alex Stedman • 20 February 2020

By Paul Hazlewood
Alexis Mac Allister in training with Albion this week.

The Seagulls were last in Premier League action just under a fortnight ago, hosting Watford at the Amex. Abdoulaye Doucoure fired the Hornets in front with a long-range effort after 19 minutes but Adrian Mariappa turned Alireza Jahnabkhsh’s cross past Ben Foster 12 minutes from time to earn Albion a deserved 1-1 draw.

Chris Wilder’s men currently occupy sixth place in the table and were 2-1 winners over AFC Bournemouth last time out. Callum Wilson put the Cherries into the lead, but goals from Billy Sharp and John Lundstram turned the contest around for United in front of their own supporters. 

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Highlights: Albion 1 Watford 1

Team news...

Graham Potter confirmed that a decision would be made on Dale Stephens, Tariq Lamptey and Alexis Mac Allister ahead of the weekend when he met the media on Thursday afternoon. Jose Izquierdo remains sidelined for the game. 

He said, "He’s [Mac Allister] had a good few days training and looked good. We have a good squad available for the game this weekend and we’ll make a decision tomorrow, but he’s an intelligent footballer.

"Tariq [Lamptey] is a great person who is always looking to learn and improve. He brings something different to a certain extent – he’s sharp and explosive with his pace and is another we’ll make a decision on tomorrow. 

"Jose [Izquierdo] is still away but has made good progress and was out on the field during the recent break with the team, but he won’t make the squad. Dale [Stephens] will probably miss out but we’ll make a decision on Friday.”

Wilder confirmed that the hosts have no injury concerns for the weekend's game when he spoke in pre-match press conference. He said, "We have a full squad to choose from which is a fantastic position to be in. It speaks volume of the group that they’re fit, healthy and raring to go."

By Paul Hazlewood
Alireza Jahanbakhsh delivers the cross that Mariappa turned into his own net.

Our last fixture…

Albion 1
Marriapa (OG, 78)

Watford 1
Doucoure (19)

Albion line-up: Ryan; Schelotto (Jahanbakhsh 73), Duffy, Dunk, Burn (Maupay 57), March; Mooy, Propper; Gross (Alzate 61), Murray, Trossard.

Subs not used: Button, Webster, Bernardo, Connolly.

Their last fixture…

Sheffield United 2
Sharp (45)
Lundstram (84)

AFC Bournemouth 1
Wilson (45)

Sheffield United line-up: Henderson; Baldock, O’Connell, Basham, Egan, Stevens; Fleck, Norwood, Berge (Lundstram 61); McBurnie, Sharp (Mousset 74).

Subs not used: Verrips, Jagielka, Retsos, Osborn, McGoldrick.

The Sheffield United player to watch…

By Paul Hazlewood
John Lundstram tussles with Dan Burn at the Amex back in December.

John Lundstram has been an influential figure for the Blades so far this season, scoring four goals in 25 matches in the top flight. The 26-year-old midfielder joined United from Oxford United following Sheffield United’s promotion to the Championship ahead of the 2017-18 campaign. 

Lundstram netted the decisive goal against Crystal Palace in a 1-0 win back in August, before notching a brace in the 3-0 home win over Burnley at the start of November. He also scored the decisive goal in the most recent victory over AFC Bournemouth at Bramall Lane two weeks ago.  

Did you know?

Bramall Lane is one of only two grounds to have hosted England’s cricket and football teams. A Test match against Australia took place there in 1902 and England played five internationals there before the 1930s.

Yorkshire played county cricket matches there until 1973 before the South Stand was built on the site of the cricket square. 

Our record against the Blades

Saturday’s fixture is the 29th between the clubs, who first met in 1922 when Albion beat United 1-0 at the Goldstone in the FA Cup. Of the 28 games so far, Albion have won nine and there have been six draws.

The Seagulls’ last win there was in 2005 when goals from Richard Carpenter and Leon Knight – in stoppage time – secured a 2-1 success. Albion also won there in 1978 and 1986, both 1-0.

Heading to the game? Click here to read Sheffield United's visitors guide.

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