Brighton & Hove Albion defender Lewis Dunk revealed that tomorrow’s game with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge is one he looked out for due to personal reasons.
The central defender shed light on how both he and his family have another blue allegiance in the Premier League, reflected on their season so far, and analysed what Albion needed to do in order to get a result in west London.
He said, “As a Chelsea fan it’s definitely a fixture I looked out for, most of my family support them and it falls on Boxing Day as well which is a good day for football.
“They’ve been a bit hit and miss so far this season, but they’re still one of the top sides in the country and they’ve got some great individuals who can change matches very quickly.
“To get something at Stamford Bridge you have to stop their attacking players getting into the holes and providing service for the players up top.
“You have to try and deny them as much space as possible and try to show them wide.”
The Seagulls play four games in nine days over this festive period, with the challenge of Antonio Conte’s men being the second match of the side’s Christmas schedule.
Albion went into Saturday’s game at home to Watford in 13th position in the top flight approaching the halfway point of their debut season in the division, and the defender believes the team can be satisfied with their efforts so far.
“It’s been a fairly good season and we’re about on target for where we want to be.
“We’ve had a tough run lately, but we’ve also been in every game as well.
“We’ve had good opportunities within matches to take more points too, and so on the whole I think we’ve done well in our first Premier League season.
“We’ll take away those positives, but I also feel that we perhaps need to kill games off a little better as well, as there’s been matches where we could have got more. When the opportunity is there to kill games off, we have to take it, as three points in this league is massive.”
Tomorrow’s game against the Blues will mean that the team have played every opponent once so far, and the defender firmly believes the Seagulls have what it takes to be established in England’s top division.
“I think everyone’s learning and getting more confident in every game. You have to be confident on the ball in this division and I think we’re doing that.
“Things change within games very quickly and concentration is key in this league. If you give an opponent even a half chance at this level they’ll take it and that’s probably the biggest difference to last year in the Championship.
“Staying up has to be our aim – any club who comes up in their first season has that objective and then you want to build from there afterwards.
“I think our solid base and foundations as a side, as well as our togetherness as a team will see us do that.”
Albion supporters with a Segaulls TV pass can watch Lewis Dunk's full look ahead to the game with Chelsea with a FREE PASS by clicking here.