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Match Previews

PREVIEW: EVERTON V ALBION

1 November 2018

Linton Rogers
Albion travel to Goodison Park on Saturday afternoon.

Brighton & Hove Albion head to Goodison Park in excellent confidence after recording three consecutive victories and clean sheets in the Premier League, but Everton will be looking to seal their third home win on the bounce, kick-off 3pm.

The Toffees sit just one point and two places above Chris Hughton’s team ahead of this weekend’s game, but the Merseyside club tasted defeat on their most recent Premier League outing, losing 2-1 to Manchester United.

Albion were the only side to keep an unbeaten record throughout October, winning all three of their matches 1-0 to match the hat-trick of top-flight victories they last secured back in 1981.

The three clean sheets recorded over recent weeks have provided Hughton’s side with a solid platform to secure maximum points and the Seagulls will go in search of their first-ever victory at Goodison Park.

TEAM NEWS:

Hughton confirmed Pascal Gross remains sidelined and will miss Saturday's match, but is hopeful of having the German back after the international break and hasn't fully ruled him out of returning before then.

Davy Propper will also miss Saturday's game and Hughton is also hopeful of seeing the Dutchman return in time for Leicester City's visit towards the end of the month.

James McCarthy is the only injury doubt for the Toffees - the midfielder stepped up his return to fitness with game time for the club's under-23 side.




FORM:

The Seagulls took nine points from nine throughout October, starting with a 1-0 victory over West Ham United at the Amex Stadium, where Glenn Murray’s clinical finish took him to 99 goals for the club.

Murray went after his record-breaking 100th goal at Newcastle United, but the striker suffered concussion after an aerial collision and Hughton’s side played out the remainder of the game without the frontman.

But it didn’t prevent the Seagulls from ending their wait for a Premier League away victory, as Jose Izquierdo’s half-volley struck Beram Kayal before finding the back of the net to win 1-0.

Murray returned for the visit of Wolves last Saturday, and he produced the game-winning moment to become the club’s post-war record goalscorer and seal a hat-trick of league wins for his team.

The Toffees won two of their three Premier League matches in October, one of which came at Leicester City as Marco Silva’s side won 2-1 thanks to goals from Gylfi Sigurdsson and Richarlison.

Their home game against Crystal Palace looked to be heading towards a goalless draw, but late strikes from Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Cenk Tosun sealed a 2-0 win after Jordan Pickford saved a penalty.

October ended in defeat for Everton when they made the relatively short trip to Old Trafford — Sigurdsson scored from the penalty spot after goals from Paul Pogba and Anthony Martial, but Silva’s side couldn’t find a second goal to level.

LAST TIME WE MET:

Albion’s seven-game unbeaten run came to an end at Goodison Park when Hughton’s side visited for the first time in the Premier League back in March.

The Seagulls had just beaten Arsenal 2-1 at the Amex Stadium, but Tosun’s first-half effort and an own goal from Gaetan Bong gave the Toffees a reasonably comfortable 2-0 win.

It could have been worse for Albion, after Anthony Knockaert received a red card and Everton were awarded a penalty, but Maty Ryan produced a fine save to deny Wayne Rooney from 12 yards.

LAST TIME OUT: ALBION

ALBION 1
Murray 48

WOLVES 0

Albion line-up: Ryan; Bruno, Duffy, Dunk, Bong; Jahanbakhsh, Stephens, Kayal, Izquierdo (Knockaert 81); March (Bissouma 71); Murray.
 
Subs not used: Steele (GK), Balogun, Bernardo, Locadia, Andone.




LAST TIME OUT: EVERTON

MANCHESTER UNITED 2
Pogba 27
Martial 49

EVERTON 1
Sigurdsson 77 (pen)

Everton line-up: Pickford; Coleman, Keane, Zouma, Digne; Gomes, Gueye (Calvert-Lewin 78); Walcott (Tosun 78), Sigurdsson, Bernard (Lookman 62); Richarlison.

Subs not used: Stekelenburg (GK), Baines, Mina, Davies.




PLAYER TO WATCH: Gylfi Sigurdsson

The midfielder has been a mainstay in Everton’s team since signing from Swansea City for a then club-record fee - in excess of £40 million.

Sigurdsson pulls the strings in the centre of midfield for the Toffees, and the Icelandic has found the back of the net six times already, making him the club’s top goalscorer this season.

The 29-year-old has fired five goals in his previous six Premier League matches, including a brace against Fulham in Everton’s 3-0 victory at Goodison Park.

His 2017/18 total of six goals from 33 matches has already been matched after just 11 games this season, which certainly makes him one of the Premier League’s most in-form midfielders.


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