BHAFC v HTFC (23/1/16) | Review

It was back to winning ways at home on Saturday for Brighton, after a hard-fought win against Huddersfield, which moved them up to 3rd, just 6 points off table toppers Hull. Goals from Bobby Zamora and James Wilson ended Huddersfield 5 game unbeaten run, with Harry Bunn the scorer for the Terriers.

Brighton had the first chance of the game; Jamie Murphy drove at Tom Smith before putting in a quick, low cross across the 6 yard box, but unfortunatly nobody was on the end of it. Next was arguably the counter attack of the season, with Zamora starting and finishing the goal; a corner was cleared by Zamora and a quick break ensued, Beram Kayal picked up the loose ball and drove into the Terriers half, he then played Anthony Knockaert in down the right wing, Knockaert squared up to Smith before cutting back and whipping in a delightful cross, in where Zamora had darted the full length of the pitch, to volley home the pinpoint cross giving the  Albion a deserved lead. Huddersfield had their first chance late in the half; a free kick from the right wasn’t defended well by Brighton, and after a bit of pinball and head tennis, the ball fell to Nahki Wells, who blasted his chance over and into the North Stand. Huddersfield did score on their next attack though; a cross from Smith on the right wing was missed by Emyr Huws, but the unmarked Bunn got his head to it, and guided it into the bottom corner. In to the second half, and Brighton had a great chance to regain the lead; Knockaert’s free kick from 25 yards out had Jed Steer beaten in the Terrier’s goal, but not the post as it knicked the outside of it. Knockaert was at the centre of another Albion chance, and this one was taken. After driving at Joel Lynch, he put in a cross which was behind Wilson, but the on loan striker managed to get his head to it, and guide it past Steer into the corner. No more chances happened in the final few minutes, but Huddersfield did lose a man, after Smith was sent off for a second bookable offence after bringing down Kazenga LuaLua. All in all, it was a good afternoon for the Albion; back to winning ways at home, and with the other promotion chasing teams all dropping points, it made the win even better.

Line-Up;

Stockdale (7); Not much to do, relatively quiet in the 2nd half.

Bruno (7); Supported Knockaert well, and was always looking to get forward. Defended well, but didn’t have too many problems.

Dunk (7); Contained Wells well and was comfortable on the ball, didn’t rush anything and look solid.

Goldson (7); Liked to get forward at every chance he had, and picked out good passes which helped start attacks.

Ridgewell (6); After some good games beforehand, he was quiet on his home debut, but never really troubled except defending the cross which lead to their equaliser.

Knockaert (8); Another electrifying game from the new boy; got both assists and dazzled with his tremendous skill and agility, might just be bargain of the window.

Kayal (7); Struggled early on, but got into his passing rhythm as the game went on, especially in the 2nd half as opposition legs started to ware.

Stephens (6); Taken off at half-time presumably due to the knock he picked up during the first half. A little quiet and wasn’t convincing with his passing.

Murphy (7); Gave Smith a headache in the first half with his attacks, before rotating positions in the second half.

Hemed (6); The only chance he had was the cross from Murphy, which he should of been on, but didn’t bust a neck to get there.

Zamora (8); Started and finished his goal, and is already a goal of the year contender. That is now 5 goals in 7 starts this season for Bobby./

Subs;

Crofts (7); On for Stephens at half-time; helped Kayal sweep up any loose ball in midfield, but was more defensively minded.

Wilson (8); Scored the winner, and what a goal it was; stretching behind his body to guide the ball past the keeper. Looked a threat throughout, especially when linking up with Knockaert

LuaLua (7); Returned to The AMEX for the first time in 3 1/2 months, and was electric when given the ball; wasn’t afraid to run at defenders, which got Smith sent off.

Brighton [2] – [1] Huddersfield; Zamora (30), Wilson (66); Bunn (45+2)

Att; 25,367

MOTM; Knockaert

Advertisements

BHAFC v HTFC (23/1/16) | Preview

It’s back home to The AMEX this Saturday after, what has seemed to be, the longest 22 days we have ever known. During that time, Brighton did managed to break their winless streak, last week at Blackburn and although it wasn’t the greatest watch, it has hopefully re-ignited the momentum bar. The Seagulls welcome Huddersfield to the south coast, with the Terriers in terrific form.

Huddersfield News;

Sean Scannell and Harry Bunn look set to miss out with injuries, while Johnathan Hogg is serving a 1 game ban, after being sent off in mid-week during their F.A Cup replay with Reading. New signing Karim Matmour could make his debut, while ‘keeper Jed Steer will be back between the sticks after missing out mid-week due to ineligibility. After such a poor start for the Terriers, they have picked up 11 points in their last 5 games which has included a 5-0 win at home to Charlton. Nahki Wells is the top scorer with 9 goals, with Emyr Huws second with 5; both are set to start on Saturday.

Brighton News;

Gordon Greer and Sam Baldock are both in contention to be in the match day 18, after recovering from injury and taking full part in training on Friday. Defenders Uwe Hunemeier, Gaetan Bong and Liam Rosenior are all still out, however Bong has begun training and is on course to become avaliable once again around the start of Febuary. Bobby Zamora’s winner last weekend has sent him joint top with Tomer Hemed, as leading Albion scorer (6) and will be looking to continue to add more goals, after breaking Peter Ward’s goalscoring record.

Earlier This Season: HTFC [1] – [1] BHAFC  (18/8/15);

Beram Kayal scored within 17 seconds to put Brighton 1-0 up, but a Jacob Butterfield goal in the second half, shared the spoils.

H-2-H;

In the 19 games played between the 2, they both share 5 wins each, with the other 9 being draws; 5 of which has been in the last 5 games (2 0-0’s and 3 1-1’s). Brighton are unbeaten in the last 7 meetings, beginning back in the 2012/13 season of the championship. However, Brighton have only managed to score twice in their last 6 home games against Huddersfield, with the last 2 being 0-0.

Likely Line-Up;

Stockdale;

Bruno, Greer, Dunk, Ridgewell;

Knockaert, Kayal, Stephens, Murphy;

Wilson, Hemed;

Prediction;

Brighton 1-1 Huddersfield

BRFC v BHAFC (16/1/16) | Review

It was back to winning ways finally for the Seagulls, after a hard-fought victory against Blackburn. The victory ended a run of 7 games without a victory, stretching back to the 5th of December, and 5 games without a goal, whilst also maintaining their record of not losing to Blackburn since they returned to England’s 2nd tier, as well as scoring in every one of those games. The win, however, didn’t come without its fair share of scares, with supposed Albion target Jordan Rhodes, their main threat and had some great chances to take something from the game. 

The game started quite casual, Blackburn were happy to sit with the ball and weren’t that eager to press into the Albion half, but that all changed after just 3 minutes; a long ball forward by David Stockdale was flicked on by Blackburn midfielder Darragh Lenihan, which bounced up to be contested by Tomer Hemed and both Blackburn centre backs Matt Kilgallon and Grant Hanley, and after a header away from Hanley fell into the path of Jamie Murphy, the Albion winger struck a fierce volley into the ground which had Jason Steele scrambling across; he managed to get fingertips to the ball, but it hit the inside of the post and came back across the goal, where Bobby Zamora was waiting for the easiest tap in he will ever get, to put the Seagulls 1-0 up. Blackburn had some good chances to draw level; Rhodes had the first with a header which had Stockdale scrambling across the goal, but it drifted wide of the far post. Hope Akpan was next to test Stockdale, he’s long range effort was an inch or 2 from the crossbar as it dipped down over it, which looked to have Stockdale worried for a moment. Rhodes hit the side netting next, after a superb back-heel layoff from Craig Conway set him free, after some good work pressurizing the Albion defense. Zamora had a good chance to double the lead; a long ball forward from Dale Stephens bounced awkwardly for Hanley which allowed Zamora to wrestle himself in front of the defender and attempt to score, but his cheeky effort at trying to chip Steele didn’t work out as planned as he over hit it, and went out for a goal kick. Summer target Ben Marshall hit the inside of the post from a 25 yard free-kick, before being cleared by Lewis Dunk. Anthony Knockaert then hit the post for Brighton, after he took the ball down well inside the box, and hit the ball on the turn, but could only watch it hit the outside of the post and go out. Conway had a rocket saved by Stockdale up the other end, when the ball kindly found him after some pinball in their box. Rhodes had the best chance though of the half; after a well timed tackle from Dunk, the ball got away from him, with Rhodes lurking to have a pop at goal, but Bruno was on hand to just block the ball which took it wide of the goal, stopping a certain goal. The final whistle brought relief to the Albion players, coaching staff and fans who had waited a long time to celebrate another victory.

Line-Up;

Stockdale (7); Not much to do for the relatively busy keeper, but good enough for the clean sheet.

Bruno (7); Made the important block from Rhodes, but did his other defensive duties well, which included containing the ever tricky Conway.

Dunk (7); Had has some horrible games recently, but played quite well in this one. Look strong and lively on the ball and was determined not to let Rhodes carve an opening at goal.

Goldson (6); Had a simple afternoon really, Dunk had Rhodes covered, while he was lumbered with Chris Brown, who didn’t; make an impact at all.

Ridgewell (6); Even if we enjoy his company for a month, it will be well worth it; very solid again and made Marshall’s afternoon difficult while making his own quite simple.

Knockaert (7); After a great debut, he carried it on with another good performance; unlucky not to be on the scoresheet after hitting the post, but I’m sure he will get one sooner rather than later.

Kayal (7); The midfield warrior was on top again in the centre of the pitch; his passing as good as ever in tricky conditions and was always ready to sniff out danger when it came along.

Stephens (7); A good game from him; attacked well when needed to, but was more involved in defensive duties.

Murphy (7); A wonderful shot from the Scotsman, and unlucky not to score it himself, but he won’t mind the semi-assist.

Hemed (6); Not as involved as recent games, but was able to hold the ball up well and get Zamora involved.

Zamora (8); Scored Albion’s first goal for over 9 and a half hours and over takes Peter Ward’s goal scoring tally for Brighton. Like Hemed, he held the ball up well, and invited him into the attacks; should of had a second though when through against Steele.

Subs;

Wilson (6); On for Zamora, and was as lively as ever although he couldn’t fashion a chance.

Calderon (N/A); Late replacement for Knockaert.

Crofts (N/A); Late replacement for Murphy.

Blackburn [0] – [1] Brighton; Zamora (3)

Att; 12,930 (606 Brighton)

MOTM; Zamora

BRFC v BHAFC (16/1/16) | Preview

Game 27 could throw us a surprise, with 2 of the most out of form teams in the last 6 games battling in Lancashire. Hosts Blackburn have won 1 of their last 6 games while Brighton have lost 5 of their last 6, not scoring in any of those games. However, there are a few positives which could well get Brighton back on the winning track once again. The Seagulls haven’t lost against the Rovers since their return to England’s 2nd tier, and have scored in each of the games played in that time. So as always keep the faith because the stats are very encouraging, that Brighton could go and grab a win.

Blackburn News;

Blackburn only have 1 fit senior centre back available, with only Grant Hanley fit. More positive news though is that Tom Lawrence and Corry Evans have shaken off knocks picked up in midweek. Simeon Jackson today signed for the rest of the season, but will unluckily be avaliable after being signed past the signing on deadline for Saturday’s games. Jordan Rhodes is Blackburn’s top scorer with 9, and will be looking to add to that tally after not netting since the end of November (21/11 – 8 games)

Brighton News;

Sam Baldock and Kazenga LuaLua will both be pushing for starts after making substitute appearances within the last week. Gordon Greer looks to have shaken off his injury he sustained on Tuesday, and looks set to re-partner Lewis Dunk at the back. Anthony Knockaert will be looking to continue where he left off on Tuesday, after playing a superb game on his debut. 

Earlier This Season: BHAFC [1] – [0] BRFC (22/8/15);

Kazenga LuaLua netted his 3rd of the season in the 1-0 victory back in August, which sent Brighton top of the league.

H-2-H;

As mentioned above, Brighton haven’t lost against Blackburn since their return to the Championship (7 games – 3W 4D) and have scored in all of those games. The last visit to Ewood Park was last March where Brighton inflicted an 1-0 defeat on Blackburn, thanks to a Matt Kilgallon own goal. With both teams playing badly, this game is expected to be tense and very slow, so I would definatly bring your pillow! Having said that, this could be the cue for both teams to re-kindle their attacking nature.

Likely Line-Up;

Stockdale;

Bruno, Greer, Dunk, Ridgewell;

Knockaert, Kayal, Stephens, Murphy;

Wilson, Hemed;

Prediction;

Blackburn 1-1 Brighton

RUFC v BHAFC (12/1/16) | Review

It is times like this as a fan that you want to curl up into a corner and rock yourself back and forth, or bang your head against a wall, and I’m sure that most Brighton fans would of done one or the other on the last few games, as they slipped up once again away at Rotherham. While Rotherham were well deserved winners, it should of been made much harder for a side really struggling this season, who at the start of play were only just above the relegation places, and with the mentality of being automatic promotion contenders, this was a game Brighton would of ear-marked for 3 points. But with Brighton’s confidence at rock-bottom, it’s the oppositions chance to collect 3 points. Brighton’s winless run is now extended to 8 games, while their scoreless run is now at 6! So when are the horrible streaks going to end? If I knew I would give you an exact answer right now, but unfortunatly I don’t hold that power. For me, Hughton still needs to do some January shopping; the squad just hasn’t got the depth as the likes of Derby or Middlesbrough, even with the likes of Gaetan Bong and Solly March out injured. A new centre back is definatly required and so too might a creative central midfielder, as Beram Kayal and Dale Stephens are being played pretty much every game without a rest. Anyway on to the game.

Brighton started slow and sluggish, but did have the first chance; new signing Anthony Knockaert crossed the ball towards James Wilson, but Kirk Broadfoot headed clear only to Knockaert, his shot then flashed across the goal when he might of been better to square the ball. Rotherham had the next chance; a cross from Grant Ward was met by Danny Ward, but his looping header was wide of David Stockdale’s goal, and was able to see it out. The 2 Ward’s linked up again; a deep cross from Grant towards Danny was headed towards goal, but Stockdale was easily able to gather it. A genius piece of play from D.Ward allowed G.Ward a chance; after a bit of pinball on the edge of the Albion box, a reverse back heel from Danny into the path of Grant allowed him a chance at goal, but instead tried to be unselfish and cross the ball, but no teammates had made the run thinking that he would take it on himself. Rotherham did score on their next chance though; Joe Mattock’s cross wasn’t delt with by Lewis Dunk, who slipped over while trying to clear the ball, with Dunk kicking it into the path of D.Ward, who volleyed the ball past Stockdale’s near post and into the net to give the Millers a deserved lead. Brighton should of been level moments into the second half; Wilson played a lovely ball through the Rotherham defence for Stephens, but with him 1-on-1 he fluffed his shot and went well wide of the goal, much to the relief of the Rotherham defence who were convinced he was offside (he wasn’t though). With a few half-chances here and there, the game was there for the taking for Rotherham and they did just that, but the did have some help again from the Albion defence; a cross from G.Ward was met by Bruno, but the defenders header was headed straight into the path of Matt Derbyshire, who half-volleyed the ball into the top left-hand corner. Brighton had 2 late chances, the first from Bobby Zamora; after a corner, the ball pinged around the box and after Zamora had finally got the ball under control, he tried to cross the ball towards the back post, but came off as a shot, which had Lee Camp back-peddling to tip the ball over. The second came from a Knockaert free-kick; a beautiful cross from the Frenchman was met by Kayal, but his header cannoned back of the post with Camp stranded, before finally ricocheting off Tomer Hemed for a goal-kick. The final whistle was met with cheers in the home ends, but huge disappointment from the brave 375 travelling Brighton fan’s, who were expecting to see their team come away with something.

As I wasn’t their last night, I can only review on what I have been told by friends who did go.

Line-Up;

Stockdale (6); Did the basics well, but didn’t have that much to do. Couldn’t do anything with their goals, but will be disappointed to be beaten at his near post.

Bruno (6); didn’t have much to do for a lot of the game, but his header to Crofts/Dunk was atrocious and gifted them their second goal.

Greer (6); Back from injury, but might be going straight back on the treatment table after coming off. Did well in defending in the air, but when the ball was on the ground found it hard to contain D.Ward.

Dunk (6); He may of slipped, but he still gave the goal away; maybe a few games rest just to bet his head right might do him some good. Other than that he did quite well, and didn’t have too many problems

Ridgewell (6); Had the hardest job of the night trying to keep G.Ward quiet, which he found hard to do; pretty much everything came through him.

Knockaert (8); A great debut from the Frenchman, created a couple of decent chances, including the injury time free-kick; definatly a lot more to come.

Kayal (6);  Looked sluggish in the first half, but picked it up in the second half with some nice passing and chance creation

Stephens (6); Like Kayal, he was slow on the ball and passes went astray. Improved in the second half, but should of levelled the tie when 1-0 down.

Murphy (6); Very quiet in the first half, barely involved in the game. Improved the second half, but taken off for LuaLua.

Wilson (5); Not his fault, but had no chances what so ever; bit hard for a striker to score with no chances being created.

Hemed (5); Had the same problem as Wilson, no chance creation means no goals; he needs the service for him to score the goals, just like at the start of the season.

Subs;

Zamora (5); Barely involved in the game, only his cross/shot was his real contribution to the game.

LuaLua (5); On for Murphy, and looked livelier than him, but still didn’t get involved in the game too much.

Crofts (N/A); Came on for Greer, may of been at fault for not getting to Bruno’s header.

Rotherham [2] – [0] Brighton; D.Ward (45), Derbyshire (86);

Att; 9,295 (375 Brighton)

MOTM; Knockaert

HCAFC v BHAFC (9/1/16) | F.A Cup 3rd Round Review

Brighton’s dream of lifting the F.A Cup goes on after they were beaten away to Hull, in what was a rather drear and quite frankly boring game. It was quite clear that both teams would rather focus on the league; this was apparent with both teams making 7 changes from their previous starting XI, but unfortunately 1 had to go through. A first half Robert Snodgrass penalty sent the Tigers to the 4th round, while Brighton went back to there drawing board, with their winless run now extended to 7 games; their goalless run is now 5 games too! As much as I have got behind the team during this barren streak, and will continue to do so, it has now gotten quite worrying about our ability in front of goal. Now everyone will say ‘Get behind the team, they will turn it around eventually’, and although I would love that to be the case, I don’t think that is the answer. The facts are that Brighton just aren’t creating enough chances or having enough shots; the first 10 games of the season we were 2nd with most shots (115), only behind Middlesbrough. In the 7 winless games we have only had 48 shots, one of the lowest amounts in the championship for the past 7 games. So what is the answer? To be honest, I’m just guessing as much as you guys, but it does seem like more shots need to be taken, simple logic really; shots=goals, no shots mean no goals. On to the game from Saturday now.

Brighton arrived at Hull with the opportunity to bury their winless run of 6 games, as well as extending their run of making it to the 4th round in each of the previous 6 seasons. Chris Hughton rung the changes, as half expected, with new signings Liam Ridgewell and Richie Towell both making thief first starts. Hull started the game well, and had a good chance early on when Snodgrass’s curling free kick went just wide of Niki Maenpaa’s goal. Another great chance went begging for Hull; from another Snodgrass free kick, Maenpaa punched clear only to Curtis Davies, but his half-volley went over the bar when anything on target would of been a certain goal. Hull did take the lead though, after a corner was half delt with by Maenpaa, the ball bobbled around the penalty box; Lewis Dunk tried to diving head the ball away from danger, only for him to bring down Snodgrass and the referee to award the penalty. Some say it wasn’t a penalty, but it was a stupid mistake and in my eyes was correctly awarded. Snodgrass dispatched the penalty well, slamming it down the middle leaving Maenpaa stranded as he dived to the left. After a first half of which made you want to scratch your eyes out, the second half started in pretty much the same way, slow and not much to cheer about on a cold afternoon; the only excitement was taking the micky out of a Hull fan wearing a Matalan tracksuit. Some half chances here and there for Hull went begging, before the introduction of Sam Baldock, Kazenga LuaLua and Tomer Hemed changed the game. The Seagulls had a bit more urgency, especially with LuaLua attacking down his favoured left side. Baldock had a long ranged shot just drift wide of the post, that being Brighton’s first shot of the game after 80ish minutes. As the game drew to a close, Brighton had 1 final chance; LuaLua fizzed a low cross into the box, and Baldock’s side footed shot cannoned off the crossbar and went out for a throw; that was the third time in as many games the Seagulls have been denied by the crossbar. As the final whistle blew, it was meet with overall disappointment from both sets of fans who were expecting a much better game, but it’s 1 set of fans who will be glued to the TV to see who they get in the next round.

Line-Up;

Maenpaa (6); A quiet game for the reserve keeper; nothing he could of done with the penalty, only concern would of been dealing with crosses as he seemed to want to punch the ball rather than collect it.

Goldson (6); Not much wrong with his performance, done well in a back 3 and was given a stern test by Adama Diomande and then Greg Luer.

Dunk (5); Starting to lose patience with him, becoming increasingly unreliable as the games go on; had no though in what he was doing and was correctly penalised for it. To make matters worse, Sone Aluko had the better of him for most of the afternoon too.

Ridgewell (7); Super debut from the MLS winning captain; confident on the ball, swept up well and was dangerous on the attack, shame we only have him for a month.

Calderon (6); Had a bit more freedom playing a wing-back role, but struggled to link up with the central midfielders. Defiantly missing an out-and-out right winger.

Holla (6); Provided a stern test for Tom Huddlestone in the centre of midfield, and got the better of him as many time as he got the better of him; not sure if he is the kind of player Hughton wants.

Ince (6); Good stuff from the defensive midfielder, who protected the back 3 well and stared the few attacks we did actually have.

Crofts (6); Suprised to say this, but he had a good game; great passing with fellow midfielders and wasn’t afraid to take on defenders.

Chicksen (6); Like Holla, it seems he will be surplus to requirements come the end of the season, but he had a good game too, not much on the attacking side of things, but defensively he was sound.

Towell (6); Not a bad start from the Irishman; supported Manu well and got himself into attacking positions, could be a very useful signing.

Manu (5/6); While it’s not his fault for the service, he had absolutely nothing to play with all afternoon, both bad chance creation and good defending were factors.

Subs;

Baldock (6); Looked lively on his return to the side, gave the Hull defenders the run around and had some good chances too.

LuaLua (6); Like Baldock, he looked lively and was always ready to take on defenders; will be a key player if he can stay fit for the rest of the season.

Hemed (6); Gave Davies problems when he came on, and held the ball up well which allowed players to get forward looking for the equaliser.

Hull [1] – [0] Brighton; Snodgrass (41 Pen).

Att; 10,706 (390 Brighton)

MOTM; Ridgewell

RUFC v BHAFC (12/1/16) | Preview

It’s back to league duty for the Seagulls who will be looking to end their dreadful 7 game winless streak, and 5 game goalless steak. After Saturday’s defeat at the hands of Hull, it’s now time to buckle down and focus on the league, and that starts with a tough away game against Rotherham.

Rotherham News;

Rotherham will be with out a number of players; Danny Ward (hip), Lee Frecklington, Farrend Rawson (both hamstring), Stephen Kelly (knee) and Leon Best (groin) will all be absent from the game on Tuesday. Jonson Clarke-Harris is their top scorer with 6, and will be looking to increase that tally.

Brighton News;

Brighton will have new signing Anthony Knockaert available after he had his international clearance accepted today. Sam Baldock and Kazenga LuaLua with both be set to play apart in the game as the return to match fitness, while Gordon Greer will have another fitness ahead of the game. Beram Kayal, Dale Stephens, Bruno, David Stockdale, James Wilson and Jamie Murphy all look set to return to the 18 after being rested for the Hull defeat.

Earlier This Season: BHAFC [2] – [1] RUFC (15/9/15);

Brighton won the tie earlier in the season 2-1, which extended their lead at the top to 5 points (how we wish it was still the case). Goals from Tomer Hemed and Stephens earned the 3 points for the Albion, with Clarke-Harris scoring the consolation goal.

H-2-H;

Brighton and Rotherham have met 9 times so far, with Brighton taking the bragging rights with 5 wins comapared to Rotherham’s 2. All wins bar 1 have been by a 1 goal advantage, with 1-0 appearing 5 times out of the 7 wins; the other 2 being 2-0 and the recent 2-1 victory to the Seagulls.

Likely Line-Up;

Stockdale;

Bruno, Goldson, Dunk, Ridgewell;

Knockaert, Kayal, Stephens, Murphy;

Hemed, Wilson;

Prediction;

Rotherham 0-1 Brighton 

HCAFC v BHAFC (9/1/16) | F.A Cup 3rd Round Preview

Brighton take a much needed break from league duty this weekend, with a trip to promotion rivals Hull in the F.A Cup 3rd Round. For some they have declared this game a hindrance, and I will agree that I was one of them, but in recent weeks this game has become more important than most realise. It gives players such as Bruno, Beram Kayal and Dale Stephens a much needed rest, while also testing out fringe players like Jake Forster-Caskey and Danny Holla. With the incredibly bad form of the Albion too, this game could be the break they need to recapture their form; there’s no pressure to win, great if they do, but nobody will be too upset if they did go out, and decided to focus solely on the league and gaining promotion. Hull are in the same boat too; their form hasn’t been as kind to them as it was at the start of the season, and they have been reluctant to rotate key players too, so this will be an opportunity for Steve Bruce to mix things up.

Hull News;

Michael Dawson (knee) and Alex Bruce (back) are both sidelined for the Tigers, other than that Steve Bruce has a full squad to choose from. Brighton-born striker Greg Luer will be poised to start upfront, with Abel Hernandez and Chuba Akpom expected to be rested. Summer signing and Brighton-linked player Brian Lenihan could also be set to feature in the game.

Brighton News;

New signing Anthony Knockaert won’t be available for the game, as he awaits his international clearance; he will be ready for Tuesday’s game at Rotherham. Other January signings Richie Towell and Liam Ridgewell will both be pushing for starts, as Hughton rings the changes. Sam Baldock and Kazenga LuaLua have been confirmed that they will play apart in the game; both have been sidelined for 2 and 3 months respectively. Meanwhile, Gordon Greer will have a fitness test before the game, but Uwe Hunemeier is out until the end of the month.

H-2-H;

There has been 2 previous meetings between the 2 in the F.A Cup; both coming 2 years ago. The game at The AMEX ended in a 1-1 draw, while the replay at the KC ended with Hull winning 2-1; they went on to be beaten finalists.

Likely Line-Up; (Almost impossible to call it)

Maenpaa;

Calderon, Goldson, Ridgewell, Chicksen;

Towell, Ince, Holla;

Manu, Baldock, LuaLua;

Prediction;

Hull 1-1 Brighton

BHAFC v WWFC (1/1/16) | Review

Another game, another frustrating day for the Albion, as they slumped to their 3rd straight home defeat against a resilient Wolves side. After this result, Brighton are now bottom of the Championship form table, in what has been a dreadful run of games for the Seagulls, which has included 4 straight scoreless games. Luckily most of the results over the weekend’s action went in favour of the Albion, otherwise they could be further off the pace.

Wolves had the first chance, when some sloppy play from Brighton allowed Wolves to break on the counter; James Henry skipped past Inigo Calderon before playing in Benik Afobe, he took it round Lewis Dunk, but his shot was straight a David Stockdale. Brighton had the next chance, after a cross from Calderon was cleared only to James Wilson, the striker unleashed a wonderful half-volley, but Carl Ikeme tipped the ball over the bar. Wolves did thane the lead on their next chance, or half-chance should I say; After losing the ball on the halfway line Brighton couldn’t then deal with the flurry of Wolves players breaking towards their goal, the ball ended out on the left wing with Jordan Graham, his low cross was turned in by Connor Goldson past Stockdale for, what is sure a mis-communication, own goal. It was a kick in the teeth for Brighton, who looked like the better side. As they trudged in for half-time, there was plenty to think about for Chris Hughton. It seemed his half time talk paid off, when Brighton created a great chance. When a bad clearance for Danny Batth landed at Wilson’s feet, the on-loan striker took on Matt Doherty and hit a low shot towards the corner; but Ikeme got down well to save it. Lewis Dunk had the chance to equalize next; a long ball from Calderon in to box was left by Dunk for Goldson at the back post, he played the ball back to Dunk who, unfortunately, ballooned his shot over the bar. Jamie Murphy got in on the act too; he broke into midfield, and after some intricate passing between him, Bobby Zamora and Wilson, allowed Murphy into the box to have a pop but the shot was put over the bar. Conor Coady finally fashioned a chance for Wolves, their first in about 60 minutes, when he’s well-timed tackle dispossessed Beram Kayal and rolled to Batth, the latter played in Coady and his long range strike was tipped do over by Stockdale for a corner. Bruno was next on the chance creation list, after Murphy had played him in down the right wing, the defender backed off of him and allowed him to have a shot, which he obliged, with a thunderous effort striking the crossbar. Brighton had one last chance to save themselves; a long ball from Goldson into the box was met by Dunk, who was playing centre forward at this time, and his powerful header was tipped over by Ikeme, much to the despair of the fans and Dunk who kicked the post in frustration. The full time whistle rung around The AMEX, which signalled a third straight home loss, scoreless in four and winless in six for Hughton’s Seagulls.

Line-Up;

Stockdale (7); Was quiet for most of the game, but was on hand to stop the 2 real chances Wolves created.

Bruno (8); Had his work cut out; had a hard job marking Graham, as well as filling the gap of there being no right midfielder, resulting in him doing double the workload. He did very well, and should of been rewarded with a goal.

Dunk (7); Has had some stick in the last few games, but seemed to take it well; marked Afobe well, just like he did back in September, and mad his afternoon harder. Could of had 2 goals as well.

Goldson (7); It comes with the territory, but he will learn from his mistake. Other than the own goal, he was neat on the ball and produced 2 great goal-scoring chances.

Calderon (6); Had a few attacks here and there, but was quiet for a lot of the game, which felt like that there was only 10 men on the pitch.

Crofts (6); Had a much better game than on Tuesday, but still not good enough to stake a claim in the starting XI, for me anyway. Passing was better and looked to try and play forwards rather than backwards.

Stephens (6); Like Calderon, he was quiet for a lot of the game. Stephens is one of the creative sparks in the team, and if he isn’t playing well, it seems like it’s harder for us to make the chances.

Kayal (7); I may contradict myself here, but Kayal seems to play better in a 4-3-3 rather than the 4-4-2, as it allows him to get forward and support the strikers. Although he wasn’t at the centre of the chances created, he had a hand in some of them, and was ready to try and create another one.

Murphy (7); Quiet first half, but came to life in the second. Wasn’t afraid to take on Dominic Iorfa, and got the better of him at times, just needs to work on his shooting.

Zamora (6); Haven’t seen him so quiet before; he is usually at the centre of a chance or something, but other than Murphy’s chance, I can’t recall him being involved in one. His hold up play was good, however.

Wilson (8); Hasn’t been feeling well since Christmas, but still wants to play, that’s the attitude that will get a reward sooner rather than later. Had some good chances and made life hard for Batth and Ethan Ebanks-Lendell.

Subs;

Manu (6); Finally had a chance to get out there and show what he can do, and although he did do that to some extent, there is still unwritten pages about him. Needs more game time, before we can firmly judge if he is a flop or not.

Hemed (5); Came on to salvage a point, but didn’t really have a chance to do that.

Brighton [0] – [1] Wolves; Goldson (32 OG).

Att; 26,321

MOTM; Wilson/Bruno (Couldn’t decide)