Spurs Look to Clip Seagulls as Tottenham Host Brighton

LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 26: Giovani Lo Celso of Tottenham Hotspur and Steven Alzate of Brighton & Hove Albion (Photo by Visionhaus)
LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 26: Giovani Lo Celso of Tottenham Hotspur and Steven Alzate of Brighton & Hove Albion (Photo by Visionhaus) /
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Brighton misses against Tottenham
Brighton misses against Tottenham Hotspur. (Photo by TOLGA AKMEN/AFP via Getty Images) /

Brighton Hove Albion, Almost There

In some respects, Brighton’s season has been terribly like Spurs, as it has been the lapses in concentration and in some instances bad luck that has bit the Gulls. Brighton is the only team in the league to have conceded more set piece goals than the six Tottenham have given up, with seven set piece goals against. Like Spurs, Brighton has been stiff other than those set pieces conceding 12 on the season, which is only 5 from six games in open play.

Like Tottenham, three of those set piece goals against have been penalty kicks, while Brighton have also had 2 penalty kicks awarded, for five penalties for or against Brighton in just six games this season. Also, like Spurs, Brighton have one shutout in the League the season in the Seagulls 0-3 win at Newcastle.

All this is to say that Brighton is relatively stout defensively but are prone to lapses and can be had. This is particularly true with Lewis Dunk – the club’s all-time leader in Premier League wins – out following a red card against Palace earlier this season.

Offensively, Brighton have managed to score in every game, despite having a difficult time shooting on target.  According to the Premier League, Brighton have taken 80 shots this season, for an average just over 13 per game. However, only 23 of those 80 shots have ended up on target, which is less than4 per game at under 30%.

Even though Brighton has struggled to keep their shots on target at 1.67 goals per game on those 13 shots, the Seagulls are going with a quantity over quality philosophy. Neal Maupay leads the way in both shots and goals, with 19 shots and 4 goals on the season. No other Gull has more than 1 goal, but both Leandro Trossard (15) and Yves Bissouma (11) have more than 10 shots each and a goal.

Ultimately, the quantity comes from a concerted effort to hold some possession and take the game to their opponents. Averaging more than 510 passes per match with ~83% accuracy, Brighton are not careless with the ball. This is an area where the loss of Dunk may hurt Brighton as he is third on the team with 340 passes on the season.

Brighton can be careless in one area – and it is connected to the lack of concentration tied to the set piece goals conceded – which is discipline. Brighton has only committed 45 fouls on the season, which is less than 8 fouls per match, a low number for the League.

Brighton have also picked up 12 cards this season, 10 yellow cards and two red cards. That is essentially 1 card per half for the team, which has led to the squad being short and being without Dunk for the Spurs game. If push comes to shove in this match, maybe Tottenham can ruffle the Seagulls feathers and get them off their game.