Brighton vs Leicester preview - 'Home form is key'

Saturday 31st March

Here we go then. With the international break behind us, it is about to get real for Albion.

30th Mar 2018

Brighton match preview

Leicester’s visit is the first of two games at the Amex on consecutive Saturdays that will have a big say in which division we play in next season. 

Not quite 'make or break', but…

Next Saturday Huddersfield come to town and if we can pick up four or six points from the visits of Leicester and Huddersfield, Albion will surely have completed the mission for this campaign as a second season in the top flight will be all but ensured.

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If we only pick up a point or two, Albion fans will be eyeing our tough run-in even more nervously than before.

Our final six games include Spurs, Manchester United, Manchester City, Liverpool and tricky away fixtures at Burnley and the Croydon Clowns. 

Aside from our short trip up the M23, points are likely to be hard to come by once Huddersfield roll out of Sussex.

Home form the key

We go into this game 12th in the table, a position built on the foundations of solid home form. We have a home record only bettered by the 'Big Six' and Everton.

READ MORE: How England would line up without their top-six players


Only Manchester City, Liverpool and Chelsea have taken three points away from the Amex, and another big performance at home is called for. Leicester are no slouches away from home, but they’ve only won four of 15 played.

The Foxes sit in 8th place on 40 points and have little to play for now. If they aren’t at their best, then this represents a decent chance for us to pick up a vital three points which will get us within touching distance of joining them in next season’s Premier League.

Doubt over Stephens

I will be anxiously refreshing the official club twitter feed at 2pm on my way to the ground with my main focus being on Dale Stephens.

The central midfielder makes us tick, which is why he had played every single minute of every Premier League game until his unfortunate injury ahead of the Everton game two weeks ago.

Without Stephens we put in one of the worst performances of the season and it will be a big blow if he is still absent for this crunch fixture. 

Anthony Knockaert continues to serve a suspension for his ridiculous tackle at Everton meaning Jurgen Locadia - Albion’s record signing - gets the chance for a first Premier League start.

Other than that, expect Chris Hughton to stick with the side that has served him so well during the last six weeks or so.

Predicted line-up

Ryan, Schelotto, Duffy, Dunk, Bong, Locadia, Propper, Kayal, Izquierdo, Gross, Murray.

Key battle

Jamie Vardy is in fine form, having struck seven goals in his last nine games for the Foxes, to which he added a superb goal at Wembley for England in midweek.

Lewis Dunk will be the man tasked with keeping tabs on the pacy frontman, and how this one pans out could determine who picks up the points.

Opposition danger man

With his not-allowed-to-leave sulk behind him, Riyad Mahrez is back at it again, which isn’t good news for anyone Leicester face.

Betting tips and predictions

First goalscorer flutter

Once again, it’s difficult to look any further than the Albion’s leading marksman Glenn Murray to open the scoring and set the Albion on their way.

Get Murray to score first @ 5/1

Bet with your head

A tight 1-1, which I’d probably take right now, allowing us to try and take all the points against Huddersfield next weekend as we inch our way towards safety.

Get a 1-1 draw @ 11/2

Go with your gut

Albion to win a pulsating game of counter-attacking football with a late goal to make it 3-2 which all but takes the roof off the Amex!

Get Brighton to win 3-2 @ 45/1

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