|Mohammed Salah and Sadio Mane will make life difficult for the Seagulls on Saturday, it's all or nothing for the Kops at the Amex. (Photo credit: Premierleague.com)|
Brighton vs Liverpool
To a certain extent, it’s all in Liverpool’s hands to fight for the title, they win here and the pressure is back on the champions who don’t play until Sunday, they can’t pass on this can they?
Brighton have regressed to a certain low that says the opposite of what we saw of them last season. A lot has changed about their positivity, possession and xG to a point they could now be fully drawn into the relegation dogfight.
Newcastle are already pushing for a top ten finish, they’re only two points behind the Seagulls now and that counts for something, considering the daylight between them six weeks ago. Brighton have solid cushion over the relegation candidates but how things change quickly will advise them.
Liverpool are the form team of the premier league no doubt but their champions league showing at home against Inter Milan left many wondering what would have been had the visitors not been reduced to ten men with the sending off of Alexis Sanchez.
Liverpool have not beaten Brighton in any of the last three games, that should encourage the Seagulls after forcing the Kops to a 2-2 draw in the reverse fixture at Anfield and they were part of the teams that benefited from the Anfield dip last season with a rare 1-0 win.
What is there to fight for? Liverpool must win and that’s it. They can close the gap between them and the top team to three points at least until City plays on Monday, and then leave things till they play Arsenal in a rescheduled game in midweek.
When all outstanding games have been played and it’s only three points between Liverpool and City, the game between the two in April will look like a title decider and goals are pretty much on the Kops’ side, at least for now.
Brighton don’t want to be thrown into the relegation mix but things are not going well at their own end as well. A loss here and a win for Eddie Howe’s side means they will go behind the Toons on the table, and it goes south from there.
Mohammed Salah would be encouraged by the new rules governing the Balon d’Or awards as individual performances would now be considered as against team achievements, Brighton will have a torrid time containing him on Saturday.