Brighton face a huge challenge if they are to compete in the Premier League this season, but will take inspiration from the likes of Bournemouth and Burnley in the past few seasons. Like Burnley last year, Brighton will rely on their home form to survive the drop, after they lost only three league games at the Amex last year. Brighton’s signings this summer have been shrewd, as they have resisted the urge to join in the reckless spending of most of their Premier League rivals. Davy Propper has come in for a club record £6m, providing a goal threat from midfield after netting 16 goals in 67 games for PSV, whilst Matthew Ryan has joined from Valencia. Ryan will play a key role this season, as he will have to step up to replace David Stockdale, who kept 20 clean sheets in the Seagull’s promotion season. Last season’s top scorer Glenn Murray is one of a few players in Brighton’s squad to have Premier League experience, but he has never been prolific in the top flight. The Seagull’s trip to Crystal Palace in April could be a vital game in determining Brighton’s fate this season, which will add extra spice to the clash.
Key Player: Anthony Knockaert. The Frenchman was instrumental in Brighton’s promotion to the Premier League. Only Glenn Murray netted more goals than Knockaert, who chipped in with 15 goals from the wing. Knockaert will play a key role in providing the goals if Brighton are to survive in the Premier League.
One to Watch: Mathias Normann. The 21-year-old has joined the Seagull’s this summer from Norwegian second division side FK Bodo/Glimt. The midfielder made 42 appearances for his previous club, and has represented Norway at youth level. Seagull’s fans will hope that Normann will learn from the likes of Dale Stephens despite probably not making too much of an impact on the first team this year.
Last Season: 2nd (Championship)
Predicted Finish: 19th