After surviving relegation back to the Championship in their first two seasons at Premier League level, Brighton & Hove Albion controversially decided to sack Chris Hughton at the end of the last campaign. It isn’t too surprising given that the Seagulls were embroiled in a relegation battle up until the penultimate game of the season, in the end only finishing one place and two points clear of the bottom three.
The man that has been chosen to replace Hughton is Graham Potter, the Englishman who took Swedish outfit Ostersunds into the knock-out stages of the Europa League and spent last year in the Championship with Swansea City. The board at the Amex Stadium remain ambitious and Potter will have to quickly get to grips with life in the Premier League if he’s to help them progress following a tetchy campaign last time around.
Brighton & Hove Albion Betting Specials
To win the league – 2000/1
To win the FA Cup – 55/1
To win the EFL Cup – 60/1
To finish in the top ten – 10/1
To stay up – 1/3
To be relegated – 21/10
Glenn Murray to be top scorer – 100/1
Graham Potter to be the first manager to leave – 15/2
After managing to beat the drop in their first season in the Premier League with a degree of ease, last term was a little more difficult for the Seagulls. Some dreadful form in the second half of the campaign and particularly in the final few weeks of the season, where they failed to win any of their last nine fixtures, saw the Sussex side beat the drop by just one place and two points, leading to the sacking of manager Chris Hughton.
The former Irish international made no fewer than 10 additions to his first team squad throughout the course of the season and it’s fair to say that the likes of Florin Andone and Alireza Jahanbakhsh didn’t add the attacking verve that the side were hoping to utilise last term.
One of the new managers to the Premier League this summer is Graham Potter, Brighton’s new boss. A left-back during his playing days, Potter enjoyed spells with clubs like Stoke City, West Bromwich Albion and Birmingham City as a player but has taken a roundabout route to the Premier League as a manager, working in universities in Hull and Leeds and as the technical director for the Ghana women’s national team before taking the job at Swedish club Ostersunds in 2010.
In eight years at the club, Potter managed to guide the team to no fewer than three promotions from the fourth tier all the way to the Allsvenskan and even reaching the knock-out stages of the Europa League in the season before last. That earned him a move to Swansea City where he produced some fine results despite difficult working circumstances and financial constraints last year, meaning a move to Premier League Brighton in May proved to be an easy decision to make for the 44 year old.
The New Arrivals
At the time of writing, Potter has moved to bring in two confirmed new signings. Young defender Matthew Clarke has arrived from Portsmouth, while a club record transfer fee has been paid to sign winger Leandro Trossard from Belgian club Genk. After a disappointing campaign for some of the Seagulls attack-minded players, Potter will be hoping that Trossard can inject some creativity into the starting eleven and provide for the likes of Glenn Murray and Jurgen Locadia in attack.
Shane Duffy made 40 appearances for the Seagulls last term (PA Images)
As a new manager, there’s no doubting that Potter will be keen to put his own stamp on the squad and as such there is likely to be a few more new arrivals before the campaign gets underway. With Anthony Knockaert and Lewis Dunk possibly on their way out of the club, there will be funds to reinvest in the playing squad.
The Key Man
That Glenn Murray remains one of the most potent attackers in the lower reaches of the Premier League is testament to the way he has looked after his body during a long and prolific playing career. After working his way up through the lower leagues, the striker didn’t make his Premier League debut until the age of 30 and in the following five years he has continued to be a thorn in the side of defenders up and down the country.
Murray will turn 36 in September, and so it can reasonably be expected that his ability will start to wane this term, but he has never relied heavily on pace and always more so on his predatory instincts and intelligent movement. Without the 13 Premier League goals he managed last season, it’s fair to assume that Brighton would not have remained in the top tier and they’ll need double figures from him again to achieve the same fate this time around.
What style of play will Potter implement at the Amex?
Potter was known for a fast-paced, direct style at Swansea City, aided by the quality of speedy young stars like Bersant Celina and Daniel James, who gave Manchester City a difficult time in their FA Cup clash earlier in the year. There are a handful of players already at the Amex Stadium who will perfectly compliment this preferred style of play and don’t be surprised to see the Seagulls cause some problems for the bigger, more dominant teams in the league with a counter-attacking approach.
With a degree in Social Sciences from the Open University, Potter is known for being a real man-manager and alongside his tactical innovation he will seek to provide a warm atmosphere in which the players can flourish, something which he earned heaps of praise for during his time in Sweden. Whether that will prove to be successful in the more intense environment of the Premier League remains to be seen.
Who can form a defensive partnership with Shane Duffy?
Although not yet confirmed at the time of writing, it appears as though Shane Duffy’s long-term centre-back partner Lewis Dunk could be set to leave the Amex Stadium. Leicester City appear to have lined up the 27 year old to replace England international Harry Maguire, who is on his way to Manchester United in an eye-watering deal that could be worth up to £80m.
Dunk and Duffy have been imperious at the back for Brighton in the last few seasons, helping to take the club into the Premier League and playing a huge part in keeping them there in the last two campaigns. Matt Clarke has arrived from Portsmouth but has minimal experience at just 22 years old whilst Leon Balogun made only eight appearances in his first season in the Premier League. Will a new man come in, or will Potter place faith in one of the options he already has at his disposal?
Where will Brighton finish this season?
We’re fans of Potter here at FootballTips and we are excited to see how he copes with the step up to the Premier League this season, but the Premier League appears to be getting more and more competitive by the season. The three teams that have come up from the Championship are making some solid additions and will have the momentum of promotion carrying them into the new campaign whereas at Brighton, it feels there is some uncertainty in the new era under Potter down in Sussex.
For us, Norwich have a little bit more quality and a more defined approach under Daniel Farke, who is entering his third season at the club, while Aston Villa have strengthened well and are playing in a more positive atmosphere under lifelong Villain Dean Smith in front of their own fans and we can see the Seagulls falling just short in their fight to stay up for a third consecutive season.
Relegation seems to be on the cards for Brighton in our opinion. The amount of teams who you can realistically expect to be dragged into the relegation race seems to diminish each year and after only surviving by two points last year, it seems likely that the Seagulls are one of the teams who could go down this term and that’s why we’re backing them to do so with our Brighton bet of the season.
18+ only. £/€10 deposit using promo code "10FREE" - Minimum stake £/€10 at odds of 1/2 (1.5) - Free bets credited upon qualifying bet settlement and expire after 7 days - Free bet stakes not included in returns - Casino Bonus must be claimed within 7 days • To withdraw bonus/related wins, wager the bonus amount 40 times within 14 days • Casino Bonus expires after 60 days - Withdrawal restrictions, payment methods, country & full T&Cs apply
18+ only. New customers only. Min Deposit: £10. First deposit matched up to £10. 1 x wagering at odds of 1.75+ to unlock Free Bet. Debit Card deposits only. This offer is valid for 7 days from your new account being registered. 18+. BeGambleAware.org. Bet The Responsible Way. Terms apply.
18+ only. New customers only. Min. deposit of £/€10. Qualifying real money bet of £/€10. Min odds greater than or equal to 1.5 required. E/W bets excluded. Offer credited within 48 hours. Additional T&Cs apply. Please gamble responsibly.
18+ only. New customers only. £10 min deposit & bet on sportsbook, placed & settled at 1.5 min odds within 14 days of sign-up. Win part of E/W bets. 2 non-withdrawable £10 Free Bet Tokens: accept in 7 days, valid for 7 days once credited (ex. E/Ws & Multiples stakes not returned. Full terms and conditions apply.
18+ only. New players only. Opt-in required. Minimum $/€/£10 qualifying bets. No cash-outs allowed. Free bet is a one-time stake of $/€/£ 30, minimum odds of 1.5, stake is not returned, maximum Conversion $/€/£ 20 , 10X wagering the winnings, valid for 7 Days from issue. Full Terms apply.
18+ only. New customers only. Place your FIRST bet on any Football market and if it loses we will refund your stake in CASH. Max refund for this offer is £20. Only deposits made using cards will qualify for this promotion. T&Cs apply.
18+ only. New Customers only. Bet £10* & Get £50* in Free Bets. Sign up, deposit between £5* and £10* to your account and bet365 will give you five times that value in Free Bets when you place qualifying bets to the same value and they are settled. Free Bets are paid as Bet Credits. Min odds/bet and payment method exclusions apply. Returns exclude Bet Credits stake. T&Cs, time limits & exclusions apply. BeGambleAware.org. *or currency equivalent.
Share this with your friends
Brighton & Hove Albion Tips & Betting Specials
After managing to avoid relegation by a narrow margin last season, how will Brighton & Hove Albion begin a new era under Graham Potter this time around?