Arsenal at home is next. 👀🔜 pic.twitter.com/bTEledx3sj
— Brighton & Hove Albion (@OfficialBHAFC) September 30, 2021
Arsenal and Brighton have a bit of history. Recent I know but there was the injury to Bernd Leno, the spat at the end involving Matteo Guendouzi and now the above which you can draw your own conclusion as to what it means. The bloke in the photo, Maupay, was involved in it all. What followed was a strange string of events really for Arsenal. Emi Martinez stepped took over in goal and excelled but was then sold. In came Runasson who was so inexperienced, Arsenal had to bring in Matt Ryan on loan and it was he who was in goal for Brighton back in June 2020.
Arsenal won the FA Cup at the end of that Covid hit season. Brighton won nothing. The 20201/21 season brought better results against Graham Potter’s team. At The Amex, Alexandre Lacazette scored the only goal of the game to ensure Arsenal left the south coast with maximum points and then earlier this year, the final fixture of last season, two goals from Pepe ensured Potter’s men went back to the south coast with nothing.
An extra bit of spice to today’s fixture is that Ben White will be lining up against his old team.
Brighton are the team being talked about at the moment, probably because a win against Crystal Palace last Monday night would have left the top of the League. They drew thanks to a 95th minute goal from Maupay. They got lucky, very very lucky. Their victories have come against Burnley, Watford, Leicester City and Brentford.
Enock Mwepu and Marc Cucerella joined Brighton in the summer along with keeper Kjell Scherpen who has been injured and a couple of others who went straight out on loan. I’ve no idea whether or not they’ve made much of an impact on their team performances. What’s more important to Arsenal fans is the impact our new players have had on Mikel Arteta’s team.
Arsenal’s only injury is Granit Xhaka. Brighton have lots according to Graham Potter but we’ll see how many manage to make a miraculous recovery before 5.30pm.
Arsenal have had a week of basking in the warm and fuzzy feeling after the NLD win but that ends today. Today is about a totally different game and opposition. Potter’s team will be more aggressive, will press high up the pitch and I think they’ll have more energy in attack than the likes of Kane and Son offered.
I’ve watched a few clips of Brighton and in my opinion, Arsenal can get through, over and behind their defence with ease if the passing is swift and accurate. Leicester beat their defence three times but the offside flag ruled out two. Crystal Palace could have won, as could Brentford but as we know, if a team can’t score goals, they won’t win football matches.
I hope Mikel Arteta’s team take their game to Brighton. Hit them hard and fast early and be ruthless in front of goal. As said last weekend after the Toots game, Arsenal can’t afford to undo all the good they’ve done over the last couple of weeks by putting in a lacklustre performance today. For what it’s worth, I don’t think they will.
Finally, the under 23’s thumped Brighton 3-0 last night, playing their first ever fixture at The Emirates. Balogun scored two, Salah-Eddine with the other. Kevin Betsy’s team now sit pretty at the top of their table. For now anyway.
See you in the comments.