Brighton will be bouncing after beating Man Utd last week but a trip to Anfield to face Liverpool looks like being far too much for them to handle.
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Liverpool v Brighton (1730 BST, BT Sport 1)
Few expected Brighton to get anything from their home clash with Manchester United last week - and the underdogs title treated them well as they ran out 3-2 winners at the Amex.
Once again they go into the weekend with absolutely nothing expected from them - although they were as large as 27/1 for the win last week, they have been cut to a best price of 22s this time around.
To beat Manchester United is one thing, but to follow that up with a result against Liverpool in their own back yard is another and it is very difficult to see that happening here.
Last week they faced a club currently all over the place from top to bottom, with problems on and off-field for Jose Mourinho to deal with, whereas they come up against a Liverpool side ready to mount a realistic assault for the title.
Title contenders do not mess up in home fixtures like this and we expect Jurgen Klopp's side to do the job after winning against Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park - a bit of a bogey ground in previous years.
Prediction: Liverpool 3-0 Brighton (Sky Bet odds: 11/2)
The Seagulls had the worst away record in the league last year and started this season in the same form with a disappointing loss at Watford. They looked miles better against Man Utd but Jose Mourinho's side hardly impressed, and Liverpool at Anfield is an entirely different prospect these days.
Best Bet: Sadio Mane to score in 90 minutes at 11/10
Mane has arguably been in the best form of Liverpool's terrifying trio so far this season, netting in both games and looking a bit sharper than Salah and Firmino. There's no reason he can't make it three in a row in this one.
Scorer: Daniel Sturridge to score the last goal at 3/1
Can lightning strike twice? There's certainly a great case for it as Sturridge looked sharper than he has for some time in pre-season, and scored with his first touch against West Ham. Firmino looked a bit off the pace at Palace on Mondy so Sturridge could get on a bit earlier than against the Hammers - but he only needs one touch!
Selected RequestABet: Liverpool win, over 2.5 goals, Mane to score, 12+ match corners at 6/1
All perfectly achievable targets in three markets for a healthy return. The Reds had seven corners against Palace and Brighton will set up similarly in defending narrow so the space out wide should provide plenty of corner opportunities. Mane explained above.
Opta pre-match statistics
- Liverpool have won their last five matches against the Seagulls in all competitions, scoring 20 goals and conceding just five.
- Brighton have lost seven of their nine league trips to Anfield (W1 D1), with their only victory coming in March 1982 when Andy Ritchie scored the only goal in a 1-0 win.
- Liverpool scored nine goals against Brighton in the Premier League last season (5-1 away, 4-0 at home) – they’ve only scored more times against an opponent twice previously in a single Premier League season (10 v Norwich in 2012-13, 11 v Ipswich in 2001-02).
- Brighton have scored three own-goals in their last three matches against Liverpool, two of which came from Lewis Dunk (in February 2012 and December 2017); the other was scored by Liam Bridcutt in their 6-1 defeat in the FA Cup in February 2012.
- In all competitions, Brighton manager Chris Hughton has lost his last 12 away matches against the Premier League’s ‘big six’ teams, seeing his teams scoring three times while conceding 38 goals in those games.
- Brighton manager Chris Hughton has lost all five of his Premier League matches against Liverpool, with his sides conceding at least four goals in every game (2-5, 0-5 and 1-5 at Norwich, 1-5 and 0-4 at Brighton).
- Liverpool are unbeaten in each of their last 22 Premier League games at Anfield (W14 D8), keeping a clean sheet in the last six. The Reds last kept seven consecutive home shutouts in the top-flight in February 2007 (9) under Rafael Benítez.
- Brighton haven’t won any of their last 14 Premier League games on the road (D4 L10), with the Seagulls failing to net in 10 of those matches, including at Anfield in May (0-4).
- Since the start of last season, Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah has been directly involved in 44 Premier League goals, (33 goals, 11 assists), 11 more than any other player in this period.
- Following his goal against Crystal Palace, Liverpool’s James Milner extended his current record for the most Premier League games scored in without losing any of them (48 games: W38 D10 L0) – he is also one goal away from reaching 50 in the competition.
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Odds correct as of 1250 BST on 24/08/18