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Premier League | Gameweek 23
Feb 3, 2024 at 3pm UK
The American Express Community Stadium

4 - 1
Crystal Palace

Dunk (3'), Hinshelwood (33'), Buonanotte (34'), Pedro (85')
De Zerbi (7'), Welbeck (90+2')
FT(HT: 3-0)
Mateta (71')
Guehi (16'), Franca (59'), Munoz (62')

Preview: Brighton & Hove Albion vs. Crystal Palace - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Brighton & Hove Albion vs. Crystal Palace - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Saturday's Premier League clash between Brighton & Hove Albion and Crystal Palace, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

Battered and bruised from a Kenilworth Road dismantling, Brighton & Hove Albion seek to right their midweek wrongs when Crystal Palace visit the Amex for the latest edition of the so-called M23 derby.

Roberto De Zerbi oversaw a humiliating 4-0 loss to Luton Town last time out, while Roy Hodgson's men made it back-to-back home wins with a 3-2 victory over basement boys Sheffield United.

Match preview

Since ending 2023 with a 4-2 crushing of Tottenham Hotspur, Brighton & Hove Albion have followed a peculiar attacking pattern of one goal-laden display followed by a scoreless outing, complementing 0-0 draws with West Ham United and Wolverhampton Wanderers with FA Cup thrashings of Stoke City and Sheffield United.

Five goals flew past beleaguered Blades goalkeeper Ivo Grbic in Brighton's statement knockout success last weekend, but Seagulls shot-stopper Jason Steele would be the one picking the ball out of the back of the net multiple times on Tuesday night, as Luton emphatically marched to their biggest Premier League win yet.

Hat-trick hero Elijah Adebayo was simply too hot for De Zerbi's men to handle on the night, as the 26-year-old wrote his name into Luton folklore with the Hatters' first-ever Premier League treble, while Chiedozie Ogbene also sent the home crowd into pandemonium during an awe-inspiring performance.

Amid persistent links with a possible step up the ladder to Liverpool head coach, De Zerbi issued a grovelling apology to the travelling Brighton faithful after their six-game unbeaten run in all tournaments came to an end, but they are still in the continental conversation in eighth place in the table.

Manchester United could demote Brighton to ninth place depending on how they fare against Wolverhampton Wanderers, though, and Gary O'Neil's side were coincidentally the ones to snap the Seagulls' 18-game scoring streak at home in the Premier League on January 22, but De Zerbi's men need only draw on Saturday to make it 10 Amex games unbeaten in the top flight.

The usual suspects were up to their usual tricks when Palace welcomed Sheffield United to Selhurst Park on Tuesday, where the Eagles were also left aghast by a first-minute goal by Ben Brereton Diaz, but Roy Hodgson's dazzling duo single-handedly turned the tie on its head.

Twice Michael Olise found Eberechi Eze for a pair of Palace goals later in the first half, and while James McAtee had briefly restored the Blades' lead in between Eze's brace, Chris Wilder's men would ultimately succumb to an exquisite 20-yard Olise strike after the restart.

By virtue of breaking their three-game run without a win or even a goal - which had stood since the turn of the year - 14th-placed Palace now have a six-point buffer to Everton in the relegation zone, but safety is far from assured, and fan discontent is far from extinguished.

Amid their upturn in fortunes at Selhurst Park, Palace travel south to meet their long-time adversaries having failed to win any of their last six matches on the road in all tournaments, being beaten in each of their last three such matches versus Arsenal, Everton and Chelsea.

Furthermore, not since the behind-closed-doors era of the 2020-21 season have Palace come up trumps against Brighton in the Premier League, although four of the last five M23 derbies have ended in a 1-1 stalemate, including December's Selhurst Park encounter where Jordan Ayew and Danny Welbeck both made the net bulge.

Brighton & Hove Albion Premier League form:

Brighton & Hove Albion form (all competitions):

Crystal Palace Premier League form:

Crystal Palace form (all competitions):

Team News

Two injuries were added to insult for Brighton in their embarrassing loss at Luton, as James Milner's race was run with just 20 minutes gone due to a thigh concern, while attacker Joao Pedro came off on the 71-minute mark with a knock sustained when trying to win the ball back.

De Zerbi - who took issue with Pedro himself for picking up the avoidable problem - has not ruled the attacker out of this one, but Milner's issue is a more serious one, so Jack Hinshelwood should gear up for a return to the XI.

Solly March (knee), Julio Enciso (knee) and Joel Veltman (knee) are still missing too, while Ansu Fati (thigh) will only make the bench at best, and Japan's Kaoru Mitoma and Ivory Coast's Simon Adingra will soon compete in the quarter-finals of the Asian Cup and Africa Cup of Nations respectively.

Hodgson can empathise with De Zerbi when it comes to dealing with two new injury concerns, but Palace's fresh blows are particularly significant ones, as neither Eze nor Olise were able to see out the full 90 minutes against Sheffield United due to knocks.

The Eagles boss confirmed that Eze "felt his hamstring" and would be sent for a scan on Friday, but there is hope that Olise - whose substitution was a precautionary one - will be able to take part in the derby.

Saturday's game could also see new recruits Adam Wharton and Daniel Munoz make their Palace debuts following their arrivals from Blackburn Rovers and Genk respectively, but Joel Ward (thigh), Rob Holding (ankle) and Cheick Doucoure (Achilles) are all unavailable.

Brighton & Hove Albion possible starting lineup:
Verbruggen; Webster, Dunk, Igor; Hinshelwood, Baleba, Gross, Estupinan; Lallana; Welbeck, Ferguson

Crystal Palace possible starting lineup:
Henderson; Richards, Andersen, Guehi, Mitchell; Lerma, Hughes, Schlupp; Olise, Mateta, Ayew

We say: Brighton & Hove Albion 2-1 Crystal Palace

The result of Saturday's M23 derby may very well hinge on the respective fitness levels of Eze and Olise, but even if the duo are given the green light to line up, they cannot single-handedly solve Palace's perennial concerns at the back.

As chastening as Tuesday night was for Brighton, De Zerbi's men have developed a resilient streak at the Amex and should thrive under the pressure of making amends in front of their own fans, so we expect Saturday's crunch clash to go the way of the Seagulls.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

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Premier League Table
CManchester CityMan City38287396346291
4Aston Villa382081076611568
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs382061274611366
7Newcastle UnitedNewcastle381861485622360
8Manchester UnitedMan Utd38186145758-160
9West Ham UnitedWest Ham381410146074-1452
10Crystal Palace381310155758-149
11Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton381212145562-748
14Wolverhampton WanderersWolves38137185065-1546
17Nottingham ForestNott'm Forest3899204967-1832
RLuton TownLuton3868245285-3326
RSheffield UnitedSheff Utd38372835104-6916
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