Sheffield United impressed in midweek but must step up against Brighton
Brighton 1-1 Sheffield United
Slowly but surely, the weeks of this Premier League season are passing by – we can no longer call it the ‘new season’ when it is more than a third of the way through.
It is incredibly concerning, then, for Sheffield United fans that their team remain at the bottom with a solitary point from their 13 matches to date. Their manager Chris Wilder remains positive, but for how long?
That being said, they certainly upped their performance levels in their midweek fixture against Manchester United – The Blades took the lead, before almost coming back into the match late on after Man United had scored three. They looked more like the Sheffield United of last season.
Brighton remain one of the toughest teams to crack in the league, though are gradually slipping towards the relegation zone.
Only three bottom half teams have lost more than they have, but with just two wins under their belt, have struggled to turn good play into results.
Form Guide (all comps): WDLLD
Reasons to be cheerful:
Five points from five matches could be worse
Points will come if they continue playing well
Reasons to be fearful:
Won one of last 10 meetings
Winless in last 10 Premier League home matches
If Brighton, under head coach Graham Potter, can continue to play with the same performance levels for the remainder of the season, they should be comfortably safe in the Premier League, and even push a little higher than where they sit now, in 16th place.
They have some good players – Leandro Trossard for example has looked lively almost in every game he’s played. He’s also been desperately unlucky, hitting the woodwork four times this season, more than any other player in the league.
They may have to do without star right-back Tariq Lamptey who is suffering with an injury.
Like their opponents, Brighton are rarely comfortable beaten, with the 3-0 defeat against Leicester perhaps the only one-sided victory going against them.
By and large, they are a difficult team to beat, but will need to be up for a fight against a desperate Sheffield United side this weekend.
Star Man – Pascal Gross
Has been involved in four of Brighton’s last five goals (2 goals, 2 assists).
Form Guide (all comps): LLLLL
Reasons to be cheerful
Won two and draw one of their last three meetings with Brighton
Played much better against Manchester United
Reasons to be fearful
Have officially made the worst-ever start to an English top division season
The only side not to earn a clean sheet this season
Almost all of the statistics available suggest that things couldn’t get any worse for Chris Wilder’s Sheffield United side.
They not only sit bottom of the Premier League table, they are completed marooned, with just a single point from 13 matches, officially the worst-ever start to a season in an English top division.
That being said, they played with remarkable courage against a Manchester United side who have won all of their away matches this season. The Blades took the lead early on and gave the Red Devils a real run for their money, until the team from Manchester hit back with three goals either side of half time.
They looked more like the team which finished 9th last season, though they’ll need to get themselves up again for a potential relegation clash.
Star Man – David McGoldrick
His energetic performance against Man United was rewarded with two goals which almost claimed a point.
This will be a tight fought contest
Both managers will demand a high-energy performance
May finish honours even
At this stage, anything more than a point on the board would be a great result for Chris Wilde.
His Sheffield United showed improvement in midweek, but must now translate that to points. They have a good opportunity to do so against a Brighton side who have worked hard but failed to earn the points their displays deserve.
A draw could work well for both sides.
Brighton 1-1 Sheffield United