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Match Preview: Brighton & Hove Albion vs Derby County

The Seagulls will host a Derby side looking to keep their dying Play-Off hopes alive on Friday night.

Team News

Key defender Shane Duffy picked up a foot injury in the closing stages of Brighton’s 3-0 defeat to Nottingham Forest last weekend and is set to miss the next 6 weeks, so Vegard Forren, signed on loan from Molde FK, looks set for a début.

Gaetan Bong (knee) and Sebastien Pocognoli (groin) will both miss out, but Arsenal loanee Chuba Akpom could see a return to the bench for the Seagulls.

For the visitors, George Thorne (fractured leg) and Craig Forsyth (knee) both remain sidelined, as does Jason Shackell, who is out with a back injury.

Captain Richard Keogh may feature however after returning from a calf injury which he picked up before the Rams’ game against relegation strugglers Blackburn Rovers.

Last Meeting

The previous meeting between these two sides was on the opening day, and marked now-departed manager Nigel Pearson’s first game in charge of the Rams.

The two sides matched each other for large spells of the game, with Brighton edging the better of the chances, but neither side could find a way through, and a 0-0 draw was a decent result for two teams who would’ve been eager to start the season off on a positive note.

The Verdict

The home side are overwhelming favourites for this contest and with good reason. The Seagulls made up for a recent wobble by comfortably dispatching lowly Rotherham 2-0 last weekend, and they look good money to build on this with another victory here.

Derby come into this game off the back of a 1-1 draw in which summer signing Matej Vydra bagged a rare goal. The Czech striker’s first season in Derbyshire has been a rocky ride, but that goal could be exactly what the former Watford man needs to kickstart his form.

With the Rams’ arriving on the south coast on the back of 3 defeats in 6 games, it’s hard to envisage anything but a home victory, but if Tom Ince and Matej Vydra can strike up a partnership going forward, Derby could certainly cause Brighton some problems.

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