Premier League Stories - Episode 9Sep 28
Brighton Fan’s Premier League Season Preview
After avoiding a return to the Championship last season, can Brighton and their highly-rated manager Graham Potter improve on their 16th-place finish?
Ahead of a brand new season of Premier League football on BT Sport, we spoke to fans of each and every team about their expectations for what lies ahead over the next nine months.
Last season we were a goalscorer away from a top-half finish.
We ended up finishing 16th in the league but if you look at our xG we should have finished fifth, which is absolutely insane.
Realistically this season all hinges on whether we can bring in a striker.
If we find someone who can score goals then there’s no reason why we can’t finish in the top 10 and beat our best ever finish of 13th.
The Premier League is so tight, one week you can be on course for the top half, the next you’re in a relegation battle.
If we don’t sign a striker we will be pinning all our hopes on the same four players who failed to deliver goals last season.
We all knew we needed a striker last summer but Potter backed himself to coach more goals out of the existing forwards. If he tries that again we could be in big trouble.
Most important player
Pascal Gross. In the first half of last season he only started five league games and we won two from 18.
He’s incredibly hard-working and versatile, but he’s also got an end product. People might be surprised to learn he’s got the second most assists by a German in Premier League history behind Mesut Ozil.
He’s also a leader in a squad that is not bursting with leadership qualities.
There are a lot of good players coming through Brighton's academy at the minute, although a lot follow the 'Ben White' path and head out on loan to work through League Two, One and Championship before having a crack at the Premier League.
Presuming he isn't farmed out loan then Reda Khadra might be one to keep an eye on.
He is an exciting winger signed last summer from Borussia Dortmund who was in and around the first team squad last season, including a decent cameo on debut away at Manchester City.
What I’ve missed the most
I’ve missed the social side more than anything.
My friend and I have a ritual whereby if Brighton haven't played well in the first half, we have a pint and a glass of red wine at half time based on the fact that the first time we did it, we came from 2-0 down to beat Charlton back in 2015.
In many ways, the 90 minutes of football is often the sideshow to the fun and games of the day out.
12th. I'd take a four-position improvement and a comfortable distance between us and the relegation zone.