BRIGHTON host Wolves on Super Sunday. We asked Tom Love (@TomLove_18) to source the best bets from the Premier League encounter.
Brighton v Wolves | Sunday 8th December 2019, 16:30 | Sky Sports
It’s not the most glamorous Super Sunday but nevertheless this should be an intriguing battle in East Sussex. Brighton were excellent at The Emirates on Thursday evening – it’s no surprise really given the fact Arsenal concede the third-highest volume of shots in the league – but it was a deserved victory for the Seagulls who won the shot count 20-12, as well as the Expected Goals (xG) battle 1.99-1.03.
Albion were easy on the eye and played with a belief that you wouldn’t expect of side who, before that game, were just a single point off the drop zone. Brighton went with two up top with both Neal Maupay and Aaron Connolly starting and Graham Potter’s call paid off. They tend to operate with quite a few central midfielders on the pitch but the likes of Pascal Gross and Aaron Mooy do get freedom to drift wide and get deliveries into the box.
Seagulls’ style shift
I do think if Brighton survive this season it can be said as a success. They are clearly a well ran club and they’re trying to garner a distinct identity on and off the pitch. Owner Tony Bloom decided to hand Potter a four-year contract and with their modern stadium and sizeable fanbase, they look a club well set to progress in the next few years.
To go from quite a direct and stand-offish approach of Chris Hughton to a possession-based ethos under Potter, it’s obviously going to take time to be implemented fully. Hughton did a great job with what he had at The AMEX but I personally think changing him for Potter was a good decision from a long-term perspective.
You can see the change in methodology in the stats too; last season the player with the highest average passes per-game was Dale Stephens with 45, this season its Lewis Dunk with 67. In fact, five players average more than the top passer last season and the Albion are dominating possession in most of their games.
One thing Brighton haven’t always got right has been recruitment. They’re heavily focused on player data when looking at bringing someone in and they look to have made some canny additions with Adam Webster, Aaron Mooy and Neal Maupay all entering the door this summer. Dan Burn has been brought in from the cold to play an unfamiliar left-back role but he has impressed when been called upon.
Adama to put on the afterburners
Potter has played Burn at left back for the majority of the season but it will be interesting if he switches the 6ft 6 giant in order to combat the searing speed of Adama Traore. It would be extremely harsh to drop the former Darlington man but it could make sense given his lack of pace.
If Burn does start I will be backing him to be carded at 15/4 (Unibet). If he doesn’t start then I’ll be backing whoever does play at left back for the Seagulls.
Aaron Cresswell became the sixth left back of the season to be booked against Wolves when Traore has played. In the 11 matches the former Barcelona speedster has played 45 or more minutes in this season, six of the oppositions’ left backs have been cautioned.
It’s no surprise either, Adama has lightning acceleration and often tricks his opposite number by slowing down, drawing the defender to the ball before shooting off down the wing. Pretty much no one can match his pace so the only option is to foul him or Wolves can get into 3 vs 3 situations.
Irrelevant of how many cards the respective left back has picked up in the past, if you back this train of thought blindly this season I know you will make money, it did last season and it is again this.
An alternative angle
The bookies are struggling to separate the pair in the 1X2 market but I've found a gem of a bet that you won't have considered.
Doing my research for this also drew my eye to a fantastic looking bet that has landed in 11/15 Brighton games and 12/15 Wolves games. Combine those stats and Exactly 2-3 Goals (20/21 Bet365) have been scored in a collective 23/30 games between the pair this season.
We can back this at a smidgen under even-money with bet365 so it looks like a nice slice of value. We get a whole host of possible scorelines on our side here and is a refreshing alternative to the over/under markets.