BRIGHTON travel to rock-bottom Norwich on Saturday in the Premier League. Jack Lambden (@_JackL_) analyses the encounter.
Norwich vs Brighton | Saturday 4th July 2020, 12:30 | BT Sport
Basement club Norwich need to start winning fast if they are to stand any chance of staying in the Premier League next season but it certainly doesn’t look good for the Canaries.
Manager Daniel Farke stated before the restart that his team needed at least five wins from their nine remaining matches to give themselves a chance which, at the time, looked ambitious to say the least but three league defeats later it looks close to impossible.
There was early season encouragement for Norwich – Teemu Pukki grabbing five goals in the first knockings of the campaign and brave performances over some of the big boys, including a 3-2 victory against then-Champions Manchester City. Despite that, Pukki’s early season form has dissipated and 60 goals conceded in 32 games is always going to lead to a year of trouble.
There’s some players within this Norwich squad that, in the likely situation that they drop back down into the Championship in the next few weeks, could be picked up by other Premier League teams with young talents Max Aarons, Jamal Lewis and Todd Cantwell all showing ability that, under the right coach, could be of real use.
This is the sort of match that Farke would have pinpointed at the start of the season as a must-win, so it certainly can be considered that now with six to play. Despite the need for three points, I can’t go near Norwich on the outrights here considering how blunt they look at the moment at the top end of the pitch, added to the soft goals they’re conceding game in, game out.
Simultaneously, Brighton – as I wrote about in previewing the Seagulls’ game against Manchester United – do not inspire much confidence either. It was always going to be a challenge to impose themselves in an empty stadium against an in-form United but Albion were miles off the pace, a worrying sign when the team is far from out of the mire yet.
With fixtures against Liverpool, Manchester City and Southampton to come, Brighton will look to pick up three points here to avoid a nervous final few weeks of the 2019/20 season. Neal Maupay will almost certainly return and I’d be surprised to see Leandro Trossard left out again given his bright cameo off the bench against United where he registered 3 shots.
The betting angle
My only bet of this game, given that I’m not overly complimentary about either side, will be to back corners – each team to have four or more at 10/11 with SkyBet.
Norwich games this season have averaged 11.9 corners and their three Premier League matches since the league restart have seen 35 shared between them. With 18 of those 35 being earned by the opponents however, 4+ each team seems a good way to go in a game that should be end-to-end.
Brighton too have seen high corner counts since the resumption in play, landing 4 or more in each of their matches behind closed doors.
The Seagulls possess plenty of players that love to shoot on sight which could be conducive to flag kicks in a game like this where both team’s need to be positive to stand any chance of coming away with a crucial three points.
Norwich vs Brighton – 4+ Corners Each Team (10/11 SkyBet)