Saturday 26 Dec
Updated Sunday 27 Dec 11:25
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West Ham United v Brighton & Hove Albion - All you need to know

West Ham United v Brighton & Hove Albion - All you need to know

 

West Ham United host their final home game of an unforgettable - or maybe that should be forgettable - 2020 on Sunday afternoon.

The Hammers host Brighton & Hove Albion at London Stadium in their 15th Premier League game of the season, with kick-off at 2.15pm.

The Irons go into the post-Christmas round of fixtures tenth in the table, with 21 points from 14 games, while the Seagulls are 17th with 12 points, just two above Fulham in the final relegation position.

Following the Government’s announcement that London is now in Tier 4 of COVID-19 restrictions, supporters will regrettably no longer be able to attend this game. Following the move of London into Tier 4, all sporting events held in the capital will continue to be played without supporters present until further notice. 

The match will be shown live in the UK by Sky Sports and across the world by the Premier League’s international broadcast partners, meaning our fans will be able to follow the action, safely, from home.

You can order a copy of the 116-page Official Programme for your collection here, complete with an A2 double-sided poster featuring the 2020/21 squad. A FREE digital edition is available to read online on whufc.com from 12noon on Boxing Day.

 

Official Programme v Brighton

 

Team news

West Ham United could welcome back Michail Antonio, who has missed the last five matches with a hamstring injury picked up in the home win over Aston Villa on 30 November. However, manager David Moyes says Antonio's condition would be monitored in the build-up to the game.

Arthur Masuaku is definitely unavailable after undergoing surgery to mend a long-standing knee problem.

Brighton & Hove Albion are hoping influential right-back Tariq Lamptey recovers from his own hamstring injury. The 20-year-old missed the Seagulls' 1-1 draw with Sheffield United before Christmas.

However, winger Jose Izquierdo and forward Florin Andone are both definitely sidelined with thigh and knee injuries respectively.

 

The opposition – Brighton & Hove Albion

The common consensus is that Brighton & Hove Albion have not got the points return their performances have warranted so far this season.

The Seagulls recorded just two wins in their opening 14 matches – albeit creditable victories in challenging surroundings away at Newcastle United and Aston Villa – and have dropped to 17th in the table.

Alongside those two wins, Brighton also scored six draws, including impressive points on the road at Crystal Palace and at home to champions Liverpool, while they also pushed Manchester United, Tottenham Hotspur and Southampton hard, before losing to all three by the odd goal.

Brighton are playing a brand of football that, statistics-wise, should see their results pick up as the season progresses.

 

Brighton celebrate a goal

 

Graham Potter’s side rank seventh in both shots per game (12.6) and possession (52.5%), tenth in average passes attempted (478.7) and eleventh in pass-completion (81%).

However, that ability to keep the ball and create chances has not translate into enough goals, with Brighton scoring just 16 in their opening 14 games.

Defensively, Brighton ranked sixth in tackles per game (16.4) and eleventh in interceptions (10.4), but again those numbers have not been converted into results, with Brighton conceding 22 goals and keeping just three clean sheets in those 14 matches.

With a squad the majority of whom have either been with the club in the Premier League since promotion in 2017, or have extensive top-flight experience with other clubs, the suspicion is that Brighton will have enough to stay up, but they need to start turning statistics into points soon if they are to avoid a season of relegation-related stress.

 

Previous meetings

West Ham United and Brighton & Hove Albion meet in the Premier League for just the seventh time on Sunday afternoon.

The Hammers are still seeking their first Premier League win over the Seagulls, having lost the first three meetings and drawn the last three, with all six matches taking place over the previous three seasons.

The most-recent two fixtures at London Stadium ended 2-2 in January 2019 and 3-3 in February this year.

Last season’s meeting saw Issa Diop and Robert Snodgrass put the Hammers 2-0 up at half-time before an Angelo Ogbonna own-goal halved the deficit two minutes after the break. Snodgrass’s second made it 3-1 before goals from Pascal Groß and Glenn Murray inside the last 15 minutes secure a share of the spoils.

 

Robert Snodgrass celebrates scoring against Brighton last season

 

David Moyes has faced Brighton just twice in his long managerial career, and is also still seeking his first victory. The first occasion was in February 2018, when the Seagulls ran out 3-1 winners at the Amex Stadium, and the second in February this year, as summarised above.

The second of those fixtures was also the only occasion on which he has faced Graham Potter as a manager.

West Ham's last win over Brighton came in April 2012, when a Ricardo Vaz Te hat-trick saw off the Seagulls 6-0 at the Boleyn Ground. Current first-team coach Kevin Nolan scored the winner in the reverse fixture at the Amex in October 2011.

 

By the numbers

11    Alec George Foreman scored in an incredible eleven straight fixtures against Brighton & Hove Albion during the Second World War. Born in Walthamstow, centre-forward Foreman made just nine competitive appearances for the Hammers, six in the Second Division in 1938/39 and three in the FA Cup in 1945/46, but his most-prolific seasons came during the War. Foreman scored 186 goals in 225 war-time outings, including 17 in eleven appearances against the Seagulls.

6-0    Ricardo Vaz Te (pictured) scored his only hat-trick for West Ham United in a 6-0 Championship victory over Brighton & Hove Albion at the Boleyn Ground in April 2012. Kevin Nolan, Carlton Cole and a Gary Dicker own-goal secured the Hammers’ biggest-ever competitive win over the Seagulls.

3    The last nine meetings between the two clubs have ended, in sequence, in three West Ham United victories, three Brighton & Hove Albion wins and three draws. The most-recent three meetings, all in the Premier League, ended 2-2 at London Stadium in January 2019, 1-1 at the Amex in August 20 last year, and 3-3 at London Stadium in February this year.

4    Charles Satterthwaite scored four of West Ham United’s five goals in a 5-0 Southern League Division One win over Brighton & Hove Albion in February 1904 – making him the only player to do so for the Hammers in a game against the Seagulls. Satterthwaite also scored in each of the first two meetings between the two clubs – a 3-2 Brighton win in October 1903 and 4-0 FA Cup third qualifying round win at the Memorial Grounds a fortnight later.

 

Vaz Te scores

 

1910    Penalty-taking goalkeeper George Kitchen scored one spot-kick and missed a second in West Ham United’s 3-1 Southern League First Division win over Brighton & Hove Albion at the Boleyn Ground on 5 November 1910.

1    Frank Lampard was sent-off for the only time in his 670-game West Ham United career in the Hammers’ 3-1 First Division defeat by Brighton & Hove Albion at the Goldstone Ground in October 1982. Brighton started the season well, but ended it bottom of the table and relegated, as well as beaten FA Cup finalists, while the Hammers finished eighth.

2020    Tomáš Souček made his West Ham United debut in the 3-3 Premier League draw with Brighton & Hove Albion at London Stadium on 1 February 2020. He is one of eight players to have made their Hammers bow against the Seagulls, with the others being Jordan Hugill, Luis Boa Morte, Francois van der Elst, William Kennedy, Dan Woodards, James Jackson and Fred Brunton.

24    The following 24 players have been on the books of both West Ham United and Brighton & Hove Albion: Sam Baldock, Wayne Bridge, Dennis Burnett, Greg Campbell, Sebastien Carole, Alan Curbishley, Brian Dear, Tommy Dixon, Almeric Hall, Samuel Jennings, Paul Kitson, Bertie Lutton, Tommy McAteer, Keith McPherson, Harry Medhurst, George Parris, Dave Sexton, Mike Small, Sam Small, Tony Stokes, Mauricio Taricco, Matthew Upson, Len Young and Bobby Zamora.

 

Match officials

 

Referee: Simon Hooper 
Assistant Referees: Matthew Jones and Derek Eaton
Fourth Official: Lee Mason
VAR: Andrew Madley
Assistant VAR: Andrew Halliday

Born in Swindon in Wiltshire in July 1982, Simon Hooper has been a member of the Select Group of Premier League referees since 2018.

Prior to his appointment to the Select Group, Hooper was appointed to the National List in 2008.

He was promoted to Select Group 2 in 2016 and took charge of the 2017 League One Play-Off final between Bradford City and Millwall at Wembley.

The 38-year-old has taken charge of four West Ham United fixtures previously – a 1-0 home win over Coventry City in the Championship in January 2012, a 3-0 Carabao Cup third round win over Bolton Wanderers in September 2017, a 2-0 Premier League defeat at AFC Bournemouth in January 2019 and the 5-1 win over Hull City in this season’s EFL Cup third round here at London Stadium in September.

Hooper has refereed Brighton & Hove Albion on more occasions, 24, than any other club, including the Seagulls’ 4-2 Premier League defeat at Everton in October this year.

 

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