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    ʕ ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) Dick Head's Avatar
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    Chelsea vs Brighton & Hove Albion *** Official Match Thread ***


    6 Not allowed!


    Chelsea v Brighton

    PREMIER LEAGUE

    Venue: Stamford Bridge
    Date: Tuesday 26th December 2017
    Kick-off: 15:00 GMT
    Referee: The Complete And Utter Shyster
    Assistants: Ian Hussin, Daniel Cook
    Fourth official: Lee Probert



    TEAM NEWS

    Chelsea top scorer Alvaro Morata has completed his one-match ban and is set to return for the visit of Brighton.

    David Luiz is still out with a knee injury and midfielder Charly Musonda is absent because of a groin problem.

    Brighton defender Shane Duffy is available again after serving a one-game suspension.

    On-loan forward Izzy Brown is ineligible against his parent club, while Steve Sidwell remains sidelined with a back injury.

    MOTD COMMENTATOR'S NOTES

    Jonathan Pearce: "With the teams around them in the table all having winnable-looking back-to-back games to round off 2017, Chelsea must take advantage of this game, and Stoke at home on Saturday.

    "They deserved better at Everton. Twenty-five shots was their highest tally in a Premier League game without scoring since January 2014.

    "Brighton's first win in eight games, against Watford, has restored confidence. It was lovely to see Connor Goldson turning in a man-of-the-match performance nine months after life-saving heart surgery. Shane Duffy's return from suspension gives Chris Hughton a selection headache.

    "They will be conservative. If they're too cautious, Chelsea will pick them off as Arsenal,Manchester United and Tottenham have done. But if they counter with urgency, they could get a surprise draw here against tired Chelsea legs."



    WHAT THE MANAGERS SAY

    Chelsea head coach Antonio Conte on the forthcoming transfer window: "If there is the possibility to improve the squad on the numerical aspect, I think it would be a good choice.

    "But, at the same time, I'm enjoying working with these players. At this moment, I'm ready to continue to play with all these players."

    Brighton manager Chris Hughton: "We go to Chelsea knowing in most people's minds it is difficult to get a result there.

    "There aren't too many who will expect that but that's the challenge, and for this club and these players these are the challenges we have been looking forward to the most.

    "In the other big games, apart from Liverpool [a 5-1 defeat], we have been in the games."

    MATCH FACTS

    Head-to-head

    • Brighton won the first meeting between the sides in January 1933 but have lost six and drawn one of the subsequent seven.
    • Their most recent clash was in March 1989, a 1-0 away win for Chelsea in Division Two thanks to Kevin Wilson's goal.
    • Brighton have only scored once in the last six meetings.


    Chelsea

    • Chelsea have won five successive league matches at Stamford Bridge since a 1-0 defeat against Manchester City on 30 September.
    • Three of those five victories have come by a 1-0 scoreline.
    • The Blues are unbeaten in their last 12 Boxing Day Premier League games (W7, D5).
    • Chelsea have won eight of their last 11 games in the Premier League (D2, L1).
    • Chelsea have 39 points at the halfway point of the Premier League season, which is 10 fewer than they had at this stage last season, when they went on to win the title.


    Brighton

    • Brighton have won just one of their last eight (D3, L4) and have only scored twice in their last six league matches.
    • The Seagulls have scored five goals in their nine away league matches this season.
    • They have lost their last three away league games without scoring.
    • Brighton are on an eight-match winless league run on Boxing Day (D3, L5).
    • Pascal Gross has been directly involved in nine Premier League goals this season (four goals, five assists), four more than any other Brighton player.
    Mackay: I'm going to book you for that.
    Cooper: You what?
    Mackay: What's your name, Cooper?
    Cooper: Cooper.

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