West Bromwich Albion fans are travelling in good numbers for the Championship club’s fourth round FA Cup tie at Premier League Brighton & Hove Albion. Well over 3000 Baggies fans have bought tickets for the game at the Amex Stadium, and Darren Moore’s side can expect some noisy backing from the travelling West Midlands hordes.
Chris Hughton’s Brighton side head into this game on the back of two consecutive Premier League defeats, so will want to get back into form against the Championship side. Those defeats came at home to Liverpool, when they were beaten 1-0 in a creditable performance, and 2-1 away at Manchester United. WBA will provide the Seagulls with a very different type of challenge. Playing at home, the Premier League side are strong favourites for the tie, but must not fall victim to complacency.
Brighton vs WBA Prediction: Brighton 2-1 West Brom
Our prediction for the outcome of this game is that the home side will win 2-1. West Brom will be well motivated for the game and, backed by a noisy contingent of travelling supporters, will push Brighton hard, especially early on. The Baggies may even take the lead, and force Brighton to make changes to their game plan. We anticipate, though, that, in the end, the Premier League quality and experience of the Seagulls will see them prevail. It will be a close game, though, and WBA may well come away feeling that they should have won.
Our recommended tip: Brighton, both score
Our featured tip for this fourth round FA Cup clash comes courtesy of William Hill, who are offering tempting odds of 16/5 on Brighton to win, and both teams to score. We suspect that this will be a really exciting game, with at least three goals scored. Backing Brighton to win, with both teams scoring, matches our prediction of a 2-1 win for the Seagulls, but also gives you a bit of flexibility when it comes to the actual final scoreline. Odds of 16/5 mean that the rewards are potentially very good too for this bet.
Given the history and pedigree of these two sides, it is somewhat surprising that they have only played each other on 22 previous occasions in all competitions. WBA have won 10 of those games, Brighton have won five, and there have been seven draws. Last season, both sides were in the Premier League, and faced each other in a competitive game for the first time since 1993, when they were both in the old Division Two. Brighton won 3-1 at home last season in the first game, while the Baggies won at The Hawthorns in the second, triumphing 2-0.
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Players to watch: Glenn Murray & Dwight Gayle
Brighton’s veteran striker Glenn Murray continues to defy Old Father Time and keeps banging in the goals for his club. The 35-year-old front man is the Seagulls’ top scorer this season, having netted eight goals in 23 games in the Premier League in 2018/19. Murray would surely love a trip to Wembley for an FA Cup final at this time of year, and is sure to be well-motivated for this game.
WBA striker Dwight Gayle is his club’s top scorer this season, having netted 14 goals in 23 games in all competitions for the Championship outfit. Currently on loan at Albion from Newcastle United, the striker will be keen to show what he can do against a Premier League outfit on Saturday. It is worth keeping an eye on how he combines with fellow forwards Hal Robson-Kanu and Jay Rodriguez.