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A battle between Wout Weghorst and Dan Burn would have been one for the ages, but with Brighton allowing the 6ft 7in defender to head for Newcastle United, Burnley’s new talisman produced the goods alongside his teammates on the Amex turf.
Weghorst broke the deadlock with a powerful drive on February 19 before some strong hold-up play allowed him to find Josh Brownhill for Burnley’s second goal, and veteran attacker Aaron Lennon rounded off a storming Clarets performance in the second half.
Two consecutive defeats without a single goal has done Brighton’s bid for a top-half finish no favours, but the Seagulls have managed to maintain their ninth-placed ranking for the time being as a resurgent Southampton sit just one point behind.
The future of Graham Potter will continue to be called into question while Brighton seek to establish themselves as a top-10 Premier League side, but points at home have been difficult to come by, with Brighton winning just once in their last nine Amex outings.
Indeed, only four teams in Leeds United, Burnley, Watford and Norwich City have fared worse at home than resident draw specialists Brighton this season, but life at Villa under Steven Gerrard may not be as rosy as initially anticipated.
Brighton will be boosted by the return of Lewis Dunk from his one-game suspension, as Joel Veltman prepares to drop out of the defence, but Potter has conceded that Adam Webster has suffered a setback.
Enock Mwepu and Jeremy Sarmiento remain absent for the Seagulls, who may consider some changes in the final third in a bid to end their disappointing scoreless run.
Leandro Trossard will certainly expect to return to the first XI this weekend, with Solly March and Pascal Gross also waiting in the wings for the hosts.
As for Aston Villa, Gerrard also has a key central defender returning from suspension in the form of Ezri Konsa, who is sure to displace Calum Chambers in the heart of the rearguard alongside Tyrone Mings.
Chambers is more than capable of filling a midfield role if Gerrard demotes Douglas Luiz to the bench, while Bertrand Traore and Marvelous Nakamba represent the visitors’ only two injury concerns.
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It would not be surprising to see Gerrard immediately recall Ollie Watkins in place of Danny Ings, and Leon Bailey could provide some much-needed pace against Tariq Lamptey.
Brighton & Hove Albion possible starting lineup:
Sanchez; Lamptey, Dunk, Duffy, Cucurella; Lallana, Bissouma, Moder; Gross; Trossard, Maupay
Aston Villa possible starting lineup:
Martinez; Cash, Konsa, Mings, Digne; McGinn, Luiz, Ramsey; Bailey, Watkins, Coutinho