Brighton edge Norwich closer to relegation

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Brighton beat Norwich 1-0 at Carrow Road on Saturday to all but secure their Premier League safety and push Norwich closer towards a prompt return to the second-tier.

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Leandro Trossard swept home the only goal of the game in the first half as Brighton defended well and Norwich had plenty of possession, as always, but couldn’t make it count.

With the win Brighton move on to 36 points, while Norwich have lost all four of their games since the restart and remain bottom of the table on 21 points, seven points from safety with five games to go.


Three things we learned

1. Same old story for Norwich: Lovely flicks, patient build up and then, well, nothing. Norwich are good to watch, their full backs bomb on in support of attacks but they had no cutting edge at all. Then they were hit on the counter time and time again as Brighton just had to connect a few passes out wide to be down the other end of the pitch in moments. Norwich have tried to play the right way but since December there’s be no cutting edge up top and that is why they are likely to be relegated. Norwich have lost six-straight games in all competitions and they just haven’t been good enough this season.

2. Brighton solid and safe: This win means Brighton are all but safe from relegation as they sit nine points above the bottom three with five games to go. Brighton have Man City and Liverpool to play in their next two but Graham Potter’s side have picked up seven points from the first 12 available since the restart and they were solid defensively, kept mistakes to a minimum and were dangerous on the break. Job done for the Seagulls and Potter’s first season in charge has been a big success in terms of staying up (pretty much) and their new style of play.

3. Next two games crucial for Canaries: All is not lost. They have to play relegation rivals Watford and West Ham in their next two games and they just have to win both. They have to. That will be a tall order but if they play the way they did in the first half against Brighton, they can get results. Their final three games of the season are against Burnley, Chelsea and Man City. Time is running out, though, as they try to stop a fifth relegation from the Premier League.

Man of the Match

Tariq Lamptey – The youngster was a January addition from Chelsea and he’s slotted in really well out wide. Lamptey offers an outlet at right back and works hard defensively. Brighton look like they’ve got themselves a bargain.


After a free kick found him at the back post, Aaron Connolly smashed a shot just over the bar as Brighton had the first big chance but Norwich started the better of the two teams.

Onel Hernandez had a shot blocked after cutting inside and the Canaries had plenty of possession as they tried to force the issue in the first half. Hernandez went close again soon after but just after the water break Brighton took the lead against the run of play.

Maupay played in Aaron Mooy down the right as his cross was perfect for the arriving Trossard to steer home and put Brighton 1-0 up.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

In the second half Brighton went close through Connolly as his shot was blocked, while at the other end Emiliano Buendia had his shot blocked by Lewis Dunk.

Norwich huffed and puffed as they tried to get back in the game but despite bringing on Pukki, Cantwell and Adam Idah.

Idah flicked an effort past Mat Ryan in stoppage time but it hit the post and came back out as Farke’s side ran out of ideas and are now surely heading straight back to the Championship.

Norwich – Brighton stream: How to watch, start time, odds, team news

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Norwich – Brighton kicks off the action on Saturday (start time, 7:30am ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com) and this is a huge game in the relegation scrap.

The Canaries simply have to win to have any change of staying up, while Brighton know a win could all but secure safety and give them a nine-point cushion above the bottom three.

NORWICH – BRIGHTON STREAM LIVE

Both teams love to play open, attractive soccer and this should be a very exciting clash, especially as Norwich will be pushing for all three points to try and kick-start their battle against the drop.

Here’s everything you need to know ahead of Norwich – Brighton.

Team news

Norwich make several changes as Daniel Farke continues to search for the right starting lineup. Onel Hernandez comes in, while Timm Klose is back from suspension and both Todd Cantwell and Teemu Pukki drop to the bench.

Brighton start Neal Maupay and Leandro Trossard after they came off the bench against Man United and made a big difference. Aaron Mooy also comes into the starting lineup.

Odds and ends

(+245) Norwich v. Brighton (+120), Tie: +230

No surprise that Norwich are the underdogs given their woeful start to the restart. Brighton are the clear favorites and they would probably take a draw too. Norwich will go all-out for the win and that should make for an interesting spectacle, at least for the neutral.

Prediction

I actually think Norwich could pull this off. They just have to win and if they do then somehow they are just four points off safety with five games to go. They could still stay up and I think they will sneak a 2-1 win.

Solskjaer reveals key to Man United’s unbeaten run, top four push

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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has lauded the togetherness and defensive stability of his Manchester United squad as their win at Brighton continued their push towards Champions League qualification and trophy success in the final weeks of the 2019-20 season.

[ MORE: 3 things we learned ]

Solskjaer and Manchester United are now unbeaten in 15 games in all competitions, recording 11 shutouts in that run, as they’re in the latter stages of the FA Cup and Europa League and are just two points off the top four in the Premier League.

Chelsea and Leicester City can feel Man United breathing down their neck.

Speaking via Zoom after the 3-0 demolition of Brighton, Solskjaer was asked by ProSoccerTalk about their defensive displays and he revealed that is key to making the most of their talented attacking quintet.

“You can see with the quality and talent we’ve got going forward, if we have a foundation to play from with a good shape, with good pressing, press high, and also with a back four which is used to each other, and David made two tremendous saves today. There’s loads of reasons behind the clean sheets but there is always that foundation to any team, you have to have a shape to start from. The intensity from our defensive work was great,” Solskjaer said.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

Bruno Fernandes scored twice, while Mason Greenwood added another as Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford and Paul Pogba all played big roles in the win at Brighton.

Man United have secured back-to-back 3-0 wins in the Premier League and they look like a cohesive, solid unit all over the pitch. Does Solskjaer agree?

“Definitely. We know we are 11 men attacking and 11 men defending,” Solskjaer said. “We defend from the front. Anthony, Bruno, Marcus and Mason today, they pressed Brighton, because we know how difficult it is to face Brighton and we stopped them getting a rhythm and the screen in front of the back four with Paul and Nemanja is quite big to get past as well. Very, very happy with the shape and intensity.”

Solskjaer’s Man United are now just two points off fourth-place Chelsea and three points behind third-place Leicester City and have all of the momentum and a much easier remaining schedule compared with their top four rivals.

Bruno Fernandes stole the headlines with his performance as he’s been involved in seven goals in his first seven Premier League games (five goals, two assists) and he believes they can qualify for the Champions League.

As well as also lauding the defensive displays, Fernandes wanted to make sure the entire Man United squad were praised and not just his growing partnership in midfield with Paul Pogba.

“Of course. Paul is an amazing player but I don’t want to talk too much about me and Paul. It is not fair on the other players and teammates. I think Paul thinks the same way. We are really happy to play together but I am really happy to play with everyone. Paul has such good qualities and we know he is so important for us. We know we can combine together and we have qualities and we can play together,” Fernandes said.

“But also we know we have teammates who can do very well when we are out and when we play with another one. It is not fair for the other guys if you just talk about me and Paul. Fred and Scotty [McTominay] did an amazing job before the stop. Nemanja [Matic] is a guy who is doing it very well, also Andreas [Pereira] and Jesse [Lingard] can play number 10, and Juan [Mata], they have such good qualities and give it a lot for the team. We are a team, we train together, they push me to do better, they push Paul to do better. I push Paul and Paul pushes me. At the end, it is team work.”

As they say, team work makes the dream work. Man United’s form has them dreaming of a Champions League return and winning the FA Cup and Europa League.

Classy Man United breeze past Brighton

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Manchester United hammered Brighton 3-0 at the Amex Stadium on Tuesday, as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side are now unbeaten in 15 games in all competitions.

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Bruno Fernandes struck in each half after Mason Greenwood gave Man United the lead and although Brighton had chances, Solskjaer’s side won comfortably to keep their top four push on track.

With the win Man United move back into fifth place on 52 points, two points behind fourth-place Chelsea and three points behind third-place Leicester City. Brighton remain six points above the relegation zone.


Manchester United – Brighton: Three things we learned

1. Fernandes, Pogba clicking: Twice in the first half Pogba played the ball to Fernandes on the edge of the box. On the first occasion Fernandes hit the post. On the second he scored. This partnership is clicking and they’ve now started alongside one another against Sheffield United and Brighton and they’ve been instrumental. With Greenwood, Rashford and Martial ahead of them, Pogba and Fernandes provide creativity to knit the attacking unit together perfectly. What a partnership they could have as Pogba looks almost back to his best.

2. Man United have momentum for top four: Two wins and a draw since the restart has United right in the top four hunt and they have the easiest remaining schedule, on paper, compared with their Champions League-chasing rivals. Solskjaer’s side are solid defensively, dangerous on the counter and with Fernandes and Pogba in full flow, they can now break down teams who sit back and defend deep against them. Bet on Man United to at least be fifth when the season is over. With 11 clean sheets in their last 15 games in all competitions, Man United have improved massively defensively too.

3. Brighton focus on Norwich: Anything from this game would have been a bonus but it was clear Graham Potter prioritized their trip to last-place Norwich at the weekend. Maupay and Trossard came on at half time and gave the Seagulls extra spark in attack as they were too defensive and lackluster in the first half, while Aaron Mooy was rested too. Brighton have a six-point cushion on the relegation zone and if they beat Norwich at the weekend it would take something very drastic for them to be relegated this season.

Man of the Match

Bruno Fernandes – He scored twice and kept popping up in dangerous areas. Yes, his set piece delivery wasn’t the best but he was still extremely dangerous. Mason Greenwood was sublime with a goal and an assist but Fernandes just shaded the MOM award.


Man United dominated the early stages and came so close to taking the lead as Pogba and Fernandes combined.

Pogba teed up Fernandes who stroked a low effort past Mat Ryan but it hit the post and came back out as Pogba’s rebound was deflected over.

Soon after Man United took a deserved lead as Aaron Wan-Bissaka found Greenwood and the teenager turned superbly, bamboozled the Brighton defense with his quick feet and then snuck home a finish at the near post.

Luke Shaw then surged forward to set up a second as his ball found Pogba and once again he teed up Fernandes perfectly as he snuck home an effort at the near post.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]Β 

Brighton started the second half well with Neal Maupay and Leandro Trossard making a difference off the bench, but they were then hit on the counter as Man United finished them off.

Nemanja Matic spanked a fine ball out to Greenwood who ran forward and clipped an equally lovely cross to the back post which found Fernandes who volleyed home his second and Man United’s third. Ole-ball at its finest.

Brighton continued to pour forward as Alexis Mac Allister found Trossard with a clever short free kick but the Belgian sent his shot across goal just wide. David de Gea denied Maupay as Man United were made to work hard for the clean sheet but they left Brighton with a shutout and all three points.

VIDEO: Greenwood, Fernandes score as Man United dazzle

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Stream Brighton – Manchester United: You will not regret watching this Man United attacking display.

Mason Greenwood and Bruno Fernandes got on the scoresheet in the first half as Manchester United battered Brighton early on at the Amex Stadium.

STREAM BRIGHTON – MANCHESTER UNITED LIVE

Greenwood, 18, cut in from the right and after some fancy footwork he snuck home an effort at the near post for his 13th goal of the season in all competitions.

Paul Pogba then teed up Bruno Fernandes to sweep home a second, as the duo had combined earlier in the half in a near identical situation but Fernandes hit the post on that occasion.

What an attacking lineup this is, as Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford haven’t got in on the act yet. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s Man United continue their superb form as they are 14 games unbeaten in all competitions and full of confidence heading into the business end of the season.

Does a Champions League berth beckon as they close in on Chelsea and Leicester City above them in the Premier League table?

Click on the link above to watch the second half live, while above and below you can watch both goals.