Brighton – match Report vs Leicester 23/06/20

This is a guest piece by Andrew Hunter.

A very even affair with no big chances for either team, apart from a missed Brighton penalty, resulting in a 0-0 stalemate. Both teams cancelled each other out by both lining up in a 4-4-2 formation. The onus was on Leicester to win however they looked toothless in attack, with James Maddison switching from the left wing to the right wing (after being nullified by Lamptey)  and then to attacking midfield but with no avail.

Ratings:

  • A1 – Very good, could play higher
  • A2 – Strong potential to play higher
  • B1 – Good, strong player at level
  • B2 – Potential to be a strong player at level
  • C – Average for their level, re-watch
  • D – Below average in this match

Tariq Lamptey

Player Profile

  • Nationality: English
  • Age: 19
  • Date of Birth: 30/09/2000
  • Current Club: Brighton
  • Career: Chelsea, Brighton
  • Position: Right Back
  • Preferred foot: Right

Standing at just 1.7m tall, Lamptey lacks a physical presence that could be exploited by teams at corners and free kicks, however he dealt with this well in this game – only losing one header to Ben Chilwell from a long diagonal ball. He also took an elbow to the face which looked to end his match, but he battled on and put in a MOTM performance.

From the offset, Lamptey showed great technique when defending a 1v1 situation. He jockeyed well, wasn’t too close or too far away from the ball carrier, and he seized the opportunity to win the ball whether this be a standing tackle or a sliding tackle. His mobility plus his change of speed and direction helped him when dealing with tricky players such as Madison, Chilwell and Demarai Gray as he was able to move his feet quickly to accommodate for the ball carriers good ball control. However, on one occasion Lamptey got on the wrong side of Vardy, mistiming his slide tackle conceding a freekick. More impressively, he learnt from this mistake as in the second half he was isolated 1v1 with Vardy on the left and jockeyed very well, this more pragmatic approach won him the ball back with ease as well as outpacing Vardy on another occasion showing his great recovery pace which is a great asset to have.

Lamptey’s pace was also very effective in attack, he skipped past two Leicester challenges on several occasions, including a nice roulette, showing that he has great dribbling skills as well as his pace. He had great ball control which was helped with his low centre of gravity, he also offered a dangerous overlap throughout the game. However when Lamptey did get to the byline, his end product was poor, with a couple of crosses being either inaccurate or too floated which made it hard for the Brighton strikers to make something out of the cross. Also Lamptey’s passing was sometimes a bit wayward when the pass was a fairly simple one to make.

Overall, his very impressive 1v1 defensive work made it very difficult for Leicester to create any opportunities down his flank and his defensive qualities were great. However, his passing and crossing ability must improve if he is to move to a better club as this is becoming increasingly important for fullbacks to have in their locker.

Rating – A1

Alexis Mac Allister

Player Profile

  • Nationality: Argentinian
  • Age: 21
  • Date of Birth:24/12/1998
  • Current Club: Brighton
  • Career: Argentina Juniors, Brighton, Boca Juniors (L)
  • Position: Left Midfield, Attacking Midfield
  • Preferred foot: Right

Mac Allister started very brightly for the first 20 minutes and everything that Brighton created came through him on the left-hand side of midfield. He took the majority of Brighton’s set pieces and they were all whipped in with good quality and would have created good chances albeit Soyuncu and Evans headed away anything in the six-yard box. His left foot looked equally as strong when crossing on his weaker foot. Mac Allister played as a wide left midfielder in this game in a 4-4-2 formation, however when Brighton were in possession he had a tendency to drift inside to try and get on the ball more and linkup with the two Brighton strikers where I think he could create more chances and opportunities. 

I was also impressed with Mac Alister’s defensive work without the ball, he constantly tracked the opposition fullback, even back to his own goal when necessary. He also forced the Leicester right back to play sidewards back to the centre half rather than down the line due to Mac Allister’s effective screening. Mac Allister also recognised when to press up the pitch, he made several interceptions, tackles and blocks and he didn’t lack any physicality when getting stuck into challenges.

Mac Allister was withdrawn on the hour mark after struggling to get on the ball in the second half, it would be interesting to see him play in a midfield three or as a number 10 in a 4-2-3-1. Overall, his first start in English football was impressive and promising, hopefully he becomes a regular starter as he showed glimpses of a very good player. 

Rating – B2

Aaron Connolly

Player Profile

  • Nationality: Irish
  • Age: 20
  • Date of Birth:28/01/2000
  • Current Club: Brighton
  • Career: Mervue United (Y), Brighton, Luton (L)
  • Position: Centre Forward
  • Preferred foot: Right

Connolly put in an all-round striker’s performance today and he was most effective when making runs in behind the slow Leicester defence, however he was not limited to this. He showcased good hold up play when he decided to come short, often winning a freekick when there was no option to release the ball to a teammate. Moreover, he had a good connection with his strike partner Maupay and linked up with him a couple of times playing a neat first-time pass to him as well as going long when Maupay went short and vice versa.

As well as dropping into space, Connolly made lots of runs into the channels between the full-back and centre-back and he also made runs in between the two centre-backs, whenever he did this there was always a sense of panic around the Leicester back four as Connolly’s persistent pressing and energy gave no time for the defenders to have time on the ball or pick out an accurate pass, this was shown when he cleverly nicked the ball off James Justin when chasing a hopeless long ball which resulted in a Brighton attack. Connolly also made an impressive dribble forcing the Leicester defence to run towards their own goal, eventually getting a shot off and winning a corner. Connolly’s performance was epitomised when he used his pace, strength and tenacity to win a penalty; he made a good run in behind but failed to control the ball however he never gave up and ended up winning the ball back using good upper body strength and was brought down in the box.

Overall, Connolly showed a range of attributes he can bring to the team and can adjust his style of play depending on the opposition. His link up play, hold up play, runs in behind were all used to good effect and he was a useful outlet at all times.

Rating – B1

Yves Bissouma

Player Profile

  • Nationality: Malian
  • Age: 23
  • Date of Birth:30/08/1996
  • Current Club: Brighton
  • Career: AS Real Bamako, Lille, Brighton
  • Position: Centre Midfield
  • Preferred foot: Right

Bissouma didn’t have much to do in this game but what he did do was very effective. His most impressive aspect of his game was the ability to track runners whilst simultaneously blocking off the pass to that player, making several key interceptions that would have led to Leicester chances. He was positioned as the left centre midfielder, however he also covered a lot of ground on the right-hand side of the pitch. Bissouma was very competent at heading the ball and in the challenge, including one good tackle in the penalty box on the tricky James Maddison. Furthermore, he made a clever sliding interception from a low ground cross that would have found a Leicester attacker if it wasn’t for him.

Overall, Bissouma’s defensive work goes largely unnoticed despite its importance, his passing ability and attacking performance was very limited however this may have been down to the overall game state rather than his actual ability. I think he would be even better as the holding player in a midfield three rather than in a midfield two; either way he is a very competent player at this level.

Rating – B1

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