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Match Previews

PREVIEW | Exiles aiming for Emirates FA Cup upset against Brighton & Hove Albion

10 January 2021

Match Previews

PREVIEW | Exiles aiming for Emirates FA Cup upset against Brighton & Hove Albion

10 January 2021

Newport County AFC welcome Brighton & Hove Albion to Rodney Parade for their Emirates FA Cup third round tie on Sunday evening.

After the Sky Bet League Two fixtures against Exeter City and Southend United were both postponed, this will be the Exiles’ first game of the new year in a competition where they have enjoyed plenty of success in recent seasons.

Premier League opposition will provide a tough challenge for County, but Michael Flynn's men have chalked up a list of cup scalps with victories over Leeds United, Leicester City and Middlesbrough. 

Here, you can find all the facts and statistics ahead of this Emirates FA Cup tie...

The opposition - Brighton & Hove Albion

Brighton’s season so far has not brought the results that their performances may have deserved. The south coast outfit currently sit in 17th place in the Premier League table with 14 points from 17 games.

Albion’s two league wins this season came against Newcastle and Aston Villa, but they remain winless in their last eight league games with five draws. They have shown fight of late, recovering from 3-1 down to secure a draw with Wolves in their most recent outing.

Brighton also reached the fourth round of the Carabao Cup this season after securing victories over Portsmouth and Preston North End, before falling to defeat against Manchester United.

Team news

County’s squad will have a new look to it on this matchday with incomings and outgoings in the new year. Aaron Lewis, Bradley Webb, Brandon Cooper, Saikou Janneh, and Scott Twine have all returned to their parent clubs, while Jack Evans and Jake Scrimshaw and striker Owen Windsor have all joined on loan.

The Exiles also have captain Joss Labadie, Kyle Howkins and Ryan Taylor all fit after spells on the sidelines.

Brighton could have a debutant on Sunday in the form of Percy Tau, two-and-a-half years after joining the club. The forward has finally secured a work permit, allowing him to be selected in the matchday squad.

Tariq Lamptey, Danny Welbeck and Aaron Connolly are all set to miss out on Sunday evening, while Adam Lallana is ill and also unlikely to recover in time.

One to watch – Ben White

Ben White is a face that will be very familiar to the Newport County AFC faithful after his loan spell with the club in the 2017/18 campaign. White has since won the Championship with Leeds United, before establishing himself as a regular in Brighton's starting line-up.

The 23-year-old has made 17 appearances for the Seagulls this season in all competitions, in a mixture of defensive and midfield roles. White has also become one of the first names on the team sheet since his loan spell with Leeds, where he was named in the Championship Team of the Season.

During White’s stint at Rodney Parade, the Englishman was part of the team that defeated Leeds and drew with Spurs in the Emirates FA Cup. He was also described as "the best loan signing the club has ever made" by manager Michael Flynn.

Manager – Graham Potter

Graham Potter has been in charge at the Amex since the beginning of the 2019/20 season, when he replaced Chris Hughton. In his first season, Potter guided the Seagulls to 15th place with a record Premier League points tally, in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.

The Englishman joined Brighton from Swansea City, where he was in charge for one season. In this solitary season, Potter oversaw the Swans to 10th place in the Sky Bet Championship before Albion came calling.

The 45-year-old began his managerial career with Swedish side Östersund, where he took the club from the fourth division to the top flight. Östersund reached the Europa League under Potter’s management and secured a victory over Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium in the round of 32 stage.

Last meeting between the sides

County and Brighton shared a memorable evening the last time the two sides met in the first round of the Carabao Cup in 2013. The Exiles, in their first season back in the Football League, recorded a shock win against the then-Championship side at the Amex Stadium.

The Seagulls went ahead early through an Ashley Barnes strike, before they were reduced to 10 men in the second half. County capitalised on the numerical advantage and sent the game to extra-time courtesy of a Danny Crow header.

Crow put then County ahead in extra-time with his second, before Conor Washington made sure the result was secure to earn a famous victory for the late Justin Edinburgh’s side.

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