Fewer touches, less passes, more tackles - how do Brighton & Hove Albion's stats this year compare to last season?

Shane Duffy wins a header against West Ham. Picture by PW Sporting Photography
Shane Duffy wins a header against West Ham. Picture by PW Sporting Photography

Brighton sit 13th in the Premier League this season after eight games, having finished 15th in their first campaign back in the English top flight last year.

Much was made earlier in the season of how Albion appeared to be pressing higher up the pitch but what do the stats show? Has much changed in the way Brighton play?

One thing that has to be taken into consideration when looking at the stats so far is the Seagulls have played the top-four from last season already this year, which means they have had less of the ball.

That reflects in the amount of touches Albion have had in each match, with an average of 501 a game - 18th overall in the division - compared to an average of 570 last year.

Left-back Gaetan Bong has had the most touches per game on average, with 48,5, just ahead of Anthony Knockaert (46.8) and Shane Duffy (46.3).

Those stats are lower than last year, when Dale Stephens averaged 60.7 touches per game, Lewis Dunk had 55.2 and Duffy 52.9.

Brighton have also made less passes on average in their opening eight games this season, with 319 a match, more than only Cardiff and Newcastle, compared to 386 last year.

Stephens, who has missed Albion's last two matches, averages 43.3 passes a game in his six matches, with Duffy (32.5) and goalkeeper Mathew Ryan (28.8) the next highest.

That is also lower than last season when Stephens averaged 48.8, Dunk 39.3 and Davy Propper 39.6.

The Seagulls are making more tackles, 18 on average a game this campaign, to 16 last season but they are making fewer clearances - 28.5 last year a game on average compared to 22.5 this year.

Duffy made 327 clearances last year - the most in the Premier League - at an average of 8.8 a game. That's down to 5.5 a match this season. Dunk has gone from 5.8 clearances a match to 3.8, while Bong's stats remain similar with 2.8 becoming 2.75.

The amount of shots Albion have had is also slightly down, although it will be interesting to see whether some of these stats climb when the Seagulls play more of the sides in and around them in the table.

Brighton are averaging eight shots a game this year, compared to ten last season.

The Seagulls have been dispossessed 9.75 times a game on average this year, while it was 7.78 times last year - the lowest in the top flight.

Albion have been caught offside the most in the Premier League so far this season - 21 times at an average of 2.6 times a game. Last year they were caught offside the third most in the top flight, 98 times, at 2.5 times a match.

Ryan has made 3.75 saves a game this year, compared to 3.26 saves per match last year.

The Seagulls have picked up 18 yellow cards so far, on average 2.25 a game, compared to 54 and an average of 1.42 last year.

HAVE YOU READ?

'The proudest moment of my career' - Brighton & Hove Albion defender Lewis Dunk on his England call-up

Former Brighton & Hove Albion striker is the top scorer in Europe this season

Chelsea star tops individual performance stats this season, while Brighton & Hove Albion player is among the top 50