Brighton vs Crystal Palace: Graham Potter plans to adapt style once again for Palace

Brighton and Hove Albion head coach Graham Potter has challenged his squad to adapt to a different threat as Crystal Palace visit the Amex this Saturday.

Tuesday, 25th February 2020, 7:36 pm
Updated Tuesday, 25th February 2020, 7:37 pm
Brighton and Hove Albion head coach changed his approach to gain a point at Sheffield United

Albion changed their style of play to gain a hard-earned point during a 1-1 draw at Sheffield United last Saturday. It was a display built on determination and resolute defending, in contrast to Potter's preferred method of possession based football and playing out from the back.

This Saturday against Palace the onus will be on Brighton to be bold and go for the victory in front of their home support against their long-term rivals. “It will be different against Palace," said Potter whose team are just four points above the relegation zone. "That is the beauty of the Premier League – every challenge is different.

"If we’d come to Sheffield United with 10 more points our plan might have been different. We had to respect the opposition, the environment and how they play and work out the best ways to give ourselves a chance.

"Do the coaching team get some satisfaction that the game plan worked on Saturday? Yes, but I think I have had a decent coaching career so far and you don’t have that by doing the same thing all the time. You have to adapt, and so do the players.

“From a purist’s perspective, I thought we played better against Sheffield United at home but lost 1-0 so this was a good point for us.

The challenge for Potter now is to help his team find the balance between the attractive football they have played previously and combine that with the battling qualities shown at Bramall Lane.

Potter added: “In the game before at West Ham we were 2-0 and 3-1 down and still battled back. The guys are undoubtedly resilient, what we have to find is the balance between that and the better football which I know we can play. If we do that, we will become a good team.”

Alexis Mac Allister, who cut short his loan deal at Boca Juniors and joined on the January transfer deadline day, wasn't included in the match day squad for Sheffield United. The Argentina international will hope to force his way into the team for Palace.

“I didn’t think the introduction of Alexis in that type of game would be a fair thing to do in his first game in English football," said Potter.

“I have been absolutely delighted with what Alexis has shown in the first week he’s been here, but we’ve got a lot of good footballers who think they can play. We have to find the right time for him, but he is going to be a really good addition for us. Everyone has to be ready to play.”