Here's five takeaways from the Norwich vs Brighton game

Last-ditch defending, frustrating finishing, underlying data and a spot in a Champions League position - here's what we can takeaway from Albion's game against Norwich

Tuesday, 19th October 2021, 9:35 am
Lewis Dunk was awarded man-off-the-match by data experts WhoScored.com

Here's a look at five talking points from Brighton's 0-0 draw with Norwich at Carrow Road on Saturday (October 16).

Albion will be feeling frustrated at not taking all three points against the Premier League's bottom team.

Expectations before the game were Brighton should stroll to victory, but they'll be thankful they walked away with a point in the end.

Norwich threatened and could have easily won if it wasn't for some poor finishing and heroic last ditch defending from Albion.

So what can we takeaway from the game?

Formidable defence

Every top team is based upon a solid centre-back pairing - in this case, trio. Shane Duffy, Lewis Dunk, Dan Burn take a bow.

Lewis Dunk walked out as data experts WhoScored,com's man-of-the-match with a 7.8 out of 10 star rating.

Shane Duffy got a 7.3 out of 10 star rating, making a clearance off the line to stop Josh Sargent's tame effort going in.

And the flying Dan Burn made two excellent last ditch tackles to stop certain goals for The Canaries.

These three giants and Robert Sanchez are possibly the best defensive unit outside of the top six. I'd even argue they're better than Manchester United's and Spurs' defence.

To not lose is important

By not losing Albion have managed to stay in the top four. Simple as that.

Manchester United leaked goals against Leicester. Everton were punished by West Ham. But Albion stood firm in the face of adversity and didn't falter against Norwich.

A sign of any decent team looking to progress is to take something even when it's not your day.

Maybe two seasons ago Albion would have lost focus and started to drop their heads, but Graham Potter has moulded a team that digs in, works for each other and grinds out results.

But... Albion should be beating teams like Norwich

Norwich were not in good form going into this game. They already look destined for the drop, and for Albion to not punish them seems like a missed opportunity.

If Brighton have serious plans to break into the top 10, then beating teams like Norwich is a must.

Goal scoring concerns continue

I think it's a big ask to expect Neal Maupay to score all of Brighton's goals. But as it stands at the minute, that's the reality.

With Danny Welbeck injured and Aaron Connolly not really kicking on since he burst on to the scene, it's down to Maupay to bang them in... but the goals have dried up in the last couple of games.

Maupay did miss a sitter but only after running around for 80+ minutes putting in a shift for his team as a lone striker.

I think it's slightly harsh and too easy to lay the blame on him. He needs another strike partner, in my opinion.

A clinical striker is needed to compliment Albion's formidable defence

It's possibly the one thing I would question about the Potter/Bloom partnership so far over the last three years. Why hasn't there been more activity in bringing in a striker?

xG

Brighton seriously underperformed in terms of xG last year, so much so that if they had put their chances away they would have finished in sixth place, according to data experts.

However, Brighton are currently over-performing their expected points tally by four, with the data suggesting Albion should be in ninth on 11 points - but in reality they are fourth with 15 points.

The data is usually accurate and as good as it is now, the underlying numbers suggest Albion may drop off a tad. But let's enjoy the Champions League spots for the time being.