Crystal Palace host Brighton & Hove Albion on Monday night in the 2021/22 Premier League season’s first M23 derby.
The Eagles have made a mixed start to life under Patrick Vieira, suffering a couple of heavy defeats, while also dishing out a 3-0 spanking of their own against Tottenham Hotspur. The Seagulls, meanwhile, are soaring this year, having won four of their opening five matches.
Brighton are in great form / Henry Browne/Getty Images
The two sides will be desperate to hold the initial bragging rights in this fiercely-contested derby, although the hosts are in greater need of a securing three points than Graham Potter’s all-conquering Brighton.
Here’s 90min’s preview of Monday’s big matchup.
When is it being played? Monday 27 September, 20:00 (BST) Where is the match being played? Selhurst Park TV channel? Sky Sports Main Event (UK), fuboTV (US), DAZN (Canada) Referee? Andre Marriner VAR? Chris Kavanagh
In contention for a start / Sebastian Frej/MB Media/Getty Images
The big decision for Vieira is whether to hand summer signing Odsonne Edouard a start against the Seagulls. The Frenchman came on as a substitute to score twice against Spurs in the 3-0 win, but found himself on the bench once again in the defeat to Liverpool.
Vieira could opt to hand him his full debut ahead of Christian Benteke on Monday. Eberechi Eze is still out of contention, but Jeffrey Schlupp may well feature. Loanee Conor Gallagher will be crucial in the midfield, while Wilfried Zaha revels in playing Brighton.
Maupay should retain his place up top / Robin Jones/Getty Images
Potter has significant injury concerns to contend, with midfield talisman Yves Bissouma facing a race against time to return to full fitness. He suffered a knock during the win over Leicester City but is in the squad to face Palace.
Fellow midfielder Enock Mwepu suffered an injury of his own in the midweek Carabao Cup victory, but like Bissouma, should be good to go. Tariq Lamptey played in midweek, but may need more time to get up to speed.
This derby often proves a fair fight between two evenly matched sides, and it’s not easy to separate the pair. In fact, only one game has been won by more than a one-goal margin in the past nine meetings, when Brighton ran out victorious with a 3-1 scoreline in 2018.
Palace won the most recent encounter thanks to Christian Benteke’s injury-time strike, and Brighton’s last success in this fixture came back in 2019 – when Anthony Knockhaert became the hero. The Seagulls did the double over the Eagles that year, and they’ll be hoping to kick off their rivalry in similar fashion this time round.
Zaha is Palace’s key man / Visionhaus/Getty Images
Both sides will be pumped and ready to go.
Palace need to start getting consistent points on the board, while Potter won’t want Brighton to come crashing down from the wave they’re currently riding – particularly against the Eagles.
The Selhurst Park faithful will generate a raucous atmosphere, adding bite and needle to a game that needs little invitation to get spicy. Who wins? Hard to call, but you can’t bet against Albion in the form they’re in – particularly as they can go top of the table with three points.
After a brief pause for some Carabao Cup ‘fun’, the Premier League has returned – and boy have we had some cracking games already.
Title contenders Chelsea and Manchester City had the chance to send a message to the rest of the league when they met early on Saturday, and it was the latter who did just that with a narrow win at Stamford Bridge.
There were also impressive wins for Aston Villa, West Ham and Everton, while Brentford held Liverpool to a thrilling 3-3 draw. Leicester, Burnley, Watford and Newcastle also shared the spoils in their respective games.
Sunday offers up a north London derby between Arsenal and Tottenham, before the action is rounded off by bitter rivals Crystal Palace and Brighton on Monday night – which should be played out in front of a raucous Selhurst Park crowd.
Gabriel Jesus netted the game’s only goal / Shaun Botterill/Getty Images
Manchester City made their title intentions known as they walked all over Chelsea en route to a comfortable 1-0 victory.
Pep Guardiola’s men dominated the game from start to finish and could have easily had a few goals, but they had to settle for Gabriel Jesus’ scrappy strike early in the second half to deliver all the points.
Chelsea did not even manage a shot on target and lost Reece James to an ankle injury early in the second half. A bad day at the office.
Read the player ratings for Chelsea vs Man City here.
Bruno Fernandes missed a penalty / Gareth Copley/Getty Images
Manchester United had plenty of shots on goal but could not find a way through Aston Villa, who snatched the victory late in the day thanks to a strike from Kourtney Hause.
Hause’s goal wasn’t the end of the fun, however, as United were awarded a late penalty which was surprisingly taken by Bruno Fernandes, who fought off Cristiano Ronaldo to keep his place as the team’s first-choice taker.
The result? He skied it over the bar. Awkward.
Read the player ratings from Man Utd vs Aston Villa here.
Abdoulaye Doucoure wrapped up Everton’s win over Norwich / Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images
Everton put a difficult week behind them with a 2-0 win over Norwich, who are now rooted to the bottom of the table with six defeats out of six.
The victory ensures the Toffees’ 100% home record this season remains intact, and was handed to them by a first-half penalty from Andros Townsend and a second half goal from Abdoulaye Doucoure.
The hosts were good value for their win, but Daniel Farke is still scratching his head and wondering how he’ll bring to an end a streak of 16 successive Premier League defeats.
Read the player ratings from Everton vs Norwich here.
Michail Antonio won the game late on for West Ham / Stu Forster/Getty Images
West Ham fought back from a goal down to beat Leeds 2-1 at Elland Road, courtesy of a dramatic late winner from Michail Antonio.
The home side had taken the lead through Raphinha, who punished a costly Tomas Soucek error with a terrific low drive into the corner.
But David Moyes’ Hammers were the better team for much of the game, and despite Illan Meslier making a string of saves, got back on terms via a deflected Jarrod Bowen effort. They then sealed the points at the death, with Antonio superbly taking Declan Rice’s pass into his stride before coolly skipping through on goal to score.
Read the player ratings from Leeds vs West Ham here.
It was quite the afternoon for Jamie Vardy / Visionhaus/Getty Images
Jamie Vardy had an eventful day to say the least at King Power Stadium – scoring twice as well as netting an own goal in a 2-2 draw with Burnley, who had a Chris Wood winner ruled out for offside in added time.
Vardy opened the scoring at the wrong end, glancing home a Burnley corner, before he atoned from his mistake with a typical run in behind and low finish.
The Clarets pulled ahead again soon after through a superb Maxwel Cornet effort, but Vardy was again on hand to level in the second half – rounding Nick Pope before slotting home from an acute angle. Wood thought he’d won it for the visitors, only to see the flag go up and deny Sean Dyche’s side their first three points of the season.
Read the player ratings from Leicester vs Burnley here.
Ben Foster was a relieved man as Ismaila Sarr rescued a point / Alex Morton/Getty Images
Watford and Newcastle played out an entertaining 1-1 draw at Vicarage Road, which saw another late winner ruled out for offside.
The visitors were hot out of the blocks and took the lead through a blockbusting Sean Longstaff effort – although having watched the replay, goalkeeper Ben Foster will be bitterly disappointed that he didn’t shovel his powerful drive around the post.
Ismaila Sarr responded for Watford with less than 20 minutes remaining, continuing his hot streak of form with a firm header at the back post, before Josh King thought he’d won it with his first goal for the club – only to see his effort ruled out for offside.
Read the player ratings from Watford vs Newcastle here.
Brentford showed what they can do against Liverpool / GLYN KIRK/Getty Images
Brentford continued their sensational start to the season as they twice came from behind to a earn 3-3 draw with leaders Liverpool.
Thomas Frank promised prior to kick off that his team would attack Liverpool, and so it proved as they took the game to Jurgen Klopp’s side, They were rewarded with the game’s opening goal, tapped in at the back post by Ethan Pinnock after good work from Sergi Canos and Ivan Toney.
Diogo Jota levelled soon after for the Reds, and they hit the front nine minutes into the second half through Mohamed Salah – his 100th Premier League goal for the club. Vitaly Janelt got Brentford swiftly back on terms but they were soon behind again, this time after a wonderful finish from Curtis Jones.
But a well-deserved point was claimed eight minutes from time, as Yoane Wissa climbed off the bench to coolly dink over Alisson in front of a boisterous full house.
Read the player ratings from Brentford vs Liverpool here.
Southampton entertain Wolves on the south coast / Matthew Ashton – AMA/David Rogers/Getty Images
When is it being played? Sunday 26 September, 14:00 (BST) Where is the match being played? St Mary’s Stadium TV channel? BT Sport 1 (UK), Peacock Premium (US), DAZN (Canada) Highlights? BT Sport YouTube Channel (UK), Match of the Day 2 (BBC – UK) Referee? Andy Madley VAR? Paul Tierney
15th will host 16th when Wolves make the trip to the south coast to meet Southampton in Sunday’s opener.
Despite being higher up in the table, Southampton are still searching for their first win of the campaign and are on a run of four straight draws, the last two of which have both been 0-0.
Wolves, on the other hand, have lost four of their opening five games but have at least picked up three points. With both sides struggling, expect the spoils to be shared.
Prediction: Southampton 1-1 Wolves
A huge north London derby main events Sunday’s action / Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Chloe Knott – Danehouse/Getty Images
When is it being played? Sunday 26 September, 16:30 (BST) Where is the match being played? Emirates Stadium What TV channel is it on? Sky Sports Main Event (UK), fuboTV (US), DAZN (Canada) Highlights? Sky Sports YouTube Channel (UK), Match of the Day 2 (BBC – UK) Referee? Craig Pawson VAR? Stuart Attwell
It’s derby season as Arsenal and Tottenham continue their legendary rivalry in Sunday’s headline game.
Both sides are in pretty uninspiring form, but form almost always goes out of the window in north London derbies and these two are about as tricky to predict as any side you’ll find across Europe.
These derbies always produce goals, controversy and a boatload of drama, and we wouldn’t have it any other way.
Read 90min’s preview of the game here.
Prediction: Arsenal 2-2 Tottenham
Week six ends with a clash between rivals Palace and Brighton / Paul Ellis/AFP/Tony Marshall/Getty Images
When is it being played? Monday 27 September, 20:00 (BST) Where is the match being played? Selhurst Park What TV channel is it on? Sky Sports Main Event (UK), fuboTV (US), DAZN (Canada) Highlights? Sky Sports YouTube Channel (UK) Referee? Andre Marriner VAR? Chris Kavanagh
High-flying Brighton go in search of their fifth win of the campaign when they head to Selhurst Park to meet Patrick Vieira’s Crystal Palace.
Graham Potter’s men have exceeded expectations so far this year, picking up four wins from five games, and they’ll fancy their chances of adding three more points against a Palace side who haven’t figured themselves out thus far.
Memories of their 3-0 win over Spurs were abruptly dismissed when Palace fell 3-0 to Liverpool last time out. There might not be as many goals in this one, but the visitors may edge a cagey affair.
Prediction: Crystal Palace 1-2 Brighton
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Emiliano Martinez is earning quite the reputation as a bit of a s**thouse between the sticks for both club and country.
The 29-year-old kept a clean sheet at Old Trafford on Saturday afternoon, playing a key role in Aston Villa’s shock 1-0 victory over Manchester United. He made some smart stops throughout the 90 minutes, but perhaps his biggest contribution came in injury time, without even making a save.
The Red Devils were awarded the chance to equalise in the dying minutes through a penalty, cancelling out what many had assumed was Kortney Hause’s winning goal. Bruno Fernandes picked up the ball ahead of expected taker Cristiano Ronaldo, and Martinez saw it as the perfect opportunity to whack out the mind games.
The Villa shot-stopper began shouting at Ronaldo, telling him: “You take it, you take it!” His antics delayed Fernandes’ match-deciding spot-kick, much to the annoyance of United’s players, and seemingly rattled the Portuguese midfielder.
Fernandes, who boasts an almost perfect penalty record, was perhaps unnerved by Martinez’s demands for Ronaldo to strike the penalty – though Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will tell you otherwise – and uncharacteristically blasted his effort miles over the crossbar.
It was a moment that stunned the Old Trafford crowd, but their anguish didn’t stop there.
Martinez, delighted with his ploy to psyche out the usually reliable Fernandes, decided it was wise to then dance in front of the Stretford End, performing a little antagonising jig to wind up the Manchester United support even more.
Villa held on to their 1-0 lead to secure a famous win at Old Trafford, and owe plenty of it to their super goalkeeper.
Martinez, for the record, has previous for these kinds of antics, too.
Martinez has previously put off Yerry Mina / NELSON ALMEIDA/Getty Images
He was integral on Argentina’s path to Copa America glory this summer, telling Colombia penalty taker Yerry Mina: “You’re nervous, eh? I can tell you’re nervous. I know where you’re going to shoot. Watch and see how I’m gonna eat you up.”
Argentina went on to win the shootout, and ended up lifting the trophy thanks to more of his heroics in the final.
Brentford certainly lived up to their manager’s pre-match promise to ‘attack’ Liverpool, as they battled to a helter-skelter 3-3 draw on a thunderous Saturday evening at the Brentford Community Stadium.
In a thrilling contest, two goal-line clearances in the opening ten minutes were a sign of what was to come in west London.
Despite Liverpool’s dominance of possession, Brentford struck first in the 27th minute, catching their visitors out with a devilish set piece routine that Ethan Pinnock tapped in.
Within five minutes, Diogo Jota nodded Liverpool level as Salah and Jordan Henderson exploited Brentford’s flagging goalscorer struggling with a clear injury that would force him off.
Liverpool’s superior individual quality edged them ahead after the break. Fabinho mercilessly exploited the first hint of space Brentford afforded him on the edge of the box, floating a devastating pass over Brentford’s back line for Salah to coolly volley in his 100th Premier League goal for Liverpool, awarded after a VAR review.
Flooding players forward throughout the match, Brentford’s Vitaly Janelt eventually forced the ball over the line shortly after the hour-mark. Curtis Jones ensured the hosts’ joy was short-lived, thundering a long-range effort, with the help of a deflection, past Raya to make it 3-2.
But Brentford would not be muzzled. Second half substitute Yoane Wissa showed ice cold composure to dink an 82nd minute equaliser over the sprawling Alisson to earn the Bees’ first draw against Liverpool since 1947.
Ethan Pinnock celebrates his first Premier League goal four and a half years since finding the net against non-league Bromley / Clive Rose/Getty Images
David Raya (GK) – 8/10 – Helpless for Liverpool’s goals, the razor sharp Raya did deny Jota from point-blank range when the score was level. Kristoffer Ajer (CB) – 7/10 – Brentford’s record signing recovered remarkably quickly from a nasty clash with Jones to deny Salah in the opening exchanges.
Pontus Jansson (CB) – 6/10 – Involved in both of Brentford’s goals, the Bees’ captain had a more significant impact in Liverpool’s box than his own.
Ethan Pinnock (CB) – 6/10 – From ecstasy to agony. In the same half he scored his first Premier League goal, the former non-league stalwart was eventually forced off with injury before half-time.
Christian Norgaard tangles with Liverpool’s Sadio Mane on Saturday evening / James Williamson – AMA/Getty Images
Sergi Canos (RWB) – 6/10 – Against his former side – who afforded him less than ten minutes of first team football back in 2016 – Canos played the ball across for Pinnock’s opener but struggled elsewhere.
Frank Onyeka (CM) – 6/10 – Offering an attacking threat with bursts into the opposition box, Onyeka spooned an effort over the bar early in the game.
Christian Norgaard (CM) – 6/10 – The man touted as Fabinho’s equal by his manager was always keen to accept the ball under pressure despite mixed results Liverpool’s fierce pressure.
Vitaly Janelt (CM) – 7/10 – With the German national team manager, Hansi Flick, among the crowd Janelt picked the perfect time to score his first Premier League goal.
Rico Henry (LWB) – 5/10 – Tearing up and down the left flank, Henry left his teammates exposed for Liverpool’s first two goals.
Bryan Mbeumo watches on in vain as his dink over Alisson was cleared off the line by Joel Matip / Clive Rose/Getty Images
Bryan Mbeumo (ST) – 6/10 – Acting as the energetic, buzzing foil for his strike partner, Mbeumo will be ruing the lack of pace on his first half effort.
Ivan Toney (ST) – 8/10 – As a boyhood Liverpool fan, there was no flicker of awe in a typically robust but dexterous display.
Mathias Jorgensen (CB) – 4/10 – Caught napping as Salah tiptoed behind him for Liverpool’s second.
Shandon Baptiste (CM) – N/A
Yoane Wissa (FW) – 8/10 – Among the ferocious intensity of this fevered fight, the late sub showed a level of cool in stark contrast to his surroundings.
Alisson (GK) – 5/10 – Helpless for Pinnock’s tap in, but hesitant when crosses tossed in from Brentford’s invariably threatening dead balls.
Trent Alexander-Arnold (RB) – 5/10 – By his incredibly lofty standards, endured one his quieter nights creatively and left brutally outnumbered for Brentford’s equalisers.
Joel Matip (CB) – 5/10 – On his 100th Premier League appearance for the club, Matip kept Liverpool level early on but struggled against Toney.
Virgil van Dijk (CB) – 6/10 – At times the unflappable ‘Superman’ looked actually flustered by Brentford’s varied and often direct approach.
Andy Robertson (LB) – 5/10 – Much like his opposite full back, didn’t threaten anywhere near as much going forward.
Curtis Jones was quick into the tackle against Brentford / GLYN KIRK/Getty Images
Jordan Henderson (CM) – 7/10 – Bounding forward frequently, Liverpool’s captain arced in the delivery for Jota to level.
Fabinho (CM) – 6/10 – Having initially struggled to exert his air of influence on proceedings, Fabinho’s guile was on full display for Salah’s goal yet failed to stem the tide coming the other way.
Curtis Jones (CM) – 7/10 – On his first Premier League start of the season, Jones left the field with Liverpool ahead thanks to his thunderous effort to watch the ensuing mayhem from the bench.
Mohamed Salah (RW) – 8/10 – In a club which can boast the likes of Roger Hunt, Ian Rush and Kenny Dalglish among their cadre of legends – to name but three – Salah’s status as the fastest to 100 league goals (just 151 games) is all the more astounding.
Diogo Jota (ST) – 6/10 – Crisply converted his fifth Premier League header for Liverpool but was left flabbergasted by Raya’s reflexes.
Sadio Mane (LW) – 7/10 – Drifting centrally Mane, rather than wilt, appeared to seek out the physical approach Brentford’s back-three – ‘the tallest in Europe’ according to Klopp – employed.
Roberto Firmino was denied late on / Clive Rose/Getty Images
Roberto Firmino (ST) – 6/10 – Could, and perhaps should, have scored late on, but Raya’s reflexes kept him out from close range.
That first loss of the season, which inevitably tastes bitter when you’ve had a good start. But it’s borderline unpalatable when it arrives in the manner that Manchester United’s first loss did against Aston Villa.
A lively first half showed signs of promise, and despite not scoring, United were playing some good football when it came to the business end of the field. Bruno Fernandes was dictating play like a masterful conductor in front of his orchestra, while Mason Greenwood was dazzling Old Trafford with his sharp, effective, and scarily direct play.
But then the second half came. Surrounding the odd moment of flair and brightness was a seas of mediocrity and flat end product – even with the great Cristiano Ronaldo leading the line.
The Red Devils were made to pay late on as Douglas Luiz’s whipped corner was headed in brilliantly by centre-back Kourtney Hause who, particularly noted by the Villa faithful, had enjoyed a brilliant afternoon.
Cue the necessary pun…
That beaming joy was quickly scrapped, however, when Mike Dean awarded Manchester United with a last minute penalty; what was that, Ole?
None other than Villa’s hero of the hour Hause had handled a cross and given the Red Devils the opportunity to earn a point. After some debate, Fernandes stepped up and, well, you probably know the rest…
The man who had his heart in his mouth was visibly thrilled after realising his header would, in fact, be the decisive moment to inflict a first Premier League defeat of the season on United.
Although we enjoyed Emi Martinez’s reaction even more. Groovy.
And once the final whistle was blown, criticism was thrown at various angles – to Fernandes for not letting Ronaldo taking the penalty and, unsurprisingly, to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer following another lacklustre performance.
After a third defeat on four games, many United fans are making their feelings clear.