Graham Potter’s optimistic Brighton assessment & why Man Utd should be wary ahead of opening fixture

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The Seagulls manager has highlighted his side are capable of beating anyone, ahead of the clash with Manchester United on Sunday.

Graham Potter has said he is delighted with Brighton & Hove Albion’s pre-season preparations ahead of the start of the 2022/23 Premier League campaign, which begins with a trip to Manchester United on Sunday.

The Seagulls ended last term in ninth, just three places and seven points worse off than the Red Devils.

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They also inflicted one of United’s worst defeats of the season, when the Seagulls won 4-0 at the Amex in May.

Brighton beat United 4-0 the last time the teams met. Credit: Getty.Brighton beat United 4-0 the last time the teams met. Credit: Getty.
Brighton beat United 4-0 the last time the teams met. Credit: Getty. | AFP via Getty Images

Potter is hoping for a similarly positive outcome this campaign, and is pleased following a pre-season that saw Brighton win three of their five friendlies, culminating with a 5-1 victory over Spain side Espanyol.

Speaking after the game, Potter revealed he feels his side are in good shape heading into the new term.

“I’m happy as I can be with this pre-season,” he told the Athletic. “In terms of how we are performing, how we are acting every day and in games.

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Brighton ended pre-season with a 5-1 win over Espanyol. Credit: Getty.Brighton ended pre-season with a 5-1 win over Espanyol. Credit: Getty.
Brighton ended pre-season with a 5-1 win over Espanyol. Credit: Getty. | Getty Images

“We had a tricky game against Estoril [on 16 July] on not the greatest pitch in the world and not the most awe-inspiring environment, but the attitude was spot on from the players.

“It’s good when you have that, the humility to just get on with your work, do their best, push each other and work for each other.”

Potter is preparing for his fourth year in charge of the south-coast club, and has helped establish the team as a solid mid-tabled outfit.

Last season, Brighton also developed a penchant for beating the top sides in the country and, as well as hammering United, defeated Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal, and took points off Liverpool and Chelsea.

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It’s for that reason Potter is not concerned about the task of facing United this weekend, even if it is Erik ten Hag’s first game in charge of the 20-time English champions.

“Like anything in the Premier League, there are no easy ones,” said the 47-year-old. “You’ve got to be ready to compete and to try and get points against anybody.

“We’ve proved that but, still, I don’t take any game for granted and no game should be totally out of our reach. We just need to focus on us, preparing as well as we can, and then we’ll see.”

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