Bournemouth v Brighton FA Cup. The predictions and the psychology

Yet another South Coast Derby – well not really a derby but as with Southampton fans, these teams can all remember the days when all three teams were in the lower leagues looking up at the big boys.  Now all three are up there, and it is just Portsmouth on the south coast who can look on in annoyance, as their day has been and gone.

Portsmouth have won the cup twice, most recently in 2008, and actually made the final again two years later, Brighton have made the final once, while Southampton have won it once (in 1976) and been runners’ up twice.

Thus there is a bit of experience there – but not that much.

So to Bournemouth and Brighton.

Bournemouth have the home advantage and they have made use of it with five wins and three draws out of eight.  19 scored and 17 conceded in 11 games which on its own suggests a 1-1 draw.

Team P W D L F A GD Pts
1 Manchester City 11 10 0 1 37 10 27 30
2 Liverpool 10 9 1 0 27 3 24 28
3 Arsenal 11 8 2 1 24 10 14 26
4 Chelsea 11 6 4 1 19 8 11 22
5 Manchester United 10 6 3 1 21 13 8 21
6 Tottenham Hotspur 9 6 0 3 18 9 9 18
7 Brighton and Hove 10 5 3 2 15 11 4 18
8 AFC Bournemouth 11 5 3 3 19 17 2 18

Brighton are in the lower reaches of the away league table

15 Brighton and Hove 11 2 2 7 9 18 -9 8
16 Southampton 11 2 2 7 10 21 -11 8
17 Burnley 11 2 2 7 9 22 -13 8
18 Cardiff City 10 1 2 7 6 18 -12 5
19 Huddersfield Town 10 1 2 7 8 21 -13 5
20 Fulham 11 0 2 9 7 28 -21 2

Two wins, two draws and seven defeats from Brighton away, only nine scored in 11 games and 18 against does not make healthy reading.

The Psychological Effect

Combining the tables of home and away results Brighton are 13th and Bournemouth 12th, and both will be finding that acceptable, giving their limited resources.  They are 10 and 11 points respectively above the relegation zone, so in many regards the relief to get away from the bottom of the league itself isn’t there.  But in both cases a good cup run brings more finances, and of course greater publicity and belief.

But for the managers, going out of the cup early on, when there is a chance that a bad run in the league could draw the club into the relegation mire, is not necessarily a bad thing.  And certainly what no manager with a modest sized squad wants is the start of a set of injuries caused by FA Cup matches.

So lots at stake for local south coast pride, but a feeling for the loser (and especially their manager) that it makes it slightly easier to ensure a decent mid-table finish to the season.

Taking this into account we come back to the home-away goal scoring.

Bournemouth at home have a goal tally of 19-17

Brighton away have a goal tally of 9-18.

That makes it look like Bournemouth all the way.  Indeed in recent years it has all gone Bournemouth’s way…  In this table D is a draw and AFC indicates AFC Bournemouth was the winner.

09 Oct 2010 Brighton v AFC Bournemouth D 1-1 League One
22 Jan 2011 AFC Bournemouth v Brighton AFC 1-0 League One
30 Nov 2013 AFC Bournemouth v Brighton D 1-1 Championship
01 Jan 2014 Brighton v AFC Bournemouth D 1-1 Championship
01 Nov 2014 AFC Bournemouth v Brighton AFC 3-2 Championship
10 Apr 2015 Brighton v AFC Bournemouth AFC 0-2 Championship
15 Sep 2017 AFC Bournemouth v Brighton AFC 2-1 Premier League
19 Sep 2017 AFC Bournemouth v Brighton AFC 1-0 League Cup
01 Jan 2018 Brighton v AFC Bournemouth D 2-2 Premier League
22 Dec 2018 AFC Bournemouth v Brighton AFC 2-0 Premier League

So recent history suggests Bournemouth as well.  I’ll go for 2-1.

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