Brighton team news: Graham Potter makes big decision on Seagulls' "best player"

Brighton manager Graham Potter claps the fans

Lewis Dunk is undertaking a slightly different role for Brighton this season, according to journalist Tom Barclay

What has Tom Barclay said about Lewis Dunk?

Barclay has noticed that Graham Potter has administered a change of roles in Brighton's backline this season. 

Whereas Dunk would traditionally take up the most central spot in the Seagulls' back three, the re-introduction of Shane Duffy after last term's loan move to Celtic has seen the Brighton captain pushed out to the left. 

Speaking to GIVEMESPORT, Barclay said: "He's shifted Lewis Dunk onto the left side of his back three - which is quite interesting because Dunk was brilliant in the middle, Dunk's probably Brighton's best player - to accommodate Duffy in the middle, and Duffy so far has been very good."

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Is the change working?

Evidence thus far suggests it has been a wise decision from Potter to re-introduce Duffy and push Dunk into the left centre-back position. 

Duffy has been in great form in the early stages of 2021/22. As well as finding the net against Watford, he's averaged 5.4 successful aerial duels per match - the best return of any defender in the Premier League this season.

Duffy and Dunk have started every top flight game thus far and Brighton have one of the best defensive records in the division - only Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchester City have conceded less times than the south coast club, who have also kept two clean sheets.

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Where could Brighton finish this season?

Brighton currently sit in fourth place although it would be a shock to see them finish in any of the European spots this season. 

It shouldn't be forgotten that they've enjoyed a good run of fixtures at the start of the campaign, with Leicester being the only elite opposition they've faced so far - although they did actually beat the Midlands side 2-1.

Once Brighton have faced the likes of Arsenal, Man City and Liverpool by the end of October, we should get a better indication of what Potter's side can achieve this term. 

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Jake Forster-Caskey

Jake Forster-Caskey

Nonetheless, despite the focus on defensive changes, their season will hinge more on improvements at the other end of the pitch. 

Brighton finished joint-fifth for clean sheets last season but scored less goals than Crystal Palace, Newcastle and Southampton to name a few. 

If they can maintain or better last term's defensive efforts while being sharper in the offensive third, there's no reason why they can't make the top half with twelve points to their name already. 

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