Brad Stratton: Albion looking to make home advantage count against struggling Toffees

Sam Baldock could be back for the Everton game
Sam Baldock could be back for the Everton game

Everton are the visitors to the Amex on Sunday as Brighton return to Premier League action after the international break, writes Bradley Stratton @BradStrat.

The Seagulls last game a fortnight ago saw them comfortably beaten 2-0 by Arsenal at the Emirates, with winger Solly March coming closest to scoring for Albion in the first half.

Against the Gunners, Chris Hughton’s players showed improvements from their prior meeting with one of the division’s bigger side, Manchester City, on the opening day of the season. After finding their feet at the Amex in September, Albion will be confident they can keep picking up positive results on home soil.

This weekend they take on an Everton side who have struggled to match the level of performance that has been expected from them for many years. They currently sit equal on points with Albion but are two places below them in the table on goal difference. The Merseyside club have only picked up one win from their past six league games, with manager Ronald Koeaman under pressure having been backed with over £100 million pounds worth of spending in the summer.

This weekend’s game may mark the first time Albion go up against one of English football’s greats in Wayne Rooney. The striker returned to his boyhood club in July after a trophy-laden 13-year spell at Manchester United that saw him score over 250 goals for the Red Devils.

One Brighton player who could make his first appearance of the season on Sunday is Sam Baldock, with the forward having returned to training prior to the international break after a lengthy absence with a calf injury.