Brighton make the trip to the Johan Cruyff Arena to face Ajax this Thursday in an important week in the Europa League. Both sides need a win to continue competing for qualification in the group.
Ajax currently sit bottom of Group B after three games. The Dutch side have picked up two draws and one loss, leaving them on two points, two points adrift of Brighton and AEK Athens.
In their last five games in all competitions, Ajax have two wins and three losses. Ryan Flamingo gave Utrecht the lead going into halftime, which Mike van der Hoorn doubled minutes into the second half. Kristian Hlynsson’s brace then levelled the game and then a penalty from Steven Bergwijn gave Ajax the lead. However, goals from Jens Toornstra and Oscar Luigi Fraulo gave Utrecht the late 4 - 3 win. The next loss was a 2 - 0 defeat in the Europa League against Brighton.
The third loss was perhaps the most painful against rivals PSV. Branco van den Boomen gave Ajax an early lead and Brian Brobbey also scored in the first half. However, it wasn’t enough as Hirving Lozano grabbed a hat-trick and Luuk de Jong and Ismael Saibari both scored to give PSV the 5 - 2 win. Ajax bounced back against FC Volendam. Bergwijn and Chuba Akpom both scored in the 2 - 0 win for Ajax.
The last time out was against Heerenveen. Bergwijn scored yet again along with Brobbey and a brace from Akpom to give Ajax a 4 - 1 win over Heerenveen.
Brighton sit just one place above Ajax in third. The Seagulls have one win, one draw and one loss which leaves them on four points, equal with AEK Athens and one point behind Marseille.
In their last five games in all competitions, Brighton have one win, three draws and one loss. Simon Adingra opened the scoring for Brighton against Liverpool but a brace from Mohamed Salah gave Liverpool the 2 - 1 lead going into halftime. However, Lewis Dunk scored in the 78th minute to grab a 2 - 2 draw for Brighton. Julian Alvarez and Erling Haaland both scored in the first half to give Manchester City a comfortable lead. Ansu Fati scored late on and even with Manuel Akanji’s sending off, City held on for a 2 - 1 win.
Brighton bounced back with their 2 - 0 win over Ajax in the Europa League but stumbled again back in the Premier League. Evan Ferguson drew first blood against Fulham but Joao Palhinha equalised in the second half. Despite 18 shots and 72% of the possession for Brighton, they couldn’t find a way through as the game finished 1 - 1.
The most recent outing for Brighton was another 1 - 1 draw, this time against Everton. Vitaliy Mykolenko scored early on and a point was only rescued for Brighton by an Ashley Young own goal late on, despite The Seagulls having a staggering 80% of the possession.
These teams have only met once in their histories, with the meeting coming back in October. Joao Pedro and Fati both scored in the historic 2 - 0 win for Brighton, grabbing their first ever win in a European competition.