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Brighton and Hove Albion U21 vs Reading: EFL Trophy Match Preview 2023/24

The Royals will be keen to get through to the next round of the competition.

Leicester City v Brighton & Hove Albion: Premier League 2 Photo by Plumb Images/Leicester City FC via Getty Images

Reading make the trip to the south coast this evening as they take on Brighton and Hove Albion’s U21 team.

With the Royals out of the FA Cup, they will be keen to get through to the next round of the Bristol Street Motors Trophy to give themselves a chance of going on an extended cup run.

Amid a very poor season, the EFL Trophy has provided the club with a bit of joy, but their hard-fought victory against Charlton Athletic will count for little unless they can secure a victory tonight.

Wins away from home have been hard to come by, so the visitors will need to show up at the Amex Stadium.

Ahead of this game, we have a short preview.

What? EFL Trophy Third Round

Season? 2023/24

Who? Brighton and Hove Albion U21s

Where? Amex Stadium

When? Tuesday 9th January

Time? 7pm

Opposition Manager? Shannon Ruth

Pre-Match Thoughts

I’m desperate for us to do well tonight.

Playing at a Premier League stadium is a good opportunity and I’m thoroughly looking forward to going tonight, but a victory is the most important thing.

We probably need a break from league action at times because being in a relegation battle is mentally tough.

But Brighton U21s will be a tough opponent and they can’t be underestimated. The Seagulls have some very talented young players who can cause the Royals problems.

My Lineup

Starting XI: Pereira, Guinness-Walker, Mbengue, Dean, Yiadom, Craig, Rushesha, Savage, Vickers, Camara, Ehibhatiomhan

This was a difficult lineup to choose - but if Joel Pereira and Andy Yiadom are fit - they should start.

Jeriel Dorsett and Nelson Abbey get a rest with Nesta Guinness-Walker and Amadou Mbengue starting. Tyler Bindon may not have played too much recently - but he may be a regular starter again if Tom Holmes is out for a while - so the teenager misses out.

Michael Craig starts once more, but he should probably be taken off at half-time so his minutes can be managed. Tivonge Rushesha appears alongside him, with Charlie Savage in a slightly more advanced role.

Up front, Caylan Vickers and Mamadi Camara need to support Kelvin Ehibhatiomhan if the latter is to be effective.

Getting the likes of Femi Azeez, Sam Smith and Lewis Wing on at some point could make a real difference.

Score Prediction: Brighton and Hove Albion U21 1-2 Reading

Other EFL Trophy Fixtures

Here are the other fixtures taking place in the competition.

Tuesday 9th January:

Derby County vs Bradford City (7pm)

Wycombe Wanderers vs West Ham United U21 (7pm)

AFC Wimbledon vs Oxford United (7:45pm)

Wednesday 10th January:

Blackpool vs Burton Albion (7pm)

Accrington Stanley vs Bolton Wanderers (7:30pm)

Peterborough United vs Crawley Town (7:30pm)

Tuesday 16th January:

Doncaster Rovers vs Wigan Athletic (7pm)