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Aston Villa v Brighton: Three Seagulls danger men

By Luke Hatfield | Aston Villa | Published:

Aston Villa face Brighton at home this weekend on their return to Premier League action, but who do Dean Smith's side need to be wary of?

Who do Villa need to be wary of this weekend?

We've highlighted three Brighton players who could look to upset the fans at B6 this weekend here...

Neal Maupay

Neal Maupay knows where the goal is.

What could have been? Villa were linked with a move for Maupay throughout the summer, despite the club already splashing the cash on Brazilian front-man Wesley in a £22m deal - of course, Maupay eventually headed to the south coast in a deal worth £16m.

So far, Wesley has just edged Maupay in terms of his stats so far this season, with the Frenchman netting three times to Wesley's four, with the latter also registering an assist too. But that's not to say he won't be a worry for Villa's defence.

He's already proven himself an adept goalscorer, and is more than willing to rough it up against opposition centre backs - and netted in Brighton's stunning 3-0 win over Spurs ahead of the international break.

Villa's centre back pairing of Tyrone Mings and Bjorn Engels will need to have their wits about them if they hope to keep the 23-year-old quiet.

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He is known to get quite worked up over the course of 90 minutes however, so should he struggle to get into the game at Villa Park on Saturday, he could be liable to lash out and potentially get himself in trouble with the match officials.

Aaron Connolly

Aaron Connolly is coming off a great start to the season.

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What a season it's been so far for Brighton forward Aaron Connolly.

Having broken into the first team at the Amex Stadium, the Irishman is coming off his best Premier League performance to date along with his first senior appearance and start for his national team.

To put it bluntly, the 19-year-old is riding a wave of confidence at the moment and Villa will need to be careful if he's in the same mood he was against Spurs, where he caused their defenders a world of problems as he bagged a brace.

A potent finisher inside the penalty area, Villa will ill be able to afford him the room with the ball at his feet in the box, where he does the majority of his work.

He's not the most physically imposing player, so it might benefit Dean Smith's side to use that against him, although he is quick off the mark so sticking too tight could cause problems.

He lined up against Villa in the Carabao Cup win for Dean Smith's men.

Aaron Mooy

Aaron Mooy had a brilliant spell at Huddersfield, now he's hoping to push on at Brighton (AMA/Sam Bagnall)

Known to many a Premier League fan, Aaron Mooy is far from a prolific goalscorer, but his creative abilities are what really make him a threat to opposition teams.

He's yet to register a goal or assist so far this season since joining the Seagulls from Huddersfield Town, but he's still capable of playing the killer pass or supplying the cross which opens a team up.

Lining up on the left side of Brighton's midfield against Spurs, he didn't grab the headlines but played every minute of the win.

He's also a major threat from set pieces, whether that be a direct attempt or whipping a delivery that causes chaos in the box. He's a tough tackler too, so the likes of John McGinn and Jack Grealish should be aware of that threat going forward too.

Like Connolly, he's not the biggest player on the pitch, so he's less likely to win aerial challenges - although he can go in and out of games at times too.

Luke Hatfield

By Luke Hatfield
Digital Sports Journalist - @LHatfield_Star

Digital Sports Journalist based in Wolverhampton working on the Express & Star and Shropshire Star.

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