brighton logo Player of the Month - December 2017

The calendar year ended with Brighton and Hove Albion in 12th spot in the Premier Division and averaging over a point a game with some more vital points being secured in December.

There was one win, a 1-0 success at home to Watford thanks to yet another Pascal Gross goal, the only one we managed from open play in the month. Two draws were also picked up, both 0-0 at home to high flying Burnley and away at fellow relegation candidates Newcastle United.

Those two clean sheets came about largely because of the excellence of last months winner, Maty Ryan. The Australian number one had excellent games away at Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea as well, both of which ended in 2-0 defeats.

Our first proper Premier League drubbing arrived at the hands of Liverpool who were comfortable 5-1 winners at the Amex with Glenn Murray netting from the spot. A week later, there was an even more disappointing defeat away at Huddersfield Town, highlighting the point that Chris Hughton's side do not deal well when facing a side who play a pressing game.

December 2017 Player of the Month -  Maty Ryan (73.32% of the vote)
In November, Maty Ryan stormed home to his first ever Player of the Month award with 67% of the vote. In December, it was an even more convincing win for the Australian number one as he secured just shy of 75% to take his second crown of the season. It was more than deserved as he was clearly man of the match from the 0-0 draw at Newcastle, two brilliant saves helping secure the point and clean sheet. There were more points winning saves against Burnley and Watford and he also did his best to stop Chelsea and Spurs running up big victories, restricting them both to 2-0 wins.
Played 7 (7 starts, 0 sub). Scored 0.
Second: Pascal Gross (12.25% of the vote)
The Albion managed only one goal from open play through December and it came from the German playmaker, taking his tally to the season for four goals from midfield. That came in the win over Watford and he has continued to look a real bargain at just 3m.
Third: Davy Propper (5.93% of the vote)
Are people finally coming around to Davy Propper? Some sections of the Albion fanbase have taken time to warm to the Dutch midfielder but he had another good month in December, easily being the more impressive out of himself and partner Dale Stephens.


The contenders:
Shane Duffy - Picked up a quite ridiculous booking in the draw with Burnley that led to his suspension against Watford. But he played a big part in the clean sheets against the Clarets and at Newcastle.
Lewis Dunk - Added another own goal to his collection this month. Took over the captains armband when Bruno was rested and has continued to look assured, even if the number of goals we are conceding from set pieces is a real concern.
Pascal Gross - Ran the show against Watford, scoring the only goal of the game which also happened to be our only goal from open play. His importance to the team is such that he is rested for any game that doesn't look winnable, a trick that has had real benefits.
Davy Propper - Continues to use the ball intelligently yet parts of the Albion fanbase are still yet to warm to him. One driving run against Watford was particularly impressive. Has been the better of the two out of himself and Dale Stephens so far.
Maty Ryan - A man-of-the-match performance at Newcastle was the highlight of another outstanding month. He also pulled off points winning saves against Burnley and Watford and kept the score respectable against Chelsea and Spurs.
Dale Stephens - Has started every league game so far this season but is perhaps finding the step up to the Premier League harder than first thought. Still, he has put in lots of hard graft even if he has started giving the ball away since that bloody song first appeared.