Brighton vs. Derby County: Date, Time, Live Stream, TV Info and Preview

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Brighton vs. Derby County: Date, Time, Live Stream, TV Info and Preview
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Brighton only just squeezed into the Championship play-offs and will be hoping they can take some momentum into the nerve-jangling first leg of their semi-final against Derby on Thursday at the Amex Stadium. 

A last-gasp winner on the final day from Leo Ulloa gave Brighton a 2-1 away win at Nottingham Forest and put them into sixth at the expense of Reading who finished one point adrift.

Third-placed Derby have been sure of their play-off place for some time and should be favourites to make it to Wembley's final to play for Premier League status.

But nothing is certain at this time of the season, and Brighton will be confident of getting a decent result at home.

 

Date: Thursday, May 8

Time: 7:45 p.m. BST, 2.45 p.m. ET

TV Info: Sky Sports 1

Live Stream: Sky Go

 

Form Sides Going Head-to-Head

Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Both Brighton and Derby go into the play-offs with exactly the type of momentum and form that often proves the difference at this important stage of a very long season.

Steve McClaren has done a remarkable job since taking over at Derby following the sacking of Nigel Clough in September when the club were 14th in the league.

They went 14 games unbeaten following Clough's departure and put themselves firmly in contention for promotion, per BBC Sport.

The Rams go into Thursday's semi-final in excellent shape, having dropped only two points from their final six games, in Saturday's 1-1 draw with Leeds.

However, the former England manager acknowledges that when it comes to the play-offs anything can happen no matter how good a team's form is, as reported by the Derby Telegraph:

Indeed Brighton are in equally good shape, making this semi-final almost impossible to predict.

Unbeaten in eight matches, per BBC Sport, Oscar Garcia's side have had a terrific end to the season which could yet get better if they can get a good handle on the tie with a win at home on Thursday.

 

Attack vs. Defence

Ben Hoskins/Getty Images

This fixture throws together the leading goalscorers in the Championship and one of the better defences, another factor which makes for such an intriguing matchup.

Derby have scored the most goals in the division this season, bagging 84 goals in their 46 matches, per the Football League

Chris Martin has been their top scorer with 20 goals, and he has backed his side to preserve their attacking style even in the pressure-cooker environment of the play-offs, per the Derby Telegraph's Chris Watson:

Meanwhile, only automatically-promoted Burnley have conceded fewer goals this term than Brighton's tally of 40 against, a fact that should make them confident of frustrating Derby.

Two teams with different styles, Thursday's encounter is undoubtedly going to be agonisingly close.

A win for either side would set them up for a victory in the tie and a potential Wembley date against QPR or Wigan, who play in the other semi-final.

With a place in the Premier League at stake, nerves will be shredded. But, as ever, it should produce high drama.

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