Forest Green Rovers welcome Brighton & Hove Albion to The New Lawn in Second Round of 2022-23 Carabao Cup.
Forest Green are looking to advance beyond this stage at the sixth time of asking, whilst Brighton are seeking to reach the Third Round for the sixth time in seven seasons.
Udoka Godwin-Malife is a doubt for Forest Green as he nears a return from a hamstring injury which has kept him out in recent weeks.
Matty Stevens and Harry Boyes (both knee) remain absent.
Brighton will be without Jeremy Sarmiento after he missed Sunday’s Premier League win at West Ham with a knee injury.
Manager – Graham Potter meanwhile is considering rotating his squad, with Tariq Lamptey, Levi Colwill, Deniz Undav and Neal Maupay amongst those looking to start, after failing to feature at West Ham.
Jakub Moder remains absent with a knee injury.
- Forest Green are meeting Brighton in the Carabao Cup for the very first time, although they lost their only previous meeting by a 2-0 result in Football League Trophy in October 2003.
- Brighton are visiting The New Lawn for the very first time in all competitions.
- Forest Green are hosting Premier League opposition for the very first time in this competition.
- Forest Green are winless in two previous away ties against Premier League opposition (D1, L1) – although they did lose 3-0 on penalties at Bournemouth in R2 of 2019-20 edition after 0-0 draw.
- Since they won promotion to the Premier League in 2017, Brighton are yet to lose a League Cup tie against lower league opposition (W6).
Having adapted relatively well to life in League One and comfortably beaten Leyton Orient in the First Round, Forest Green now face a tough test because their defence has been their weakness this month amidst a decent quality attack.
Brighton meanwhile weren’t at their best at West Ham on Sunday yet clinical finishing got them a deserved win, although I do expect changes here with Maupay and Undav in particular likely to cause issues for Forest Green’s defence if they can link up well up front and play their best quality.
As nice as it would be to see Forest Green spring a surprise here, I do worry about their defensive quality against the Seagulls’ attacking talent which could well be the difference.
Prediction: Forest Green 1-2 Brighton
Result: Forest Green 0-3 Brighton