Brighton vs Espanyol player ratings: Leandro Trossard shows why Manchester United wanted him – but new £6m striker struggles

Brighton and Hove Albion attacker Leo Trossard scored a hat-trick in the pre-season friendly against Espanyol at the Amex Stadium
Brighton and Hove Albion attacker Leo Trossard scored a hat-trick in the pre-season friendly against Espanyol at the Amex Stadium

Leandro Trossard, who was previously linked with a move to Man United earlier this window, was in top form as he netted a second-half hat-trick.

Albion defender Adam Webster also completed a successful pre-season as he was also on target with a first half header. His defensive teammate Lewis Dunk added the second, before Trossard took center stage.

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Joselu scored a consolation for the Spaniards but it was the perfect tune-up for Graham Potter’s team ahead of their Premier League opener against Erik ten Hag’s Man United at Old Trafford on Sunday.

Our reporter Ashley Adamson-Edwards was at the Amex Stadium for Sussex World and here’s his player ratings.

Brighton’s No1 had barely anything to do in his last chance to prepare for the upcoming campaign. When the opposition did get a chance, the likes of Veltman, Webster and Dunk usually had it covered. Nevertheless, a clean sheet will always be a goalkeeper’s main objective.

Webster had a great performance throughout the friendly. He fitted well into Graham Potter’s back three which could be Brighton’s go to against Manchester United. His surprise run in the 17th minute caught the Espanyol defense completely off guard and he deserved his well-timed goal.

There’s a reason Dunk is Albion’s captain and against Espanyol he showed exactly why. When ever there was a hint of pressure, his experience and ability to lead the team was shown. If an opposition player did get the better of him, he quickly forced them into a mistake. His unique header in the 48th minute showed his attacking threat too, a sublime goal.

Veltman has always been one of Brighton’s most reliable players since signing, and today he was no different.

Despite a quiet first half, Trossard was Brighton’s best attacking outlet by the end of the game. There was no question in his man of the match thanks to a superb hat-trick and an assist to set up Lewis Dunk. He could well have his best ever season at the Amex.

Mwepu had a great first half and would have scored higher had he not been taken off early on in the second. His high energy was very frustrating for the opposition and was one of the main reasons they couldn’t get out of their own half.

Alexis McAllister – 7/10

Brighton’s number 10 was comfortable on the ball from start to finish. His ability to create chances and know his defensive responsibilities was unmatched in Graham Potter’s midfield.

The Seagull’s star youngster last season looked in great shape to start the new campaign. Positioning was effortless for the Ecuadorian in the first half thanks to his intensity. Although he could have been more aware at times in the second outing, Caicedo could be the perfect replacement for Yves Bissouma heading into the next season.

Gross had a terrific afternoon at the Amex. At 31-years-old, he constantly caused a threat to Espanyol while linking up brilliantly with March down the right-hand side. At times he looked slow to react but eventually either made the perfect turn or played a deadly through-ball.

His ball in from a corner in the 17th minute also set up Webster for a well-met header and Brighton’s first goal.

Gross looked to be in perfect form and well-prepared to face Manchester United next week.

He was deadly against Espanyol. Whenever he was on the ball the Englishman looked a threat down the right-wing and deserved at least an assist for his efforts. Esapnyol’s left-back, Omar El-Hilal simply didn’t have a clue how to deal with him and was unsurprisingly taken off at half-time.

If there’s ever going to be a season where March gets consistent game-time for the Seagulls, 2022/23 could be the one.

The former Manchester United man had several chances throughout the game but couldn’t find that end-product Brighton fans desired. He linked up well with the midfield and his patience at times created some dangerous opportunities. However, in the end Welbeck failed to have any real impact.

Lallana showed his quality and footballing experience in Brighton’s last pre-season game. There was something about him that when he did come on, he looked like he could pierce the opposition defense in a heartbeat.

The 23-year-old looked impressive when brought on. With more game time, the quality he showed today could serve him well for 2022/23.

The Seagulls top scorer for the Premier League last season seemed disappointed not to start today. Had he been given more time, the Frenchman could have been more deadly. However, in the end he had a similar impact to that of Welbeck, underwhelming.

As is the usual case with substitutions, their end score is often affected by the minutes they were given. Nevertheless, Lamptey portrayed the skill and class he has at such a young age. The movement down the right was a joy to watch and defensively he seemed to know his role by heart.

Jeremy Sarmiento – 5/10

As a part of Brighton’s diamond midfield, Sarmiento slotted in well. Despite looking complacent at times and needing to be commanded by Lallana, he performed well.

When brought on, the German attacker made little effort moving for the ball and had a disappointing display.

Mitoma has excited a lot of Brighton fans recently and today was no exception. Espanyol’s right-hand side were barely aware of him thanks to his quick movement off the ball.

Jan Paul van Hecke – 5/10

He didn’t have too much to handle but looked reliable when he did and formed a good partnership with Mitoma down the left.

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