Brighton learn Europe opponents after securing BIG Ansu Fati deal

Ansu Fati of FC Barcelona (Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images)
Ansu Fati of FC Barcelona (Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images) /

Brighton and Hove Albion are making their debut in European football this season and today have learned their opposition in the opening group stage of the Europa League, after securing the services of top striker Ansu Fati.

They are one of three teams from the Premier League that are in this season’s second-ranked trophy across European football. The other two are Liverpool, no strangers to playing abroad, and West Ham United, who are in this tournament after winning the Europa Conference League last term.

Ansu Fati loan deal for Brighton

Brighton, who have completed the loan signing of Barcelona striker Ansu Fati before the transfer window closes have had a tough draw. They will face Dutch giants Ajax, Marseille in France, and Greek side AEK Athens. It is arguably the toughest group of the eight that were drawn on Friday.

Fati will have bought into the amazing philosophy that Roberto de Zerbi has installed at the South Coast club, and it is a move that will shock many on the continent as Brighton will be seen as an unfashionable club for the 20-year-old Spanish international forward to land. The fact that Brighton is turning raw talent into superstars – see the fees Chelsea are paying – would have had sway on his final decision.

EPL clubs kind draw

Liverpool take on LASK from Austria, Union St-Gilloise from the Belgian league, as well as the Cup winners in France, Toulouse. The Reds failed to make the Champions League when Newcastle United pipped them for fourth place last season.

West Ham will need to raise their game again if they wish to progress from a group that includes Greek team Olympiacos, Freiburg in Germany, and Serbian side TSC Backa Topola. The Hammers have started this season well but will need their squad depth to continue that form, but they coped well last season, and have arguably strengthened after losing midfielder Declan Rice.