Pascal Gross: Arguably Brighton’s best ever bit of transfer business

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Brighton & Hove Albion have become the undisputed masters of the transfer market across the last  few years – unearthing plenty of hidden gems before flipping them for a monumental profit. Yet  perhaps the club’s shrewdest bit of business has come in the shape of their first ever signing as a  Premier League side.


By Luke Bissett


After gaining promotion to the top-flight in 2017, the Seagulls signed Pascall Gross for just £3 million from relegated-Bundesliga side FC Ingolstadt. And the 32-year-old has been an ever-present in the side ever since, becoming an integral cog for Brighton throughout his seven-year spell at the Amex Stadium. He is now even the club’s top scorer (30 goals) and top playmaker (45 assists) in the Premier League.  

The German made an immediate impact on the South Coast, scoring the club’s first two Premier League goals during their 3-1 victory over West Brom in September 2017. Gross was used back then as a No. 10, behind target man Glenn Murray, in Chris Hughton’s system, with the pair forming a terrific partnership to help the club stave off relegation during their first top-flight season in over 30 years.  

Brighton have become one of the Premier League’s most progressive sides in the meantime, with the  club currently competing in European football for the first time in their history. And Gross has undoubtedly been at the heart of the Seagulls’ tremendous rise. The 32-year-old has been a mainstay under current boss Roberto De Zerbi, playing more games (55) and more minutes (4798) in the top-flight than any other Brighton player since the Italian’s arrival in October 2022.  

De Zerbi has used Gross in several roles during his time in charge of the Seagulls and has made little  secret of his admiration for the technically gifted midfielder.  

“Gross is one of the best players I’ve had in my career,” said De Zerbi. “He’s a fantastic player. He can  play everywhere on the pitch. He is fantastic in terms of attitude, passion. He’s very clever in  understanding different situations. I’m lucky to have him in my team.” 

The 32-year-old has been used as a left-back, right-back, central midfielder and in a more advanced  midfield role just this season alone, showcasing just how fundamental he is to De Zerbi’s expansive style of football. Indeed, the versatile Gross has continued to be one of the Premier League’s most  consistent performers regardless of his position on the pitch, achieving a FotMob average rating of 7.74 this season – the fifth highest total in the division. He’s also made the FotMob Premier League TOTW for performances in three different positions this season!

Though the German has been nominally used in a deeper role under De Zerbi, that is not to say that his creativity has waned. No player has provided more assists than Gross in the Premier League this term (10), while this season’s tally is also the outright most by a Brighton player across a single campaign in the competition.  

The midfielder has continued to have a huge influence in the final third for the Seagulls, with only  Manchester United’s Bruno Fernandes (74) making more key passes than Gross this campaign (73). Brighton have become one of the most exciting attacking sides across the continent under De Zerbi,  and there is little doubt Gross has been vital to their forward prowess. He has made the fifth most  passes into the final third in the Premier League (158), while impressively, his 161 involvements in open play sequences that have ended in a shot is the sixth-most of any player in the competition.  

Gross is also a masterful crosser and possesses the ability to send pin-point deliveries into the box,  making them extremely difficult to stop. He often shifts the ball onto his opposite foot via a Cruyff turn to open space and create crossing opportunities.

This was evidenced in Brighton’s 1-1 draw with Everton last time out. Gross turned Toffees forward Beto inside-out before providing the ball for captain Lewis Dunk’s 95th minute equaliser. And it’s certainly not the sole example. The 32-year-old ranks third for passes into the penalty area in the Premier League this season (55), while he has delivered the most crosses into the box across the division (20). 

He has become an even more important figure at the Amex since De Zerbi’s appointment, typically operating as the heartbeat of the side. The midfielder’s 2394 touches is the third most in the Premier  League across 2023-24, as he often makes himself available as a passing option within the Seagulls’  engine room. He does not shy away from taking risks in possession to help execute his manager’s proactive philosophy – ranking fifth for progressive passes in the top-flight this term (212). 

Brighton average the second highest possession in the league (62.2%), behind only Manchester City  (65.6%), and De Zerbi clearly places a huge emphasis upon exerting control on games. The creativity of Gross has been extremely key to the success of the side, as he is able to dictate matches and split  opposition defences – ensuring their long spells of possession do not go to waste. 

Gross’ standout displays have seen him work his way into contention for the Germany squad ahead of their home European Championships this summer. While despite Brighton’s recent stumbles in the  league, they are currently in the last 16 of both the Europa League and the FA Cup. And with plenty of silverware still on offer for the Seagulls this season, Gross’ impeccable performances may be the key.


(Images from IMAGO)


You can follow every Brighton match live with FotMob — featuring deep stats coverage, xG, and player ratings. Download the free app here.

Pascal Gross: Arguably Brighton’s best ever bit of transfer business

Brighton & Hove Albion have become the undisputed masters of the transfer market across the last  few years – unearthing plenty of hidden gems before flipping them for a monumental profit. Yet  perhaps the club’s shrewdest bit of business has come in the shape of their first ever signing as a  Premier League side.


By Luke Bissett


After gaining promotion to the top-flight in 2017, the Seagulls signed Pascall Gross for just £3 million from relegated-Bundesliga side FC Ingolstadt. And the 32-year-old has been an ever-present in the side ever since, becoming an integral cog for Brighton throughout his seven-year spell at the Amex Stadium. He is now even the club’s top scorer (30 goals) and top playmaker (45 assists) in the Premier League.  

The German made an immediate impact on the South Coast, scoring the club’s first two Premier League goals during their 3-1 victory over West Brom in September 2017. Gross was used back then as a No. 10, behind target man Glenn Murray, in Chris Hughton’s system, with the pair forming a terrific partnership to help the club stave off relegation during their first top-flight season in over 30 years.  

Brighton have become one of the Premier League’s most progressive sides in the meantime, with the  club currently competing in European football for the first time in their history. And Gross has undoubtedly been at the heart of the Seagulls’ tremendous rise. The 32-year-old has been a mainstay under current boss Roberto De Zerbi, playing more games (55) and more minutes (4798) in the top-flight than any other Brighton player since the Italian’s arrival in October 2022.  

De Zerbi has used Gross in several roles during his time in charge of the Seagulls and has made little  secret of his admiration for the technically gifted midfielder.  

“Gross is one of the best players I’ve had in my career,” said De Zerbi. “He’s a fantastic player. He can  play everywhere on the pitch. He is fantastic in terms of attitude, passion. He’s very clever in  understanding different situations. I’m lucky to have him in my team.” 

The 32-year-old has been used as a left-back, right-back, central midfielder and in a more advanced  midfield role just this season alone, showcasing just how fundamental he is to De Zerbi’s expansive style of football. Indeed, the versatile Gross has continued to be one of the Premier League’s most  consistent performers regardless of his position on the pitch, achieving a FotMob average rating of 7.74 this season – the fifth highest total in the division. He’s also made the FotMob Premier League TOTW for performances in three different positions this season!

Though the German has been nominally used in a deeper role under De Zerbi, that is not to say that his creativity has waned. No player has provided more assists than Gross in the Premier League this term (10), while this season’s tally is also the outright most by a Brighton player across a single campaign in the competition.  

The midfielder has continued to have a huge influence in the final third for the Seagulls, with only  Manchester United’s Bruno Fernandes (74) making more key passes than Gross this campaign (73). Brighton have become one of the most exciting attacking sides across the continent under De Zerbi,  and there is little doubt Gross has been vital to their forward prowess. He has made the fifth most  passes into the final third in the Premier League (158), while impressively, his 161 involvements in open play sequences that have ended in a shot is the sixth-most of any player in the competition.  

Gross is also a masterful crosser and possesses the ability to send pin-point deliveries into the box,  making them extremely difficult to stop. He often shifts the ball onto his opposite foot via a Cruyff turn to open space and create crossing opportunities.

This was evidenced in Brighton’s 1-1 draw with Everton last time out. Gross turned Toffees forward Beto inside-out before providing the ball for captain Lewis Dunk’s 95th minute equaliser. And it’s certainly not the sole example. The 32-year-old ranks third for passes into the penalty area in the Premier League this season (55), while he has delivered the most crosses into the box across the division (20). 

He has become an even more important figure at the Amex since De Zerbi’s appointment, typically operating as the heartbeat of the side. The midfielder’s 2394 touches is the third most in the Premier  League across 2023-24, as he often makes himself available as a passing option within the Seagulls’  engine room. He does not shy away from taking risks in possession to help execute his manager’s proactive philosophy – ranking fifth for progressive passes in the top-flight this term (212). 

Brighton average the second highest possession in the league (62.2%), behind only Manchester City  (65.6%), and De Zerbi clearly places a huge emphasis upon exerting control on games. The creativity of Gross has been extremely key to the success of the side, as he is able to dictate matches and split  opposition defences – ensuring their long spells of possession do not go to waste. 

Gross’ standout displays have seen him work his way into contention for the Germany squad ahead of their home European Championships this summer. While despite Brighton’s recent stumbles in the  league, they are currently in the last 16 of both the Europa League and the FA Cup. And with plenty of silverware still on offer for the Seagulls this season, Gross’ impeccable performances may be the key.


(Images from IMAGO)


You can follow every Brighton match live with FotMob — featuring deep stats coverage, xG, and player ratings. Download the free app here.