Brighton and Hove Albion remain in the thick of a relegation battle, despite securing an unlikely 3-3 draw against fellow strugglers West Ham United at the London Stadium this afternoon. The Seagulls end the afternoon 15th in the Premier League table and only two points outside the relegation zone. They are also still looking for their first win of 2020.
Recalled striker Glenn Murray scored a 79th minute equaliser – a goal that was originally disallowed for handball by referee Michael Oliver, before VAR came to Brighton’s rescue – much to the displeasure of the home fans who booed loudly on seeing the replay.
After Aaron Mooy missed a simple chance early on, goals from Issa Diop and Robert Snodgrass gave The Hammers a comfortable half-time lead and looked to have set David Moyes team on the way to a crucial three points. Although Angelo Ogbonna scored an unfortunate own goal two minutes into the second half, Snodgrass grabbed his second of the afternoon with a strike from distance to restore the home side’s advantage, before Pascal Gross gave Brighton late hope with a scrappy goal 16 minutes from time. Then came Murray’s intervention, poking the ball home from close range to secure an unlikely point.
The result leaves Graham Potter’s men still dangerously close to the relegation zone. Next up for the Albion is a massive game at home to fellow relegation contenders Watford next Saturday, where anything other than three points could see The Seagulls slip into the bottom three. Kick off at The Amex is 5.30pm.
More Radio says:
There is no doubt that Graham Potter’s style of play and philosophy make the Albion easy on the eye, however in what is a results based business, his side are no better off than they were this time last season under his predecessor Chris Hughton. Potter has been criticised for his inability to find a place for Glenn Murray, the Albion’s leading scorer over the last two seasons, with the veteran striker yet to score a league goal this season before today’s crucial strike.
The Albion’s season has followed a consistent narrative – dominating possession in games, failing to take their chances, an getting punished for defensive errors. The Seagulls need to find a cutting edge if they are to beat the drop, and for all the endeavour of Neal Maupay and promise of Aaron Connolly, Murray could still prove to be the key man heading into the final third of the season. They also need to keep the door shut at the other end with many fans asking why the combative Shane Duffy has been overlooked so frequently – something only Potter can answer.