JRaham Potter’s side still have trouble capitalizing their chances, and they could add a missed penalty here to their long list of missed chances. Pascal Gross was the culprit, and there were other opportunities as well for a team that likes to dominate without making the most of it. I felt a hard draw on them, but they only blamed themselves.
The rivalry between these two teams may be strange but that does not mean that it is not fierce, and the night was filled with tension and intensity from the first minute. The Palace are the team Brighton would love to beat, perhaps more than any other team, but in the Premier League they have struggled to do so lately. Here, the Potter players began as if their five-legged march against the palace was a personal insult to each of them.
At their energetic best, Brighton is a fast and fluid team capable of shaping opportunities at will. They weren’t quite as creative in the first half hour on the south coast, but they were still in control before the break. Aside from a few moments of promising counter-attacks, Palace relied on goalkeeper Jack Butland to keep their balance.
The hero’s first important save came after 10 minutes, when Leandro Trossard passed the goal after a defensive foul. His second goal was to deny Gross a penalty, jumping to his lower left as the Brighton midfielder made a strange effort neither down the middle nor toward the corner.
The penalty was the result of Farr’s check, with referee Robert Jones needed a second look before deciding that Will Hughes had thrown Joel Feltman on the lawn. Vieira was enraged by the decision, looking every inch at the tyrannical existence he had during his playing days, but only seconds passed before he suddenly thanked Goddess Far instead.
This time it was a foul on Putland that Jones missed, as Neil Maupai used his knee to knock the ball out of the hands of the Palace keeper. Maupay, the master of the wind, celebrated with familiar happiness in front of the visiting fans, so one could imagine that he felt very ashamed when his efforts were later discarded.
The same flow continued after the break, when Jacob Moder seemed most likely to break the deadlock. The Polish midfielder, strong and dangerous, first hit the crossbar with a powerful shot. Despite all of the Palace team’s offensive potential, as Michael Ulis, Gallagher and Iberishi Izzy were hopping around Odson Edward, they barely made a noticeable attack. Olise only showed his willingness to take the match to Brighton, and had little support in that regard.
All this needed to be changed in one sweeping move. From back to front they passed the ball, played through the lines and pulled Brighton out of shape. In the end it came to Jeffrey Schlubb, and from there to Gallagher. His strong end was typically emphatic. Brighton had to attack, push with everything he had, and Andersen was the man who bowed when a Mubay cross hit him on his toe and dribbled very slowly over the line.