Albion Off The Mark With Win Over Baggies

Brighton secured their first Premier League victory with a 3-1 win over West Brom at the Amex this afternoon.

Pascal Gross opened Albion’s Premier League scoring just before the break from close range, with the midfielder adding another from 20 yards out three minutes after the restart. The German provided the assist to Tomer Hemed which all but sealed all three points for Albion, with James Morrison scoring a consolation for the visitors late in the second half.

 

Chris Hughton’s side remained unchanged from their 0-0 draw at Watford two weeks ago, with Glenn Murray back on the bench after recovering from an ankle problem.

 

It was a cagey opening ten minutes of the game with both sides looking to build from the back. A speculative long range shot from Solly March was the only real effort from either side in that period.

 

Albion thought they’d take the lead after 13 minutes, as Anthony Knockaert’s free kick was knocked back to March on edge of the box. His left foot shot was fumbled by Baggies ‘keeper Ben Foster, with Shane Duffy on hand to stick the ball in the back of the net, but the Seagulls defender was ruled to be offside.

 

The Seagulls took control of the game in the first half, upping the tempo and forcing West Brom into mistakes in the final third.  Their first effort on target saw Knockaert have a go from 25 yards out, but it was comfortably taken by Foster.

 

Former Albion youth player Gareth Barry had Tony Pulis’ side’s best chance in the first half, forcing Maty Ryan into making a spectacular save with his half volley from outside the box on 39 minutes.

 

Albion found the breakthrough minutes before the stroke of half time. March’s cross from the left found Gross at the back post, with the 26-year old’s deflected shot finding its way past Foster for Albion’s first league goal of the season.

 

Three minutes into the second half Albion doubled their lead, as Gross finished off a marauding run with a low shot from 20 yards that beat Foster to his right.

 

The former Ingolstadt player almost turned creator from a corner on the left on 58 minutes. Shane Duffy rose at back post to head the ball straight at Foster with the West Brom defence clearing the ball to safety.

 

However Gross did add an assist to his two goals five minutes later, with his cross from the left headed home by Tomer Hemed for goal number three.

 

Despite being three goals down, the visitors turned up the heat and put Albion on edge for the final 13 minutes by getting a goal back. Kieran Gibbs’ cross was headed across goal by Oliver Burke’s header, with Morrison finishing off the move to reduce the deficit.

 

West Brom continued to apply pressure, with Morrison denied a second by Ryan in added on time, however they were unable to get a second goal back.

 

A first win of the Premier League season for Brighton sees them move up to 13th in the table, with their next game away at Bournemouth in six days time.

 

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