Charlton - Home, Falmer Years
Season3 (H) 12/4/14 -
Season2 (H) 2/4/13 - 0-0
This was the situation in the top-ten before kickoff at the Amex on a Tuesday night after Easter weekend: Cardiff 78pt, Hull 71pt, Watford 67pt, Palace 65pt, Forest 62pt, Albion 60pt, Leicester 59pt, Derby 54pt, Bolton 54pt, Middlesbrough 54pt. You can see it could have been worse for Brighton fans and a win, on an unseasonal cold evening in early April, would cement our p-o credentials during the important run-in. Our cause had been helped when other fancied clubs suffered reversals over the holiday period, so it was up to BHA to bite the bullet at a vital moment. Gus Poyet didn't have too many fitness and injury probs in the squad to cause concern, except for a lack of numbers among front men - CMS & Hoskins had not been replaced by on loan strikers. He went for an attacking line up that included Vicente starting for once and two wingers in a 4123 formation. Bridcutt returned from sickness following his debut for Scotland and Kuszczak was back between posts after calamity by Ankergren in stoppage at Forest.
The match obviously started on level terms and continued all evening with nil-nil being the final result. Yet you would not believe how we didn't net at least once, given Seagulls dominance throughout this one-sided match. Calderon and Buckley both missed chances to put the game out of travellers reach from headers and Ulloa punted wide on more than one occasion. LuaLua and Buckley were flying down flanks aided and abetted by Bridge and Calderon respectively. Kuszczak was largely a spectator but pulled off a couple of late saves when Athletic hit us on the break. He also tipped over a long range punt which appeared destined for the top corner. Gus resisted making any changes to personnel or shape and sat back to wait for the likely breakthrough. In a frantic finish Vicente grazed the bar, while Greer struck an upright. Crosses rained over from each flank but Ulloa was battling a couple of bigguns at the back in the air. A 28k crowd was willing the ball home in a cauldron of vocal encouragement but it was mostly evaporating into dark, cloudless, starlit, frosty night air. We'd all been entertained but later went off to bed feeling slightly frustrated over again failing to get lucky.
Kuszczak, Calderon, Greer, Upson, Bridge, David, Bridcutt, Vicente, Buckley, Ulloa, LuaLua.
Champ's P 40 . W 15 D 16 L 9 . F 56 A 40 . Pt 61 Po 6
Charlton - Away, Falmer Years
Season3 (A) 26/12/13 -
Season2 (A) 8/12/12 - 2-2 ~ Mackail-Smith, LuaLua
The Championship fixture list was something of an enigma for travelling fans these days. For a kick-off there was a fixation by the FL to put Home & Away matches into consecutive pairs. Therefore Brighton fans went to Charlton on the Saturday following humiliating defeat at Palace. Although these particular trips were short, it meant there was gonna be a hellava lot of mileage accumulated during worst of the coming winter months. Anyway it was the price we paid for living in good old Sussex by the sea. Going into this game Gus Poyet had gotten El-Abd and Bridge fit again, which was handy because otherwise we'd no spare defenders - due to injury and suspension. Well over 3k travelled so increased the gate to 19k on a sunny but cold afternoon.
Against run of play, Athletic opened the scoring from a deep cross that sailed over everyone before going in at the far post (9min). Albion hit back after putting some good moves together when CMS profited from defensive error to notch an equaliser (28m). Following the interval, play continued to be exciting and the atmosphere was electric. Home fans were celebrating 20 years back at the Valley and thought they'd won this contest as time ran out. Albion were dominating but fell behind again to a soft goal (70m). Poyet had introduced LuaLua just beyond the hour and he snatched a point for BHA as Seagulls pressed hard to level. From a f-k his low shot deflected past oppositions wall and caught the keeper cold (75m). Brighton got several chances to win this open game but couldn't turn superior stats on the day into points. Gus Poyet said, 'a point is all right.' Well, perhaps he was left in a good mood, with such a short journey home ahead.
Kuszczak, Bruno (Calderon), Greer, El-Abd, Bridge, Hammond, Bridcutt, Dobbie (Barnes), Buckley, Mackail-Smith, Hoskins (LuaLua).
Champ's P 21 . W 8 D 8 L 5 . F 29 A 21 . Pt 32 Po 8