Post-match report for our last game: Crystal Palace, Monday, 13th May 2013
Brighton v Palace
PITCHSIDE NOTEBOOK; from the Amex, Falmer
Play-off semi-final second leg; first match score 0-0
RESULT; 0-2 . (ht 0-0) . AGG SCORE; 0-2 .
SHAPE; 4-3-3 . GATE; 29,591 . REF; Prem quality and let it flow.
WEATHER; cold with showers and windy . PITCH; good as it gets for May.
ATMOSPHERE; like when you go to a big boys party for the first time and can't keep your end up.
TEAM; . . . . . Kuszczak
. . Calderon, Greer, Upson, Bridge
. . . . David, Bridcutt, Hammond
. . . . . Buckley, Ulloa, Orlandi
BENCH; Brezovan, El-Abd, Painter, Dicker, Crofts, Barnes (64), LuaLua (73)
This was the big one in more ways than one. There was more plod surrounding the community stadium than at the G7 intel meeting but hey ho, it was Palace all over again. Talk was of; contracts, Wembley on a Bank Holiday, on-field over-achieving, off-field under resourced, wags expensive field trips.
Gus Poyet had plenty of squad members to select from and didn't have to think too hard to get a starting eleven.
GOALS; 69 min. Palace were turning the screw and slung over a cross from the left. Kuzczak fatally didn't come and was rooted on his line as the header bulleted home. 0-1 - we'd switched off and they made us suffer.
88 min. Albion were chasing the game and a moment of Prem class sealed our fate. 0-2 - they wanted it more than us.
SUBS; 64 min. Orlandi was withdrawn for Barnes. The Spaniard had taken a knock or two and was less effective in the second period. Barnes nearly notched twice within seconds of taking to the field. It is the way the mop flops in football.
73 min. Calderon was sacrificed in an attempt to inject pace via LuaLua in 424 set up. David moved to right back and Albion had to go forward irrespective of the shape.
MOM; Bridcutt took plaudits and did his usual ninety minutes of graft. Midfield was off key as a playmaking unit, where we went from side to side up to opposition area and then backwards again. Wingers couldn't find Ulloa, who was generally in the pocket of defenders. Albion talked a good game beforehand but didn't deliver on the night as the clock ticked down.
TRUE BLUE SAID; 'to be fair, Palace were the better team. We looked lightweight and lacking in determination - physically and mentally.'
HIS MATE SAID; 'you know what, Ollie sussed us out and they came on strong second half. The crowd sensed it was all going down the tube and couldn't do much to lift our outfit.'
CRYING KID SAID; 'it's the worse day of my life.'