Today we remember; remember the tragedy which took 11 lives from us too early. A year ago today, while a near 22,500 football fans poured into The AMEX Stadium, we learned that a fatal crash had taken place, injuring 16 and killing 11. From then on Brighton, the community and the globe all adapted to the new mantra of ‘together’, which still continues to be in place today, to make sure they weren’t and will never be forgotten. RIP angels, you will never be forgotten.
On to the game which took place on Saturday; Brighton travelled up to Berkshire to face a Reading side which had lost their last 2 games in the league, and were on the end of a 4-1 drubbing by Newcastle in midweek, so they were looking to bounce back. And what better way to bounce back, than to score just 2 minutes into the game, which is exactly what John Swift did, after his free-kick missed everyone in the box, and nestled into the far corner of the net. Brighton were quick to react however, and just 6 minutes later, they were back level after Joey van den Berg scored an own goal, after he attempted to clear a corner. Swift had a low driving shot block on the line by Lewis Dunk. After a quite lacklustre driest half, Brighton came out the traps quick and lethal, with Anthony Knockaert scoring just a minute into the half, after Sam Baldock attempted cross was blocked, but fell nicely to the approaching Frenchman, who slotted the ball home past the keeper and the defender on the line. Yann Kermogant had his header ricochet off the crossbar, while former Albion defender Paul McShane did equalise for the Royals, after Danny Williams’s low cutback was perfect for McShane to hit a low shot, into the near corner of David Stockdale’s goal. Kermogant could of scored again, had it not been for Stockdale’s quick reactions to his acrobatic overhead kick. Van den Berg’s afternoon ended on a low even more, when he was booked for the second time, after fouling sub Tomer Hemed when near-through on goal. 2-2 the final score, and a fair result based on the play, maybe Reading can count themselves unlucky not to have taken the 3 points.
Stockdale (6); Made a good save to deny Kermogant’s excellent effort, but will be dissapointed with the goals he did let in.
Rosenior (6); Not a great game from him, and made it worse when he had to go off due to a late challenge by Kermogant.
Dunk (7); Busy afternoon for the centre-back, and was quick to react to deny Swift his second of the afternoon.
Bruno (7); Seemed to struggle to hold Kermogant from the off, but grew into the match, and became slightly easier.
Bong (6); Little for him to do really, most of his afternoon was defending against Gareth McClearly than attacking.
Knockaert (7); Never fails to impress me; although Brighton struggled to get any attacks going in the first half, he wanted to be the one to make something happen. His goal was well taken too, could of blasted it, but placed it instead.
Kayal (7); Hard afternoon, but stuck to the task well, and didn’t make it easy for the Royal’s midfield.
Sidwel (6); has partnered well with Kayal in Stephens absence, and could be an ideal replacement should he leave.
Skalak (6); Tough afternoon for the Czech international; lots of tracking back, and not a lot of attacking which he doesn’t thrive at.
Baldock (6); Wants to claim the goal, but it won’t be given to him, other than that he had a quiet afternoon other than his assist to Knockaert’s goal.
Murray (6); Never really got going for him, struggled to keep hold of the ball at times and couldn’t release the pressure off the defence.
Norwood (6); Home fans made their feeling known, with plenty of boos and whistles. Didn’t affect the game much in his 20 minute stint.
Murphy (5); On for Skalak to try and get some attacks going, but never really materialised.
Hemed (5); Drew the foul which got van den Berg sent off, but that was the only real thing he done.
RFC - BHAFC; Swift (2), McShane (59); van den Berg (8 og), Knockaert (46);
Att; 16,781 (2,915 Brighton)