Brighton extended their unbeaten run to 11 games, but were fortunate to come away with a point, against a ever-improving Villa side. Brighton may of had the chances in the game, but Villa had better ones and feel that its 2 points dropped rather than a point gained. In a very scrappy first half, it was Villa who drew first blood, when Nathan Baker rose highest to head home a Albert Adomah free-kick; David Stockdale getting a big hand to the ball, but couldn’t force it out and would of been kicking himself for letting it in. Brighton had to wait until the end of the first half to draw level, after Glenn Murray hit a low shot into the corner past Pierluigi Gollini from 20 yards; Murray flicked the ball into Sam Baldock’s path, before getting it back from his attacking partner and finding the net. Into the second half, and Steve Sidwell had a chance from a Jiri Skalak corner, but his shot went well over after the Czech’s drag back. Murray could of had a second, but his looping header from a Baldock cross went just over the bar, leaving Gollini stranded. Jonathan Kodija had 3 glorious chances to put Villa in front, the first was a low shot which was well tipped away by Stockdale; then a header which hit the bar, before Stockdale kept him out a third time when he saved another header after pushing it onto the bar. Jack Grealish was looking lively since his introduction, and he had a curling shot go just wide. Albion had a chance to steal all the points, when Jamie Murphy’s low strike almost got the better of Gollini, but his strong hand managed to keep it out, and the game finished 1-1.
Stockdale (7); Will be dissapointed in not keeping out Baker’s header, but made amends elsewhere from other Villa strikes.
Bruno (7); Lots of concentration needed against Kodija and Jordan Ayew, but did well enough to stop them from creating chances.
Duffy (7); Looked solid and strong against a pacy Gabby Agbonlahor, and won pretty much everything in the air.
Dunk (7); Didn’t look out of touch once again, apart from a few moments when Agbonlahor and Adomah closed him down quickly.
Bong (5); His first poor game for a while; never looked settled against Adomah and his passing was something you would see out of a Sunday League game.
Knockaert (6); Not at his best for obvious reasons but looked lively, and on his day, could of had Jordan Amavi in his back-pocket.
Sidwell (6); Looked reletivly composed in the middle of the pitch, but was hard for him and Stephens playing against a midfield 3.
Stephens (5); It wasn’t his first nor his last horror performance in a Brighton shirt, but he will know that he needs to drastically improve if he doesn’t want to be sitting out next weekend.
Skalak (6); Some good movement off the ball, but his set-pieces were a little over the place.
Murray (7); Well taken goal, but not much for him to get involved in against 2 good centre backs.
Baldock (6); Lots of chasing down in vein, but a nice pass into Murray for his goal.
Murphy (6); Could of won it at the end, but couldn’t repeat his goal he scored 2 weeks earlier.
Norwood (6); Brought a little more attacking threat when introduced.
BHAFC - AVFC; Murray (45), Baker (20);