- Albion lose 2-1 to Celtic after conceding late goal
- Dessie Hutchinson fired the Seagulls into a first-half lead
- Regan Hendry and Mark Hill score for Celtic
- The Seagulls travel to Whitehawk for their next pre-season game
Brighton & Hove Albion’s under-23s were narrowly beaten 2-1 against Celtic at the Scottish Premier League side’s training ground this afternoon, after conceding a goal in the closing stages of the game.
Dessie Hutchinson fired the Seagulls into a first-half lead, with Simon Rusk’s team playing some attractive football, but goals after the break from Regan Hendry and Mark Hill swung the game in Celtic’s favour.
Albion created the first chance inside the opening 15 minutes, as George Cox raced into the final third and delivered into the feet of Jordan Davies, but the winger’s first-time effort flew over the crossbar.
The deadlock was broken in the 19th minute when Albion’s early pressure proved too much for the hosts, and it was Hutchinson that found the back of the net, following neat play from Max Sanders and James Tilley, which led to the Irishman drilling the ball into the bottom corner.
Rusk’s team continued to press and Jayson Molumby forced Celtic’s goalkeeper into a fine save low to his left-hand side, after the midfielder fired at goal from Cox’s square ball inside.
Celtic’s best chance came moments before the half-time whistle, but their headed attempt sailed over the crossbar from a set-piece delivery, as the Seagulls held onto their lead going into the break.
Albion goalkeeper Robert Sanchez was called into action on the hour mark, when he got down well to deny a Celtic free kick which beat the wall and looked to be heading for the far corner.
But the hosts restored parity in the 63rd minute when Hendry finished off a free-flowing move down the right wing, as he arrived late in the box and fired the ball past Sanchez into the bottom corner.
Rusk made a number of changes after Celtic’s equaliser, with only Molumby, Hutchinson and Tilley remaining on the pitch to complete 90 minutes for the Seagulls.
Billy Collings replaced Sanchez between the sticks for Albion, and the shot-stopper was called into action inside the closing stages, as he denied the hosts a second goal with a brilliant reaction save.
But with just three minute of normal time remaining, Celtic delivered a cruel blow as Hill found space on the edge of Albion’s penalty area, before shifting the ball onto his left foot and bending it past Collings to make it 2-1.
Albion pressed forward but were unable to find a second goal of the their own late on, as Rusk’s team gave a good account of themselves in a competitive match against the Scottish giants.
ALBION: Sanchez (Collings 74); Forbes (Moore 74), White (Hall 79), Barclay (Kerr 74, Cox (O’Sullivan 79); Collar (Ajiboye 68), Molumby, Sanders (A.Davies 68), Hutchinson, J.Davies (Dallison 68); Tilley.