|Mackail-Smith 11||FT||Ruben Castro 45, Casado 49, Sergio Rodriguez 76|
Brighton & Hove Albion’s tour of Spain ended in a 3-1 defeat as Real Betis produced a slick and ruthless display to come from behind in Pedro del Pinatar.
Craig Mackail-Smith had given Sami Hyypia’s men an early advantage but Betis fought back in impressive fashion to inflict a first defeat on Albion in pre-season.
Albion’s great goalscoring form on pre-season continued within 11 minutes as Mackail-Smith nipped onto an under-hit Jake Forster-Caskey strike in the Betis box, and calmly fired the Seagulls ahead with his third goal in pre-season.
Real tried to respond as Ruben Castro and Alvaro Vadillo were thwarted by Casper Ankergren while Damien Perquis could only hit a group of Albion bodies with a low drive from distance.
Albion’s resistance was broken just before the break as Javier Matilla broke through the middle after a neat interchange with Vicenzo Renella, before his run was ended by Vitalijs Maksimenko but the ball fell kindly for Ruben Castro to sweep home.
Betis opted to make numerous changes at the interval, and the second-half side came out firing on all cylinders.
Dani Pacheco went close to a second for Betis within two minutes of the restart, deflecting his effort just wide but just two more minutes later Jorge Casado’s diving header put Real ahead.
Pacheo came close to adding to Betis’s lead, half-time Albion substitute Christian Walton pushing the Spanish midfielder’s free-kick around the post.
Hyypia then introduced newest signing Aaron Hughes for his first taste of football for Brighton as the Northern Irishman replaced Gordon Greer.
Albion then had the post to thank while Walton was on full alert to save Sergio Rodriguez’s rebound as Betis continued to look threatening.
Rodriguez was not to be denied though and on 76 minutes the Betis an capitalised on a defensive error, striking in off the post to give Walton no chance.
A Rohan Ince half volley almost brought the Seagulls back into the game but Dani Gimenez was equal to the midfielder’s effort while Walton showd his qualities as he tipped over Bruno Gonzalez’s late header.
The Seagulls now return to England tomorrow and continue their pre-season campaign on Wednesday, away at Crawley Town.
ANKERGEN (WALTON 46)
GREER (HUGHES 60)
MAKSIMENKO (REA 46)
AGUSTIEN (HUNT 60)
FORSTER-CASKEY (HARRIS 60)
BUCKLEY (CALDERON 60)
MACKAIL-SMITH (LUALUA 46)
DE LA HOZ