REPORT: ALBION 2 PRESTON 2
- Albion draw with Preston at the Amex
- Sam Baldock and Glenn Murray overturned a 1-0 deficit for the Seagulls
- Jordan Hugill gave Preston the lead, before Simon Makienok scored a stoppage-time equaliser
- The Seagulls extend their unbeaten league run to six games
Brighton & Hove Albion were denied all three points in stoppage time, as Preston North End struck late to secure a point at the Amex.
Jordan Hugill capitalised on an unfortunate defensive error to give Preston the lead, before Albion overturned the deficit through strikes from Sam Baldock and Glenn Murray, but Simon Makienok struck in stoppage time to make the final score 2-2.
The result leaves Brighton fourth in the Sky Bet Championship table, four points behind league leaders Norwich City.
Chris Hughton named a completely unchanged starting eleven to the one that recorded a first-ever victory at Hillsborough two weeks ago.
Jamie Murphy had Albion’s first chance of the game after Bruno teed up the Scotsman on the edge of the area, but he shot over the bar.
But it was Preston that took the lead after Jordan Hugill took advantage of a poor back pass, and fired the ball into an empty net with 10 minutes on the clock.
Albion could have been on level terms just a couple of minutes later when Lewis Dunk headed inches wide from Oliver Norwood’s corner.
The Amex crowd rose to their feet in the 15th minute, as both sets of fans conducted a minute’s applause for Dylan Crossey, who tragically passed away in a car accident.
The Seagulls could have restored parity to the scoreline when Dunk played a long ball over the Preston defence towards Glenn Murray, but the striker could not divert his shot past the onrushing Chris Maxwell.
John Welsh could have doubled Preston’s lead from a corner, but he blazed his effort over the bar.
Dunk came close again with another header from a corner that went wide, before Murphy narrowly failed to connect with Anthony Knockaert’s ball into the box.
Murray and Sam Baldock linked up well on the edge of the box to tee up Steve Sidwell, but the midfielder skewed his strike wide to sum up a frustrating opening half hour for the Seagulls.
Murphy split the Preston defence to find Baldock in space, and the latter’s cut-back across the box failed to find Knockaert.
The Scotsman was involved in the thick of the action again when he played the ball out to Norwood, but the Northern Ireland international fired wide.
The winger was on the ball again out on the right-hand side and his in-swinging shot almost caught out Maxwell at his left post before going behind.
Murray latched onto a through-pass, only to fire his strike on the angle into the side netting.
Hughton’s men created a chance within the opening minute of the second half, as Murphy found Knockaert, but the latter shot wide.
But Albion’s persistence paid off with 54 minutes on the clock, after Norwood found Bruno with a superb cross-field pass. Bruno then found Baldock, who made no mistake with a clinical finish beyond Maxwell.
The Seagulls were in front for the first time in the 65th minute, as Murphy found Murray inside the box, and the latter took a brilliant first touch to elude Alex Baptiste and shot home from close range.
The hosts almost doubled their advantage after Bruno and Baldock linked up well, but Shane Duffy couldn’t quite divert his header on target.
But just as the Seagulls looked like holding on for three valuable points, Lilywhites substitute Makienok headed a long ball into the box past David Stockdale.
The game looked like it had taken yet another twist when Albion had the ball in the back of the net from Murphy’s cross, but the effort was ruled out following Bruno’s foul on the goalkeeper.
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