- Albion hit back to draw South Coast derby 1-1
- Glenn Murray scores his third goal in two games
- Steven Davis put Southampton ahead early on
- Seagulls climb to 11th in Premier League table
Brighton & Hove Albion are unbeaten in three in the Premier League but had to settle for a point for the second successive game at the Amex.
Behind to Steven Davis’s early close-range header, the Seagulls levelled six minutes after the break when Glenn Murray scored his third goal in two games.
The Seagulls looked the side more likely to go on and win it with Murray, Shane Duffy and Anthony Knockaert all going close but it stayed 1-1.
Skipper Bruno led out the side on his 200th appearance for the club but Albion made a slow start and were behind for the first time at home since the opening day.
With seven minutes on the clock, Dale Stephens brought down Sofiane Boufal to the left of goal 22 yards out. James Ward-Prowse bent the free kick over the defensive wall, onto the corner of post and bar, and when it bounced back Davis reacted first to nod home – the midfielder’s first headed goal in the top flight since 2006.
The visitors have a better away record in the league in 2017 and looked strong and organised in the opening stages.
Although Albion enjoyed plenty of possession Southampton were hard to break down. The Seagulls forced Fraser Forster into his first save in the 19th minute when he made a comfortable stop from Davy Propper’s header after the Dutchman was found by Knockaert from a free kick.
The Frenchman was warming to the task and twice in the space of a minute, as Albion built some sustained pressure, he nearly created an equaliser.
First, a driven cross from the line just eluded Murray before his left-wing centre picked out Shane Duffy, but the defender headed narrowly over from close range under pressure from Virgil van Dijk.
Albion carried on where they had left off after the break and within six minutes of the re-start they were level. Pascal Gross picked out Murray at the far post, who got above his marker to guide a header into the top corner, despite Forster’s scrambling efforts to keep it out. It was Gross’s fifth assist in ten Premier League games – and the German has also scored twice.
Murray then got across van Dijk to meet Knockaert’s cross but the defender did enough to prevent the striker from getting his shot on target.
The Seagulls were on top although they had a warning at the other end in the 70th minute when Manolo Gabbiadini's shot took a deflection off Lewis Dunk which took it over Mathew Ryan’s bar.
Albion were soon back on the offensive though and a great move ended with Duffy firing over after Knockaert’s pass found him in space 15 yards out. Knockaert then drove at the heart of the Saints’ defence but he failed to keep his shot down.
Izzy Brown and Solly March came on in the closing stages as Albion looked for a way through but a rugged Southampton defence kept them at bay.
Albion: Mathew Ryan; Bruno, Lewis Dunk, Shane Duffy, Gaetan Bong; Anthony Knockaert, Dale Stephens, Davy Propper, Jose Izquierdo (sub: Solly March 87); Pascal Gross (sub: Izzy Brown 83); Glenn Murray.
Unused subs: Tim Krul, Tomer Hemed, Connor Goldson, Ezequiel Schelotto, Markus Suttner.
Booked: Murray, Bong
Southampton: Fraser Forster; Cedric, Virgil van Dijk, Wesley Hoedt, Ryan Bertrand, Oriol Romeu, Steven Davis, James Ward-Prowse (sub: Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg 84), Duscan Tadic (sub: Shane Long 84), Sofiane Boufal (sub: Nathan Redmond 72), Manolo Gabbiadini.
Unused subs: Alex McCarthy, Maya Joshida, Jack Stephens, Nathan Redmond, Sam McQueen.
Referee: Neil Swarbrick
Attendance: 30,564 (3,023 Southampton)
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