December was Brighton & Hove Albion’s busiest months of the season, as Chris Hughton’s team had seven Premier League matches before 2018 got underway.
It proved to be a difficult opening to the month, as the Seagulls suffered their heaviest defeat of the season against Liverpool at the Amex Stadium - Jurgen Klopp’s team ran out 5-1 winners.
Emre Can’s opener and Roberto Firmino's brace put the visitors on their way to victory, and despite Glenn Murray pulling a goal back, Liverpool added another two through Philippe Coutinho and a Lewis Dunk own goal.
The Seagulls then faced back-to-back away fixtures at Huddersfield Town and Tottenham Hotspur, but no points were taken from either match, as Hughton’s men were twice beaten 2-0 on the road.
Albion produced an encouraging display at Wembley Stadium against Spurs, but Son Heung-Min’s late goal cancelled out any chance of an equaliser, despite the best efforts of Hughton’s team.
The Seagulls needed a result to end their three-match losing run, and a goalless draw against Burnley did exactly that - however it could have been a whole lot better at the Amex.
A first-half penalty was awarded to Albion and Murray had the chance of breaking the deadlock in the 35th minute, but the striker’s spot-kick rose over the crossbar to Burnley’s relief.
But a first victory of the month came in the following game when Watford visited the south coast, and it was a goal from Pascal Gross that secured all three points for the Seagulls in a 1-0 win.
Hughton’s side travelled to Stamford Bridge on Boxing Day for a tough fixture against the 2016/17 Premier League champions Chelsea, and Antonio Conte’s men sealed a 2-0 win thanks to goals from Alvaro Morata and Marcos Alonso.
The month ended with a visit to Newcastle United, and the Seagulls were forced to settle for a point, as the sides played out an uneventful goalless draw at St James’ Park.
HIGHLIGHT OF THE MONTH:
Thanks to a strike from Pascal Gross, Albion’s seven-game run without a victory came to an end just before Christmas, ahead of a daunting visit to Stamford Bridge.
With a number of players out injured, Watford visited the south coast in a vulnerable condition and the German’s low effort into the bottom corner made sure Albion took full advantage.
QUOTE OF THE MONTH:
Pascal Gross said, “The worst thing you can do is think about why we haven’t scored or why we haven’t won - you just have to keep going and believe in yourself."