- Albion draw 1-1 with Arsenal at the Emirates
- Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang on target for the hosts
- Glenn Murray equalises from the penalty spot
- Albion end their season against title-chasing Manchester City next Sunday
Brighton & Hove Albion celebrated Premier League survival with a well-earned point at top-four chasing Arsenal.
Glenn’s Murray’s second-half penalty earned Albion a share of the spoils after a gutsy display in north London, cancelling out Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s early spot-kick.
Chris Hughton made three changes to the side that drew 1-1 with Newcastle United last Saturday, as Yves Bissouma, Alireza Jahanbakhsh and Solly March all returned for the Seagulls.
The hosts had a chance inside the opening couple of minutes when Henrikh Mkhitaryan took a touch just outside the area and fired against the woodwork.
Arsenal were awarded a penalty with eight minutes on the clock after Nacho Monreal went down inside the box from Jahanbakhsh’s challenge, and Aubameyang sent Maty Ryan the wrong way to break the deadlock.
Hughton’s men had a penalty shout of their own turned down when Pascal Gross’s free kick hit the Arsenal wall, with a claim that it hit Sokratis on the arm.
Albion enjoyed a promising spell of their own, which began after Jahanbakhsh intercepted Bernd Leno’s short clearance and ended when the German shot-stopper kept out Glenn Murray’s header.
In the midst of that passage of play, Bissouma appeared to have his shirt tugged by Stephan Lichsteiner inside the box, but referee Taylor was unconvinced once again.
The Seagulls continued to play with real positive intent going forward, as Gross flashed a corner across the face of goal, dropping just inches away from several Seagulls players.
Ryan was called into action down the other end to keep out Shkodran Mustafi’s header at the near post from Granit Xhaka’s corner.
The Australian made an even better save moments later, when Aubameyang met Mesut Ozil’s in-swinging cross with a close-range shot that he brilliantly pushed away with his right hand.
Ryan was called into action again when he pushed away Mkhitaryan’s fierce strike, before Lewis Dunk headed clear Alexandre Lacazette’s follow-up effort.
Hughton freshened up his attack at the break with the introduction of Anthony Knockaert in place of Jahanbakhsh, and Albion started the second half brightly.
Murray brilliantly teed up March in a free-flowing Albion move, but the latter’s angled strike was comfortably saved by Leno.
March then gave Albion a chance to level the scores after going down under Xhaka’s challenge, and like Aubameyang, Murray made no mistake from the resulting penalty to level the scores on the hour mark.
Buoyed by the equaliser, Hughton’s men pressed forward on the counter-attack with pace, as Murray looked to head the ball down for Knockaert before Arsenal cleared the danger.
Arsenal began to play some neat one-twos on the edge of the area, and Ryan was forced down to his left to keep out Aubameyang’s searching strike.
Albion looked threatening on the break though, and Gross picked out Knockaert in space down the right, but the Frenchman’s angled shot was saved by Leno.
The Gunners then squandered a golden opportunity to retake the lead through Aubameyang, as the Arsenal frontman flashed a volley inches wide of the post.
Bernardo could have given Hughton’s men the lead in emphatic fashion after being teed up by Bissouma, but the Brazilian drove his fierce attempt over the bar.
Hughton’s men came even closer to scoring a decisive second goal after Knockaert played in Gross, who in turn teed up March. The winger’s diving header was saved before Gross couldn’t manage to get his follow-up strike on target.
After withstanding some late Arsenal pressure, Albion held on to claim a hard-fought draw ahead of ending the season with the visit of Manchester City next weekend.
ALBION: Ryan; Bruno, Duffy, Dunk, Bernardo; Stephens, Bissouma, Gross (Kayal 90+2); Jahanbakhsh (Knockaert 46), Murray (Andone 78), March.
SUBS NOT USED: Button (GK), Bong, Burn, Locadia.