Well, that was nice. A win.
Winning isn’t something many Brighton fans or players have experienced in a while. That’s said it wasn’t glorious. In fact quite the opposite. It was hard-fought and gutsy, not that that is bad. Losing is bad, and crucially, Brighton did not lose the game or their bottle. They clung on to the game as tightly as a seagull with a chips wrapper its beak. They were gnarly and it was fun for all involved. It’s great when your team wins big, but sometimes it’s just as satisfying when they come off of a bad run with their tails up, growling and angry. Wigan weren’t anything special it must be said. Their striker, Martyn Waghorn had a poor game in front of goal and after falling behind the Latics didn’t offer Brighton much competition going forward.
Key to Brighton’s victory was the time of the goal, 54 seconds and they were away. A nice bit of interplay from Teixeira and Elliott Bennett, the later making his return to the Seagulls on loan from Norwich, set Baldock away on the right. His cross was accurate to pick out Gardner who took a touch and drove low in to the bottom corner to give Brighton a great start to the evening. This allowed Brighton to control the game and somewhat numbed Wigan’s spirits.
Brighton’s next chance was so close to being converted in to a goal. A nice cross from Lua Lua was hit first time by Teixeira only for his shot to thunder against Wigan’s crossbar. The move deserved more, the Seagulls showed great fluidity on the wings and in midfield to lead to the shot. Wigan really only showed promise through one outlet, Waghorn upfront. But that’s all Waghorn did, promise but not deliver. He flirted with a few chances mid-way through the first-half, glancing a header wide and shooting over on the half volley. This and a free-kick saved easily by Christian Walton was all Wigan did to challenge Brighton in the first half.
After the break an expected Wigan onslaught did not occur. Brighton were defensively superb, especially young goalkeeper Christian Walton who was awarded man of the match by the game’s sponsor, a decision I agree with wholeheartedly. Brighton saw what was a bit of a dull game out well, not that the game’s enjoyment mattered, three points was all that mattered.