Brighton 3 Crystal Palace 0: Stop the clocks – this was a win to remember, says Gustavo Poyet

 

The Amex Stadium

Brighton and their supporters had double cause for celebration yesterday after their first home win over arch-rivals Crystal Palace since 1988 and three points that take them back into the play-off picture following three games without a victory.

The Seagulls drew level on points with sixth-placed Leicester City thanks to two goals either side of half-time from Leonardo Ulloa and another in first-half injury-time from David Lopez in front of a record crowd at the Amex Stadium of 28,499.

Ulloa has now scored eight times in 11 appearances since moving from Almeria in January for £2m and Brighton manager Gustavo Poyet praised the Argentinian's contribution. "[He's] the kind of centre-forward we missed for a year and half after we lost Glenn Murray [to Palace]." said Poyet. "He's got a right and a left foot, he can jump, he can head, move well in the penalty area. He's perfect for English football. Can you imagine if he'd been here in August? What a difference."

Murray, the top scorer in the country with 30 goals, was anonymous even when Palace were on top in the first half. The Eagles threatened only once, when Jonathan Parr raced forward from left-back only to scoop Wilfried Zaha's pass tamely into the arms of Tomasz Kuszczak.

Palace would have moved into second place with a win but they paid for the miss when Ulloa nodded on Liam Bridcutt's forward ball after 43 minutes and raced to the far post to head in Will Buckley's cross with the help of a deflection off Jazz Richards. Then Lopez curled a free-kick over the wall and in off the bar after Kagisho Dikgacoi fouled Buckley.

Ian Holloway, the Palace manager, introduced Kevin Phillips at the interval in an attempt to get a goal back but instead Brighton extended their lead with a goal that Holloway said was "the worst I've seen us let in."

Bridcutt, Lopez and Inigo Calderon played a neat triangle of passes before Bridcutt crossed, Andrea Orlandi headed across goal and Ulloa volleyed in unmarked.

Palace had no answer, and Zaha, signed by Manchester United in January for £15m and loaned back, spent the rest of the game firmly in the pocket of Wayne Bridge – a warning of the challenge he faces next season.

"It was pretty tight until we suddenly found ourselves 2-0 down," said Holloway. "That sums up the Championship. The third goal knocked the stuffing out of us and I don't ever want to see that again. We've got eight games left to do better than that."

Poyet summed up: "It wasn't very pretty, a derby, many mistakes, but when you come here you learn to have to beat Palace. It's a day to stop time, and stay there forever. After the day we went up from League One it's my best as manager – by far."

Brighton (4-1-2-3): Kuszczak; Calderon, Greer, Upson, Bridge; Bridcutt; Lopez (Hammond, 88) Orlandi (Crofts, 63); Buckley, Ulloa , LuaLua.

Crystal Palace (4-2-3-1): Speroni; Richards, Delaney, Ramage (Wilbraham, 67), Parr; Dikgacoi, Jedinak; Bolasie (Phillips, h-t) , Williams (Moritz, h-t), Zaha; Murray.

Referee C Pawson (S Yorkshire).

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before