#44: Brighton 1-0 Hull 09/02/2013

#44 BRIGHTON 1-0 HULL Championship
Saturday 9th February 2013 Image result for

HUL Titles

PRESENTER Simon Thomas GUEST Peter Beagrie
COMMENTATORS Ian Crocker & Andy Hinchcliffe REPORTER Jonathan Oakes
5.20pm Kick Off; Amex Stadium     5-8pm Football League Live on Sky Sports 2

HUL Ident HUL Sponsor HUL Intro

Context of the Match: January was an interesting month at Brighton and Hove Albion. It began with an emphatic away victory at Ipswich on New Year’s Day, after a winless December. That was followed up four days later by knocking out Premier League Newcastle in the FA Cup for the second successive season. Three points arrived courtesy of Derby but since then the wheels have stalled somewhat. Back to back away draws at Birmingham then Blackburn were not ideal preparation for the Fourth Round of the Cup and a visit from the megastars of Arsenal. As the Gunners had to get through a Replay before facing the Albion, the match wasn’t selected for Live broadcast unfortunately. The team put in a very good showing, being edged out by three goals to two. The final match before today was at Hillsborough, where Brighton’s poor record continued with a defeat last week. All of which had placed the team in eighth position ahead of Hull’s trip to Sussex for the Saturday teatime clash. The Tigers were going great guns in third place, having lost just once in their previous eleven League matches. The reverse fixture occurred on the opening day of the season, as the home side ran out one-nil winners. Brighton had improved upon their squad since then, with new additions in the January transfer window most notably that much-needed striker as Argentinian Leonardo Ulloa was signed from Almeria. If Brighton were going to go the distance this season and reach those much-coveted Play Off places, they needed to show they could stand up to tests like this against Hull. The away side came to town with the best away record in the League.

HUL BrightonHUL Hull HUL Subs

The Teams: Gus Poyet made two changes from the side that lost to Sheffield Wednesday last weekend; one enforced and one tactical. A formation change occurred with two strikers up front – Craig Mackail-Smith in alongside recent capture Leonardo Ulloa. The man from Argentina was signed for £2million from Spanish side Almeria and immediately made a fantastic impression by scoring on his debut in the FA Cup Fourth Round defeat to Arsenal. CMS replaced Ashley Barnes who was sent off in the previous loss. Bruno returned after a month out through injury, replacing Inigo Calderon. Gordon Greer had been out with a hamstring injury but was on the subs bench of late. Matthew Upson made his home debut after signing on loan from Premier League Stoke City, having not featured much there this campaign. Adam El-Abd was back from international duty after featuring for Egypt in midweek against Chile, which took place in Madrid for some reason. Will Buckley and Vicente had both suffered spells on the sidelines of late but were fit enough to make the bench tonight. Hull made just one switch from their previous fixture, with Hobbs at the back coming in for Abdoulaye Faye. David Stockdale played in-goal, currently on loan from Fulham. Our former loanee Paul McShane started for the Tigers. It was striker Jay Simpson who got the only goal of the game in the reverse fixture on the opening day, he was being relied upon for goals in the absence of top scorer Sone Aluko who was missing through injury. The manager’s son Alex Bruce began in the heart of midfield. Steve Bruce was in charge of Sunderland when they lost here in the League Cup last season. The match official was Stuart Attwell.

HUL Thomas HUL Beagrie HUL Studio

The Coverage & Presentation Team: Owing to Hull’s excellent form, this tricky looking match at our Falmer home was moved to the day’s late kick-off, televised Live on Sky Sports. Regular first choice pairing of host Simon Thomas and pundit Peter Beagrie presented coverage from the studio within the North Stand. The programme began at 5pm ahead of kick-off twenty minutes later as consisted of the familiar format of bringing us up to speed with the day’s 3pm results before building up to the big match. Goals flew in everywhere in the Division, with two-all draws between Wolves and Leeds and also Sheffield Wednesday with Derby. Second place Leicester lost at bottom-place Peterborough, which opened it up at the top for Hull to move into the automatic places if they avoided defeat. Brighton had a core Latino influence which Sky highlighted in a pre-recorded feature as Andrea Orlandi, Bruno, Inigo Calderon and David Lopez invited new signing Leonardo Ulloa to their local Spanish tapas restaurant, Casa Don Carlos in the Lanes, for a ‘chatear’. Ulloa didn’t speak much English but thankfully the quartet were all on hand to translate and help him settle in. When Sky’s Football League reporter Jonathan Oakes mentioned the fifth member – Vicente – they all laughed, saying he preferred the siesta. The piece showed how well they had all gelled, had a togetherness despite competition for places. They also knew the story of Brighton and Hove Albion, where the club had come from to reach this magnificent set-up now and where they all wanted to be in future. Oakes spoke live with manager Gus Poyet in the tunnel ahead of the match. He explained the change in formation today, with Ulloa now able to be Mackail-Smith’s foil. “Everybody knows that he plays better when he plays with a target man up front so they got the chance to show us, to all of us, that that’s the best combination right now.” It came across that Poyet was somewhat reluctant to change but would give it a go here and see.

HUL Spanish Restaurant HUL Bruno HUL Kick Off HUL Comms

After the break, and a quick chat with Hull manager Steve Bruce, Simon Thomas handed up to the commentary box where Ian Crocker and Andy Hinchcliffe were waiting. This was a rare appearance back in the Football League for Crocker, who was more familiar to viewers North of the border. He began his career at Sky in the mid-to-late 90s becoming the voice of the new SPL until the rights transferred in 2002. At this point Crocker became the number one on the Football League, covering the vast majority of Live matches up and down the country including our Play Off Final win over Bristol City. This continued until he joined Setanta in 2006 to once again take the mic for the Scottish Premier League. During his time with Setanta he also covered Live FA Cup and Premier League matches before the company went bust in 2009. He then made the extremely rare move back to Sky, rejoining with the SPL rights. For the first year back he was freelance, allowing him to enjoy Champions League nights for STV, as well as Cup highlights matches and then the 2010 World Cup for ITV. Since 2010 he’s been on the staff roster with Sky and predominantly voices Scottish games as well as helping out on occasions back in England on Live League and world feed Premier League commentaries. Alongside him was Andy Hinchcliffe, who began working for Sky towards the end of 2009 before quickly moving up the pecking order to cover the majority of weekends behind Don Goodman’s number one position. Crocker brought us the team news before it was time to kick things off. Titles and graphics remained as they had been all season.

HUL Half Time Stats HUL Coming Up HUL Goal Analysis HUL Goals Round Up

There was little for Simon Thomas or Peter Beagrie to analyse at half-time in terms of clear-cut chances. The Match Stats showed Brighton were on top at the break but lacked the killer instinct. After the final whistle, reporter Jonathan Oakes spoke with Liam Bridcutt and Man of the Match Tomasz Kuszczak on the pitch. Bridcutt praised Vicente for his “quality to kill teams”, something the Albion had really missed of late. The League table showed Brighton moved up to seventh just two points behind Middlesbrough. The Play Offs were now a realistic ambition. After the break, just under half an hour was left to review the game and the Division as a whole. Peter Beagrie described El-Abd’s influence on the goal as being a “wiley old fox”. Leonardo Ulloa was singled out for his performance too; offering physicality, honesty and hard-work. Beagrie believed goals would come for him with better service, as the likes of Buckley began to return. Oakes caught up with Poyet post-match, who believed “over the ninety minutes we were a bit better than them.” On Vicente, who Poyet almost decided to play from the start, he said “That quality around the box, that’s why he played at the highest level… That’s why we want him to be an important part between now and the end.” Hull’s Steve Bruce bemoaned his side’s missed chances and bad luck for missing an opportunity to go back up to the top two. The final portion of the programme was spent looking at some of the key goals from the day’s other Championship matches, talked through by the studio duo before time was up.

HUL Vicente On HUL Free Kick HUL MOTM HUL Poyet

Story of the Match: Draws had been costly for the Albion so far, with very few defeats but not enough wins keeping the side out of the Play Off places. Hull’s Robert Koren was lively in the early stages, seeing a long-range shot not far wide as well as El-Abd bravely blocking in the box – being caught in the process. Despite this, Brighton dominated the ball in the first quarter of an hour as usual; enjoying 70% possession but neither side created any shots to trouble the goalkeepers. Hull’s tactic was, when out of possession, to throw ten men behind the ball and make it difficult for the Albion to unlock the killer pass. David Lopez was restricted to a shot from outside the box which needed to be pushed away by David Stockdale. Andrea Orlandi struck from a similar position with a direct free-kick after half an hour, again Stockdale needing to leap into action. Right on half-time, Bruno’s cross from the right touchline was met by a powerful header from Ulloa, just unable to direct it on target and the sides went in level at the break. There was a moment of panic for Brighton after an hour when Stephen Quinn’s cross wide on the left took a huge deflection off Bruno high up in the air and with the wind swirling and the rain falling had Kuszczak scrambling. The ball crashed down and would’ve gone in had the ‘keeper not managed to parry away whilst losing balance. It took a while for the Albion to get started in the second period so something needed to change. The decision was made to bring on Vicente for the final half hour in place of Dean Hammond and push on a bit more. The Spaniard lifted the crowd instantly as they willed on the team for the winner. A fantastic chance fell Orlandi’s way after sixty-six minutes following a terrific passage of play that began with who else but Vicente. He held the ball up ten yards into the Hull half facing his own goal. He managed to get a little bit of space and fire an amazing reverse ball some forty yards to release Wayne Bridge on the wing. His low cross to Ulloa was touched away only as far as Orlandi who arrived with pace. He had time and space but bodies on the goalline. He opened his body up for a sidefoot finish but from fifteen yards he blazed the chance too high. That wasn’t to say it was only the home side going for it. Hull too made a couple of changes and nearly took the lead through Robbie Brady’s wonderful forty yard effort, Kuszczak having to stay alert. He needed to have a strong hand again a couple of minutes later as Elmohamady’s shot was heading into the bottom corner following a header out from Matt Upson. That was probably the pick of the saves. It was becoming increasingly clear that you had to do something special to get a goal today. Step forward Vicente. With seven minutes remaining his free-kick right on the edge of the penalty area was that something special. His left-footed strike was low and powerful, beating the goalkeeper who did gets a touch on the way. The wall jumped up as the ball stayed grounded and, aided superbly by Adam El-Abd’s presence to just nudge said wall out of the way, Brighton had the breakthrough. Commentator Ian Crocker usually had a good goal call in him and didn’t disappoint here; “Vicente! He finds a way through. That is the moment, that is the goal that could well edge Brighton closer to the Play Off pack.” To emphasis how difficult the kick was, Robbie Brady had one in an identical position just a minute later but hit the back of the stands rather than the back of the net. Gus Poyet brought on Inigo Calderon to shore things up for the final few minutes and the Seagulls ground out a hugely important victory to move within touching distance of the top six. The result didn’t damper Hull’s season too much as they remained in the hunt all season and gained promotion as runners-up behind Cardiff. With three of the next four fixtures taking place at The Amex, this would be a crucial period in Brighton’s season.

HUL Results HUL Table


HUL Replay HUL Goal



About Mark O'MEARA
I am Mark O'MEARA.

3 Responses to #44: Brighton 1-0 Hull 09/02/2013

  1. Pingback: #43: Brighton 2-0 Newcastle 05/01/2013 | Mark O'MEARA

  2. Pingback: #45: Crystal Palace 0-0 Brighton 10/05/2013 | Mark O'MEARA

  3. Pingback: Small Screen Seagulls; 2012/13 Season part 2 | Mark O'MEARA

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