On Saturday at the Amex Stadium Brighton would have won 7-1 if Bolton Wanderers hadn’t had four factors working for them!
FIRST: Albion miss penalties, courtesy this time of Ashley Barnes. SECOND: the Amex South end woodwork i.e. the goalposts. THIRD: the Trotters’ Hungarian keeper Adam Bogdan. FOURTH: referee Mark Haywood’s timekeeping.
The first is self-explanatory. We can’t score from the penalty spot. Bolton were under severe pressure from the start and on 14 minutes Craig-Mackail-Smith’s cross was handled. Penalty! Barnes stepped up – and missed. To be fair Bogdan saved the unimpressive shot and then saved Barnes’s follow up attempt. It was going to be one of those days.
Three minutes later the second factor, the south end goal posts, made the first of four interventions. Andrea Orlandi’s great shot beat the keeper but came back off the post. Agonisingly just a minute later Dean Hammond let fly for another great shot. Bogdan soared and with fingertips touched the ball up onto the bar. Amazingly, still in the first-half, Will Buckley’s cross from the left found Mackail-Smith close in. His header beat Bogdan but rebounded of that same crossbar.
There was plenty to contemplate at half-time. We weren’t four up; it was still goalless thanks to Barnes’ misses, Bogdan’s saves and no less than three back off the woodwork.
Life got better early in the second-half. An Albion corner was cleared to our right-back Bruno. From 25-yards he controlled and half-volleyed a magnificent shot high into the right corner.
Finally, and I do mean finally, the fourth factor came into play: Mr Haywood’s timekeeping. David Ngog’s equaliser was timed at 95mins 45secs. It seemed unfair and instead of being in the play-off places, we slipped to eighth.
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Weather for Haywards Heath
Thursday 20 June 2013
Temperature: 12 C to 21 C
Wind Speed: 9 mph
Wind direction: East
Temperature: 11 C to 19 C
Wind Speed: 14 mph
Wind direction: South west