since 1878

Ipswich Town (0) 2 - 3 (2) Brighton & Hove Albion

Sky Bet Championship 2015-16

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Referee: Keith Hill (Hertfordshire)

Manager: Mick McCarthy

Portman Road 15:00

Attendance: 21034 (Away 1132)

Manager: Chris Hughton

Match Number: 3616

Goals

Home
 Freddie Sears (54)
 David McGoldrick (65)
Away
 Kazenga LuaLua (10)
 Tommer Hemed (12)
 Tommer Hemed (67)

Substitutions

Away
Uwe HunemeierLewis Dunk (46)
Tommer HemedBobby Zamora (77)
Sam BaldockRohan Ince (82)

Cards

Away
 Uwe Hunemeier (35)
 Gaetan Bong (45)
 Kazenga LuaLua (90)

Teams

Away

David Stockdale

Bruno SaltorGrau

Gordon Greer

Uwe Hunemeier

Gaetan Bong

Liam Rosenior

Baram Kayal

Dale Stephens

Kazenga LuaLua

Tommer Hemed

Sam Baldock

Substitutes

Away

Niki Maenpaa

Lewis Dunk

Jamie Murphy

Jake Forster-Caskey

Solly March

Rohan Ince

Bobby Zamora

Match Report

Tomer Hemed's double sees off Ipswich and propels Brighton to top spot

If there was ever a game that epitomised the wonderful chaos of the Championship, it was this one, as Brighton survived a second-half fightback to secure victory over Ipswich and go top of the division.

'It was a very good spectacle for the Championship,' said Chris Hughton after his side raced ahead with two goals in the opening 12 minutes. Ipswich looked to have clawed their way back with a pair of strikes in the second half, before Tomer Hemed scored the winner.

Brighton took the lead when Kazenga LuaLua chased a long ball down the left from Gaëtan Bong and fired a low shot past Dean Gerken in the Ipswich goal. 'The ability we see today he's always had,' said Hughton of the mercurial winger, who with four goals has already matched his tally from last season. 'He's a player in form, and the goals are a consequence of the form he's in.'

The home crowd gained comfort from laughter as LuaLua failed to land his somersault celebration, but that would not last long because a couple of minutes later it was two. Dale Stephens curled over a free-kick from deep on the left, and the ball appeared to sail straight in, but Hemed rose then wheeled away. The Brighton players all celebrated with Stephens, but Hemed was keen to make it clear he had got the slightest follicle of hair on the ball.

Before the game, on the artificial pitch behind Portman Road, there was an exhibition of walking football, a slower form of the game designed for those of a certain age. In the opening exchanges, it looked like those more vintage gentleman would do a better job than the Ipswich first-teamers. Cries of 'Ole!' started from the visiting fans after 30 minutes, so great was their dominance of a home side shorn of key men such as Christophe Berra and Daryl Murphy.

Mick McCarthy bemoaned neither Ipswich's performance nor their injuries. 'I'm looking at it thinking we could have defended better, but it was a great strike,' the manager said of the first goal. 'Let's give them the credit rather than attack my own team.'

The Brighton defender Uwe Huenemeier could count himself lucky to escape a second booking after a high boot that caught Ryan Fraser in the face was not deemed worthy of a caution by the referee. McCarthy did not dwell on the decision, but did note with a half-grin that 'it was of no surprise' when the German was substituted at half-time.

Ipswich should have been awarded a penalty shortly after the break when Lewis Dunk handled just inside the area, but again the referee said no. The home fans' frustration did not last long, as the excellent Freddie Sears dug a Brett Pitman rebound from under his feet to shovel into an empty net.

Brighton came close several times in the ensuing spell, with Hemed and LuaLua nearly breaching the home defence, but it was Ipswich who found the net first. Fraser was clumsily taken down inches inside the area by Bruno, and the substitute David McGoldrick slotted the spot-kick home to level.

However, in this game there was always a yin for every yang, and two minutes later Brighton deservedly secured a win that Hughton dedicated to club employee Matt Grimstone and fan Jacob Schilt, who died in the Shoreham air crash. Hemed rose in the middle to nod home LuaLua's cross, and he did not have to celebrate ostentatiously to convince everyone that one was his goal.

Nick Miller (The Observer)

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