Blackburn 1-1 Brighton
22/1/13 - 7.45pm
David Lopez scored from the spot late on to rescue a point on a frosty night at Ewood Park.
The below-par Seagulls were grateful for the Spaniard's composure from 12 yards, as he duly cancelled out Jordan Rhodes' first half penalty to maintain Albion's unbeaten start to 2013. Tomasz Kuszczak had also kept the contest alive with some vital stops in the latter stages.
Neither side were able to create much of note in the first half, although Poyet's men forged some decent approach at times, with Vicente a central figure early on. However, it was Blackburn's more direct play that looked the more likely route to an opener.
Defender Scott Dann, up from the back, saw a header deflect wide of the goal via the torso of Inigo Calderon. The best chance of the half arrived as Colin Kazim-Richards cleverly laid the ball into the path of the on-rushing Jason Lowe who, after breaking into the area, saw his low shot smartly saved by Kuszczak, down to his right.
Up the other end, a Wayne Bridge run and cross caused a few problems, before Liam Bridcutt bent a shot narrowly past the upright of Jake Kean's goal. The pivotal moment occured on the stroke of half-time, as the hosts were awarded a penalty.
Adam El-Abd was adjudged to have pulled Morten Gamst Pedersen to the floor, with the Norwegian going to ground as a cross entered the area. Jordan Rhodes stepped up to fire home into the bottom corner, sending Kuszczak in the opposite direction.
Not long after the break, Poyet decided to shake things up, bringing on the pacy options of Will Buckley and Craig Mackail-Smith, although it was Blackburn who created the next opening, as Kazim-Richards tried his luck from distance.
Michael Appleton had his side working hard off the ball as Albion struggled to find space in dangerous areas. Rhodes nearly doubled their advantage with a looping header, however Kuszczak was on hand to pull off a stunning reflex save to keep the ball out.
David headed narrowly over towards the end, before the Seagulls were gifted a lifeline. David had been felled by a silly challenge from David Goodwillie, and the ex-Bilbao man stepped up to cooly slot home and salvage a useful point.
The draw lifts the Seagulls up to 7th place, although they still remain 4 points off 6th place Watford.
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