By Tim Hodges from the Amex
Brighton & Hove Albion 1 Nottingham Forest 0
Albion beat Nottingham Forest with an injury time goal from super sub Will Buckley.
Buckley who came from the bench to score twice to save Albion’s first ever Amex home game in August , smashed the winner after being teed up on the edge of the six yard box by Romain Vincelot.
The game until then had been heading for a goalless draw with neither team taking their chances.
The first half was pretty much a non event with Forest’s Anderson having the only chance of note when he blasted a great opportunity wide of the goal.
Albion despite Craig Mackail –Smiths industry failed to create a scoring chance in the first half.
Billy Paynter was coming very deep to try and win the ball for Albion and Craig Noone was playing extremely wide and appeared to be almost isolated at times.
Jara Reyes back from injury for Albion looked hugely composed and confident at left back and was always eager to find forward player and did so accurately.
Neither keeper Lee Camp for Forest nor Casper Ankergren really had reason to dirty their gloves, although Ankergren did make a hash of a back pass from Greer, but his sliced clearance resulted in a non eventful corner for Forest.
The match erupted into life in the second half, when first Tudgay and then Anderson again went very close to putting Forest ahead. Perennial Albion punisher Tudgay sent his header just wide of the post.
The Worthing born striker usually scores against the Albion, but not on this occasion.
Not long after Majewski fizzed a shot across the box which narrowly missed the far upright – it seemed that if either was the deadlock it would be Forest.
Adam El Abd got a great reception from Seagulls fans as he warmed up at the Amex for the first time.
But it was Lua Lua who on as a substitute for Barnes who had an impact on the match. Bizzarely just as he stripped off to enter the fray he revealed a shirt with N0 30 Buckley on the back, although this soon dealt with by the Albion backroom staff.
Paynter and Navarro combined to send the now permanent number 25 away down the wing and his superb cross was headed just wide by Noone.
It was almost Noone’s last contribution as he was replaced by Albion’s first ever seven figure signing Will Buckley.
Buckley almost created a chance for Mackail – Smith but Camp got there in the nick of time.
Taricco, again his legs belying his age was dealing with Forest’s occasional forays with ease, taking one particularly heavy tackle from Greening in his stride.
A shot from McGoldrick was deflected over the bar by Dunk, and Albion dealt with the resulting corner.
With five minutes left Vincelot replaced Navarro in what turned out to be an inspired substitution.
With the board announcing 4 minutes extra almost a distant memory , Mackail-Smith twisted and turned over by the East Stand touchline beating Chambers for pace and skill he drilled in cross to the six yard box , which fell just behind Vincelot .
The Frenchman simply tapped the ball to the onrushing Buckley, who smashed it low past Camp, into the bottom corner, to send the Albion fans, players and coaching staff wild with delight.
Poyet told Brighton & Hove news on Monday that Buckley would have to seize his next opportunity,and now it will be difficult for the boss to leave him out of the team.
Albion: Ankergren; Jara Reyes, Greer, Dunk, Taricco; Bridcutt, Navarro; Paynter, Barnes, Noone; Mackail-Smith. Subs: Brezovan El-Abd Vincelot, LuaLua, Buckley.
Nottingham Forest: Camp; Gunter, Morgan, Chambers, Cunningham; Anderson, Greening, Moussi, Majewski, McCleary; Tudgay. Subs Smith, McGugan, McGoldrick, Blackstock Maloney.
Referee: Darren Drysdale (Lincs)
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