Brighton & Hove Albion 1 Blackpool 1
Former Albion misfit Stephen Dobbie put a dent in Albion’s promotion hopes at the Amex this afternoon (Monday 21 April).
Dobbie equalised after Dale Stephens had put the Albion 1-0 in front with a well-taken goal in the first minute of the second half.
The Albion sit precariously in sixth place in the Championship on 66 points. But with Reading currently in ninth and not playing until tomorrow night, Albion fans will be well aware that a win for the Royals at home to Middlesbrough will see them nudge the Seagulls out of the play-off places.
The fact that the Albion have to play their last home game of the regular season against relegated candidates Yeovil appears to put them at a disadvantage as all their play-off rivals play the next day.
Although the Seagulls could still have a straight sudden death encounter with Nottingham Forest who currently occupy seventh place in the table.
Albion must surely rue some missed opportunities against Blackpool. Jesse Lingard had a good chance after neat flick from Stephens.
Then, Leo Ulloa headed over from a Stephens corner and Lingard spurned a half chance.
But Dobbie and also Isaiah Osbourne had clear chances to put Blackpool in front before the break.
The match exploded into life in the second half with Stephens’s early goal. But clever play between Andy Keogh and Dobbie saw the Scot, who had a torrid time in Brighton, fire into the top corner.
From then on Albion enjoyed more possession. Ulloa, Lingard and most notably Keith Andrews all had clear chances for Albion.
Just before the end Ulloa set up substitute Will Buckley who fired over from close range.
Albion have never fared well in Friday night games, not at Withdean or the Amex. But anything other than a win against Yeovil, who themselves need two wins and who have to overcome a goal difference deficit of 13 goals, and the season could effectively be over before May Day.