One stunning goal and one very poor goal consigned Posh to their second defeat in three away matches.
For long periods of this match, there was very little difference between these two sides. Unfortunately for Posh, since their 7-1 demolishing of Ipswich Town, they now look toothless in attack and lack the cutting edge needed to turn their possession into goals.
With Craig Mackail-Smith meeting Posh for the first time since his summer move to the Seagulls, Posh knew they had to be on their toes to stop CMS. CMS received an excellent reception from the travelling Posh fans but found little change out of the Posh back four. In truth, he only really had one chance in the game which he headed wide of the goal.
In a game where both teams liked to get the ball on the deck and pass the ball around rather than hoofing the ball, it was a pleasure to watch. I wish I’d had my eyes shut though when Posh keeper, on the 10 minute mark, received the ball and with time and space, but decided to kick the ball to Craig NOONE who ran straight at the Posh back line and with Jones leaving a gaping hole to the left of his goal, allowed Noone to easily slot the ball into the net, albeit from 20 yards. It was a very poor goal to concede by Posh and another one attributed to keeper Jones. I for one, would gladly see Joe Lewis return to the starting line-up in place of Jones for the next match, should he still be a Posh player.
Posh had more of the possession, as they seem to have in most of their games this season, but during the first half, they were mainly restricted to long range efforts. McCann especially dangerous forcing Ankergren to make a couple of good saves.
Posh suffered a major set-back on 36 minutes when the influential George Boyd went off injured and was replaced by Ryan Tunnicliffe.
Half-time: Brighton 1 – 0 Posh
Posh kicked off the second half and nearly drew level within the space of 10 seconds. Paul Taylor ran through the spine of the Brighton team before feeding Lee Frecklington who placed his shot past Ankergren but agonisingly saw a defender kick it off the line. That was the best it got for Posh as their intricate passing seemed to get no further than the edge of the penalty area.
Brighton created very little and the stats of only 3 shots on the Posh goal probably says it all. They are good defensively and were all prepared to battle hard, which at times put Posh to shame and showed Posh what they are lacking at times.
Of those 3 shots on target, one was absolutely stunning. A freekick awarded for a needless challenge by Tommy Rowe allowed Brightons latest capture, Ryan HARLEY, to put Brighton 2 up with a quality shot right in the top corner of the net. There is nothing the keeper could’ve done though.
Rowe nearly made amends for giving away the freekick when a clever pass from substitute Ball played him in on 84 minutes but he put his shot wide of the goal. It is times like this that Posh need to be more clinical if they are going to achieve their goal of retaining their Championship status.
As the game wore on, Posh continued to battle for a breakthrough but to no avail.
Criag Mackail-Smith was substituted in added time to a standing ovation from the Posh following.
Full-time: Brighton 2 – 0 Posh
Brighton: Ankergren, Greer, Dunk, Calderon, Painter, Noone (Navarro 71), Harley (Sparrow 71), Dicker, Bridcutt, Barnes, Mackail-Smith (LuaLua 90+2)
Subs (unused): Brezovan, Cook
Peterborough United: Jones, Little, Bennett, Zakuani, Alcock, McCann, Rowe, Frecklington, Tomlin, Boyd (Tunnicliffe 36), Taylor (Ball 60)
Subs (unused): Lewis, Wootton, Gordon
Goals: Noone (10), Harley (64)
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