West Ham 2-2 Brighton | Super Subs rescue point for Hammers against Seagulls

West Ham picked up their first ever Premier League point against Brighton as they came from 2-0 down to draw 2-2 against Chris Houghton’s men at the London Stadium.

Despite losses to Watford and Burnley, December had still been a very productive month for the Hammers- only league leaders Liverpool took more points than them in that period, and the 15 points Manuel Pellegrini’s men picked up was more than the 12 they had in the previous four months put together.

The Hammers were looking for a win to start off the New Year against Brighton, a team that had won all three Premier League clashes between the two sides before this clash. Pellegrini made three chances to his side- bringing in Pablo Zabaleta in defence, Pedro Obiang in the middle of the park, and Andy Carroll upfront to partner Marko Arnautovic. New signing Samir Nasri was on the bench.

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West Ham have tended to be poor starters quite often this season, and this game was no exception. The 59,870 crowd- the home side’s biggest of the campaign so far, were treated to a cagey first 45 minutes. Brighton, who have struggled on the road this season, were happy to play defensively, and the Hammers struggled to break them down. The two best “chances” before the interval, if one could call them that, fell to Felipe Anderson, who shot straight at Button, and another to Arnautovic, who tried to bend in one, only to be denied by Button.

Manuel Pellegrini said after the match that he was aware of the threat that was being posed at set pieces, and would’ve been very disappointed with the manner in which the goals conceded. Both came from corners, and Brighton came up with two fine finishes to take a 2-0 lead in a matter of minutes. There were only 125 seconds between the two BHAFC goals- the first scored by Dale Stephens (his first ever Premier League goal for Brighton), and the other by Shane Duffy, although one had to say Issa Diop was at fault for the latter’s goal.

Pellegrini had replaced Carroll with Lucas Perez at half time, and sent on two more subs on the hour mark, with Mark Noble and Michail Antonio coming in for Obiang and Snodgrass respectively. The two new arrivals made an instant impact. Noble provided the assist for Arnautovic’s first goal, with the Austrian showing his strength to brush off Shane Duffy before producing a good finish.

Noble was again in action for the second goal, with his pass finding Antonio, who powered his way into the box and found Arnautovic, who again made no mistake. In a matter of 131 seconds, West Ham were back level, and Brighton’s lead had disappeared in the flicker of an eye.

West Ham had a couple of good half chances afterwards, but Brighton held on for a point.

West Ham 2 (Arnautovic*2) drew with Brighton 2 (Stephens, Duffy)

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