Sky Bet Championship: Huddersfield frustrate Brighton in 0-0 draw at Amex Stadium
Brighton were denied victory by a stubborn defensive display from Huddersfield in a 0-0 draw at the Amex Stadium.
Last Updated: 21/12/13 5:58pm
Brighton were denied a third successive victory by a stubborn defensive display from Huddersfield as the teams played out a 0-0 draw at the Amex Stadium.
Brighton's Ashley Barnes carried the main threat throughout the game but could not find a way past Alex Smithies and his defence, wasting two good chances after half-time.
Huddersfield should have had a first-half penalty when Adam El-Abd fouled James Vaughan but they offered little else.
Huddersfield defender Anthony Gerrard made a vital block early on to thwart Barnes, who had got into a dangerous position following a cross-field ball by Spaniard Bruno Saltor.
Brighton keeper Peter Brezovan, holding onto his place ahead of fit-again first choice Tomasz Kuszczak, had to swoop low to save a goal-bound left-foot shot from Adam Hammill after six minutes.
Huddersfield, thrashed 4-1 on their previous visit to the Amex, came under pressure when Bruno won a corner and a Barnes header at the near post was scrambled away by Martin Paterson.
The Terriers should have had a penalty midway through the half, however, when defender El-Abd appeared to push over fit-again striker Vaughan but referee James Adcock waved away the appeal.
Vaughan later set up Oliver Norwood but his 20-yard effort failed to trouble Brezovan and flew over the bar.
Brighton's Spanish midfielder David Lopez required treatment after a late tackle from Paul Dixon which resulted in a booking for the Huddersfield defender.
Ever-present Huddersfield keeper Smithies was relieved when an inswinging corner from Lopez got caught in the wind and drifted inches wide of the far post.
Smithies confidently smothered the ball shortly before the break with Barnes threatening to get on the end of a deep cross from Bruno.
Brighton came close to breaking the deadlock on 50 minutes when, from a cross by Lopez, a Kemy Agustien diving header was parried by Smithies and Barnes put the rebound over.
Barnes was wasteful again eight minutes later when he headed wide at the far post after Lopez had provided the perfect cross.
Brighton head coach Oscar Garcia made his first change by bringing on Kazenga LuaLua for Agustien and the former Newcastle flyer quickly made his presence felt.
Smithies made another crucial claim when former England international defender Matthew Upson threatened to connect with a teasing Lopez cross.
Will Buckley should have done better for the Seagulls when he took the ball on too far after being set free in the area by Lopez.
Brighton, now beaten only one in their last 10 games, continued to apply late pressure and LuaLua was denied by Smithies after getting the better of two defenders.