Bournemouth 2-0 Brighton: Brooks strikes twice as Cherries beat 10-man Seagulls
Report and highlights as Bournemouth prevail in south-coast clash
By Kalika Mehta
Last Updated: 22/12/18 8:36pm
David Brooks struck twice as Bournemouth eased to a 2-0 victory over 10-man Brighton at the Vitality Stadium.
The midfielder gave the hosts the lead after 21 minutes when he drove through the heart of the visitors' defence before unleashing a low shot past Albion 'keeper Mat Ryan into the left-hand corner of the goal.
Bournemouth goalkeeper Asmir Begovic was regularly called into action in the first half and pulled off brilliant saves from Yves Bissouma and Lewis Dunk to keep the home side in the lead going into the break.
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The Cherries posed the bigger threat in the second 45 and, after Seagulls captain Dunk had been giving his marching order after picking up a second yellow card (73), a lovely, flighted header from Brooks (77) ensured the home crowd had plenty to cheer about.
Both sides took their time to settle into the match and it was Brighton who had the first chance of note when Bissouma made space for himself inside the box before unleashing a low strike to the left, which forced Begovic to palm the ball away to safety.
The hosts counter-punched and Callum Wilson's well-placed header just lacked enough pace to test Ryan but, less than five minutes later, Brighton's defenders were guilty of allowing Brooks too much space as he gave Bournemouth the lead.
Chris Hughton's side pressed for an equaliser, with Bissouma and Florin Andone continuing to look dangerous as they both went close, while Begovic was again called into action in spectacular fashion just before the break to divert Dunk's goal-bound header at full stretch.
Having spent much of the second half of the first 45 minutes under the cosh, Bournemouth posed more of an attacking threat following the break with Junior Stanislas, Charlie Daniels and Brooks all causing problems.
Bournemouth: Begovic (8), Francis (7), Cook (7), Ake (6), Daniels (7), Wilson (6), Lerma (6), Surman (6), Stanislas (7), Brooks (8), King (7).
Subs: Fraser (6), Mousset (N/A), Ibe (N/A)
Brighton: Ryan (5), Dunk (4), Bissouma (6), Locadia (5), Andone (6), Gross (4), Balogun (5), March (4), Montoya (5), Propper (5), Bernardo (6)
Subs: Knockaert (5), Bong (5), Murray (N/A)
Man of the match: David Brooks
Brighton's abundance of crosses from the right were disappointingly poor as they failed to test Begovic - Solly March and Pascal Gross, in particular, guilty of not utilising the time and space being given to them.
Dunk earned a tame first caution when the defender and Bissouma combined to stop Brooks from pressing forward and a more cynical clip on Stanislas saw him pick up his second yellow with just over 15 minutes left.
Eddie Howe's injury-ravaged side included Simon Francis after the Cherries captain recovered from the knock he suffered during the midweek League Cup match against Chelsea. Jefferson Lerma also returned in midfield, as Ryan Fraser dropped to the bench. Meanwhile, Chris Hughton made three changes from the Seagulls side that was beaten by Chelsea last time out in the Premier League. Florin Andone, Jurgen Locadia and Yves Bissouma all started having come on as substitutes in the previous league outing.
Just four minutes later, the home side took advantage when substitute Ryan Fraser floated a lovely ball into the box and Brooks nodded the ball up and over Ryan to settle the contest into style.
The victory was just the second in Bournemouth's last eight Premier League matches, while Brighton slipped to their third consecutive league loss.
- Bournemouth registered a clean sheet in the Premier League for the first time in eight games, since a 3-0 win against Fulham in October.
- Brighton have lost three consecutive Premier League games within a single season for the first time since December 2017.
- Bournemouth have seen their opponents pick up five red cards this season in the Premier League, more than any other side.
- Brighton boss Chris Hughton has never beaten Bournemouth in his managerial career, losing four and drawing once (all while in charge of Brighton).
- Bournemouth's David Brooks has netted five goals in his last 11 league appearances, after managing just three in his previous 35.
- Josh King has been directly involved in 44 Premier League goals for Bournemouth (35 goals, 9 assists), 10 more than any other player (Callum Wilson on 34).
- Bournemouth's Jefferson Lerma picked up a divisional-high eighth booking of the season in the Premier League, with only Harry Arter in 2016/17 accruing more in a single campaign in the competition for the Cherries (11).
- Only Eden Hazard (9) has registered more assists in the Premier League this season than Bournemouth's Ryan Fraser (8).
Man of the match - David Brooks
The 21-year-old playmaker was in scintillating form on Saturday afternoon, creating numerous chances. Brooks danced past the opposition's defence to give the home side the lead with a powerful strike and his guided header for his, and Bournemouth's, second goal was equally exquisite.
Pundit's verdict - Charlie Nicholas
It wasn't comfortable for Bournemouth. In spells, I thought Brighton could have got a draw , but it was too fabulous goals from David Brooks. He is a very impressive young player.
It was harsh on Brighton because when they went down to 10 men, Dunk's first yellow card was harsh but the second one wasn't. It sounds comfortable, but Bournemouth had to work a little bit harder and scored two excellent goals.
Bournemouth will now travel to Wembley for their Boxing Day clash with Tottenham, while Brighton host Arsenal, live on Sky Sports Premier League, later on December 26.