Brighton 2-0 Norwich: Leandro Trossard steals show as Seagulls sink Canaries
Report and highlights as Brighton beat Norwich at the Amex Stadium
By Frederick Clayton
Last Updated: 02/11/19 6:30pm
Brighton made it three home wins in a row to go eighth in the Premier League table with a 2-0 victory over a lacklustre Norwich.
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- How the teams lined up
The Seagulls were full of confidence from the off and deserved a first-half lead but for their careless finishing, while Norwich almost stole an early goal against the run of play when Marco Stiepermann hit the bar.
But the Canaries' resistance was broken by game-changing substitute Leandro Trossard who poked home the opener shortly after his introduction, before his whipped free-kick gave Shane Duffy a tap-in for 2-0.
Brighton went in search for a third and barely gave Norwich a chance as they held on to fly up the league.
Home Team: Ryan (7), Montoya (8), Webster (5), Dunk (7), Stephens (6), Burn (7), Propper (7), Alzate (6), Gross (6), Connolly (7), Maupay (5)
Subs: Trossard (8), Duffy (7), Schelotto (n/a)
Away Team: Krul (7), Aarons (6), Godfrey (7), Lewis (5), Trybull (6), Tettey (6), Buendia (5), McLean (5), Steipermann (6), Hernandez (6), Pukki (4)
Subs: Cantwell (n/a), Drmic (5), Srbeny (5)
Man of the match: Leondro Trossard
How super-sub Trossard won it for Brighton
Despite Brighton's early dominance, the first real chance fell to the Canaries as Stierpermann's wonderful lob smacked the bar to the relief of Brighton 'keeper Mathew Ryan.
The hosts seemed untroubled and continued to attack down the right through the excellent Aaron Connolly who had the better of left-back Jamal Lewis all afternoon. And it was his through-balls and whipped crosses that gave a number of chances to a wasteful Neal Maupay who missed two gilt-edged chances in stoppage-time.
Norwich's Hernandez made the side despite time spent on the hospital ward with his expecting partner. Trybull and Stiepermann also returned to the team. Amadou, Leitner and Cantwell made way for Norwich. Brighton were unchanged from the side that beat Everton last time out.
Brighton were unlucky not to take a lead into the break, and even more unlucky to lose summer signing Adam Webster to an ankle injury after he fell awkwardly blocking a Teemu Pukki effort.
And it took substitute Trossard to break the deadlock who once again put in a match-winning performance for the Seagulls, scoring less than ten minutes after his introduction at the near-post as he diverted Martin Montoya's cross into the net.
He then turned provider after his inch-perfect free-kick floated over Canaries heads to land perfectly at the outstretched foot of fellow substitute Duffy who scored a rare goal with his feet giving a rapturous home support a collector's item along with all three points.
What the managers said
Brighton boss Graham Potter: "We were playing against a team that carries a threat. Norwich are always in the match so you have to be disciplined defensively and I thought we were. To keep a clean sheet and score two goals, it's nice to have all three points.
"We attack well, and I thought we played with real courage, intelligence at times, and obviously it's important to get the goal. You need that chance to go in and I'm really pleased for our substitutes.
"That's what you want as a coach."
Norwich boss Daniel Farke: "We won't raise the white flag. We're not too far away from getting good results, it's about fine margins.
"It doesn't help to complain about injuries, VAR or hitting the crossbar. We have to show a strong mentality now.
"It's good to have Trybull and Hernandez back and to gain some minutes. They're 100 per cent back in business now. We will be even more competitive when the centre-backs return."
Analysis: Match-management at its finest from Brighton
Sky Sports' Frederick Clayton
Brighton play football that fans can get behind and even top teams could learn from their aggression after scoring goals.
So often we see sides drop back after taking the lead and absorbing the inevitable pressure that follows, but Brighton did things differently and beat their own intensity levels after scoring, giving Norwich no chance to bounce back.
This was game management at its finest. The Seagulls were patient and refused to be frustrated by the faltering Neal Maupay or Aaron Connolly's wayward efforts. They waited and were rewarded. The goal was on its way and it took another good managerial decision, the introduction of Trossard, to push Brighton over the line and see out three comfortable points in the end.
Man of the match: Leandro Trossard
Norwich looked like they could hold on for a point or even snatch a win against the faltering finishing of Neal Maupay, but the introduction of Trossard changed the game. He played both finisher and provider to give Brighton the win.
- Brighton and Hove Albion have won back-to-back home league games against Norwich without conceding, having lost four on the bounce against the Canaries on home soil prior to this run.
- Brighton have won three consecutive home games for only the second time in the Premier League (also in March 2018 under Chris Hughton).
- Norwich's seven points from 11 games this season in their joint-lowest points tally at this stage of a top-flight season (also 7 points after 11 games in 2004-05 - considering 3 pts for a win).
Brighton face a trip to Old Trafford next Sunday as they take on Manchester United, while Norwich host fellow strugglers Watford on Friday Night Football, which live on Sky Sports Football and Sky Sports Main Event.