Albion sunk by first-half goal against Lazio

Tomer Hemed. Picture by Phil Westlake
Tomer Hemed. Picture by Phil Westlake

Albion finished their pre-season campaign with a 1-0 defeat at home to Italian giants Lazio this afternoon.

Lazio, twice winners of Serie A, included seven full internationals in their starting line-up and won through Ravel Morrison’s 26th-minute goal.

Albion, who went into the game on the back of a 4-0 victory at Oxford in midweek, made a bright start and Glenn Murray had a header brilliantly saved by Lazio keeper Etrit Berisha on three minutes, before Beram Kayal sent a fizzing 25-yard strike just the wrong side of the post after six minutes.

Lazio threatened for the first time on 13 minutes when Filip Djordevic headed Dusan Basta’s cross just over from seven yards

There were encouraging signs for Brighton during the first half, with Murray linking well with Knockaert but Lazio went ahead on 26 minutes. Stefan Radu’s left-wing cross was only half-cleared and Morrison volleyed home low into the bottom corner from the edge of the penalty area.

Lazio almost added a second on 35 minutes when Ricardo Kishna showed some neat footwork before his shot was deflected just past the far post.

Albion midfielder Dale Stephens then deflected a Morrison free kick just over the bar, before Brighton almost levelled on 39 minutes when Knockaert volleyed Gaetan Bong’s left-wing cross a couple of inches wide.

Kayal had Brighton’s first chance of the second period on 56 minutes but blazed high and wide from 20 yards after a neat turn.

Albion went even closer seven minutes later when Knockaert’s corner fell at the feet of Murray who turned his man but then blazed over from close range.

Lazio were content to keep hold of the ball and try to attack Brighton on the counter in the second half, while a number of substitutions also disrupted the flow of the game as the visitors held on to win.

BRIGHTON: Stockdale, Bruno (White 81), Bong, Dunk, Stephens (Ince 45), Kayal, Hemed (Baldock 60), Knockaert (Manu 80), Murphy (Skalak 45), Murray, Rosenior. Subs: Maenpaa, Holla, Hunt, Adekugbe.

LAZIO: Berisha, Hoedt, de Vrij, Kishna, Basta, Djordjevic, Morrison, Lulic, Milinkovic, Onazi, Radu. Subs: Vargic, Gabarron, Cataldi, Lukaku, Lombardi, Dos Santos, Prce, Oikonomidis, Murgia, Germoni. Att: 9,780.

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