Seagulls sink stuttering Saints

Rickie Lambert's first red card of his career proved to be the game's turning point as Championship leaders Southampton lost 3-0 at Brighton.

Last Updated: 03/01/12 at 14:12

Sparrow: At the double for Brighton

Sparrow: At the double for Brighton

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Going into the game on the back of a first home defeat in more than a year - a 1-0 loss to Bristol City - Saints were desperate to get back to winning ways with Middlesbrough and West Ham breathing down their necks.

They looked on course to do that early on in the encounter but, after dominating the first half, were dealt a bitter blow when Lambert saw red in the 51st minute.

That proved the game's turning point as youngster Jake Forster-Caskey put Brighton ahead 15 minutes later, slotting home after Kelvin Davis denied Kazenga LuaLua.

Matt Sparrow wrapped up the points with a fine double, firing home a sensational 35-yard strike before adding another emphatic finish to ensure Gus Poyet's side's four-match losing run was brought to an end.

Boro's loss at Blackpool ensured Saints remained top, albeit on the same points as West Ham, who beat Coventry 1-0.

Despite heading into the clash on the back of a disappointing result last time out, Saints enjoyed the better of the opening exchanges as they dominated proceedings.

They almost took an early lead when Adam Lallana's effort was deflected goalwards by striker David Connolly, only for Peter Brezovan to make a fine save.

If manager Nigel Adkins was frustrated by that chance not being converted, he will have been even more dismayed midway through the opening period.

Connolly and Lallana were instrumental once more, linking up before the latter found the unmarked Guly Do Prado, who somehow managed to hit over from close range.

That did not stop Lallana, though, with the midfielder continuing to pose all sorts of problems as he was denied a goal when his effort appeared to cross the line, prior to Steve Cook's clearance.

Seemingly spurred on by the apparent injustice, Saints picked up where they left off at the start of the second half as a loud penalty appeal was turned down after Lambert went down under a challenge.

But their cause became somewhat more difficult soon after when Lambert - who has picked up just three bookings in the last two years - was dismissed after an altercation with Adam El-Abd.

The hosts seemed instantly spurred on by their one-man advantage and Saints were left thanking goalkeeper Davis after he impressively denied LuaLua.

However, he was left picking the ball out of the back of his net moments later as Forster-Caskey - on his full debut - slotted home after Davis had initially kept out LuaLua's stinging effort.

Sparrow's wonder goal then added to the hosts' joy and he added another by firing into the top corner from just inside the area.

The sides finished with 10 men apiece after Gordon Greer was sent off with three minutes to go for an off-the-ball incident, but it mattered little.

Football365 Facebook Fan Page

The Football365 fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

More Match Results

Monday, 25 May 2015
15:00
M'boro 0-2 Norwich Report
Saturday, 16 May 2015
12:15
Norwich 3-1 Ipswich Report
Friday, 15 May 2015
19:45
M'boro 3-0 Brentford Report
Saturday, 09 May 2015
12:15
Ipswich 1-1 Norwich Report
Friday, 08 May 2015
19:45
Brentford 1-2 M'boro Report
Saturday, 02 May 2015
12:15
Blackburn 3-2 Ipswich Report
Bolton 0-1 Birm'ham Report
Brentford 3-0 Wigan Report
Charlton 0-3 B'mouth Report
Derby 0-3 Reading Report

Footer 365

Rafael Benitez '99 per cent' certain to be next Real Madrid boss

Rafael Benitez is '99 per cent' certain to be Real Madrid boss, says Carlo Ancelotti's representative Ernesto Bronzetti.

Middlesbrough 0-2 Norwich: Cameron Jerome and Nathan Redmond strike as Canaries seal immediate return to Premier League

Norwich City gained promotion to the Premier League with a 2-0 victory over Middlesbrough in the Championship play-off final at Wembley.

Yaya Toure will stay at Manchester City, insists agent Dimitri Seluk

Yaya Toure will stay at Manchester City, according to his agent.

Mail Box

Reviewing Every PL Side's Season...

Time to half-heartedly agree or furiously reject some ratings. The mails also discuss the most complete striker ever in football, as well as Rodgers, Falcao and Bill O'Herilhy.

Can We Combine Danny And Theo?

The finishing of Theo Walcott and the hold-up play of Danny Welbeck would be just perfect. Plus, lots of Brendan Rodgers, some Big Sam and all hail Degsy...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company