Brighton fell to a 2-1 defeat at home to Chelsea as goals from Eden Hazard and Pedro were enough for the away side to secure three points.
Solly March’s 66th-minute goal was not enough to inspire a late comeback despite some pressure from the Seagulls in the last knockings of the game.
The result moved Chelsea back into touching distance of third-placed Tottenham Hotspur.
Brighton’s sub-standard first half performance cost them at least a point
A poor first half from Chris Hughton’s team ultimately left them with too much to do in the second half against a very talented Chelsea team.
After Pedro’s 17th-minute goal and Eden Hazard’s 33rd-minute goal coming from a loose Leon Balogun pass, the Seagulls were unable to peg the visitors back.
Despite a valiant second-half performance, it was too little too late for Brighton as they gave their all to rescue a point.
Brighton needed pace from the off
The Seagulls could’ve done with the pace from the bench to help push for a late equaliser.
Substitute trio Florin Andone, Jurgen Locadia and the attack-minded midfielder Yves Bissouma could've been an option from the start as the in-form Glenn Murray gave Chelsea no problems, and the style of the game didn’t really suit him.
The game needed switching up but the changes from Chris Hughton came as too little too late.
Positives to take from a close game with a top-six side
Brighton were a lot better than last season’s 4-0 home defeat to the same side, which is a huge positive as it was one of their worst performances of the whole season.
The Seagulls can take a lot of positives from the second half as they could quite easily have snatched a draw if they produced that little bit of quality.
Brazilian full-back Bernardo produced another man of the match display and is proving why the Seagulls spent £9m on the 23-year-old. Gaetan Bong will certainly struggle to get back into the side if his form continues.
Brighton now sit 13th with 21 points, whereas Chelsea sit in 4th with 37 points.
Brighton travel to Bournemouth next Saturday looking to bounce back and Chelsea host Claude Puel’s Leicester at Stamford Bridge.