Chris Hughton bemoans early goal as Brighton crumble to defeat at The Hawthorns

The Seagulls weren't at the races on Saturday as West Brom easily brushed them aside with two set piece goals.

Chris Hughton bemoans early goal as Brighton crumble to defeat at The Hawthorns
[Photo via Getty Images]

Brighton ​produced a poor performance at The Hawthorns as they were beaten 2-0 by West Brom​ to add further pressure on their bid to remain in the Premier League ​for another season. 

Embed from Getty Images

Early goal was the killer for us, says Hughton 

The Brighton boss pointed to the importance of West Brom's opening goal, with Jonny Evans heading home inside the opening five minutes to put the home side in the drivers seat. 

​"When you're coming here to a team and a club who's form has been indifferent, the last thing you want to do is lose a goal early and allow their crowd to get going," reflected Hughton. "You can see what they're like when they back the team."

​"We conceded two poor goals from set plays. We've been working on defending set pieces in training and yet we've conceded again so that's a concern because it put them in the ascendency and us on the back foot."

Embed from Getty Images

​Improvement needed in the final third as Brighton fail to produce the goods 

Brighton were bereft of any real attacking intent at The Hawthorns, with Glenn Murray often an isolated figure at the spearhead of their team. Izquierdo produced a few moments of promise when his quick feet allowed him to wriggle away from the defenders before Foster made an easy save. On the other flank, Knockaert was also left frustrated on multiple occassions, with a real lack of support coming his way when attempting to take on his opposite number.

​"Our work in the final third wasn't productive enough. In some games you don't get into the final third so much, but I thought we got into that area enough. We got enough crosses in the box."

The away side really should've bagged themselves at least one goal in the second-half when some intricate play down the left-hand side allowed substitute Sally March to wriggle free before passing it across the face of goal to Murray. Quickly closed down by the onrushing 'keeper, he showed good composure to retain possession and prod the ball out to Knockaert. Yet, the forward's shot ended high and wide for The Seagulls in a thoroughly miserable afternoon for Hughton's side.