Match Details: 10/10/2009
Yeovil Town 2-2 Brighton and Hove Albion
Coca Cola League One
Yeovil Goals: Scott Murray (45), Scott Murray (82)
Yeovil Line-Up: 1. Alex McCarthy, 2. Craig Alcock, 3. Nathan Jones, 6. Terrell Forbes, 7. George O'Callaghan, 9. Sam Williams, 10. Gavin Tomlin, 11. Andy Welsh, 16. Scott Murray, 18. Andy Lindegaard, 21. Jean-Paul Kamudimba Kalala,
Subs: 8. Keiran Murtagh, 15. Richard Martin, 23. Danny Hutchins, 26. Jonathan Obika, 28. Nathan Smith, 32. Andre McCollin, 34. Robert Clowes
Substitutes Used: Jonathan Obika for Gavin Tomlin (58 mins)
Bookings: Sam Williams (Ungentlemanly Conduct, 41), Jean-Paul Kamudimba Kalala (Foul, 67), Jonathan Obika (Foul, 90)
Yeovil Town came from two goals down to gain a home point against Brighton and Hove Albion at Huish Park this afternoon. In a pulsating match that more resembled a cup tie than a league match, six bookings and four goals in a see-saw of a match saw Brighton take the lead through an early Andrew Crofts strike and a second from Liam Dickinson. But former Bristol City winger Scott Murray put Yeovil back in it just before the half time break with his 100th career goal, and he became the Huish Park hero when he slotted home a pressure penalty eight minutes from time for his 101st after Terrell Forbes was judged to have been fouled by Jake Wright.
The Glovers went into the match without a large number of players available due to international duty, although Alex McCarthy had been given permission to come back from Coventry on Friday afternoon before the England Under-21s match, thus ensuring that he got a good night's sleep before the game. Craig Alcock started as a centre-back, with manager Terry Skiverton refusing to revive his playing career, despite the Glovers being down to just one recognised centre-back. Meanwhile Sam Williams returned as a lone striker to replace Craig Davies.
The Glovers did not exactly get off to a good start, with Brighton well on top and grabbing an early goal. A deep ball into the box was only half cleared by Craig Alcock, and from the edge of the box, former Gillingham midfielder Andrew Crofts drilled the ball home to give the Seagulls an early lead. Brighton were dominant in the early exchanges, with Nicky Forster sending a long range drive just over the crossbar, with McCarthy struggling to get near the attempt.
Yeovil gradually came back into the game, with Scott Murray in particular challenging Brighton youngster Jake Wright frequently on the right flank although without too much end product once the ball got into the Seagulls box. Brighton had appeals for a penalty turned down when Liam Dickinson took a tumble in the box under pressure from Jean-Paul Kalala. It looked a worthy shout, but he won't have helped his case by taking a number of more dubious falls earlier in the game - sometimes players dig their own graves and thus introduce doubt into referees minds. That said, referee Oliver Langford was not stamping his authority on the game with some odd decisions throughout the half.
The Glovers got their first shot on target 10 minutes before the break when Scott Murray put in a ball to Andy Welsh, but his shot was relatively comfortable for Michel Kuipers to save. It had been a half of football to forget for the Glovers but they will have felt aggrieved by the way that they fell a further goal behind. Five minutes from half time, Brighton doubled their lead through controversial means, after referee Langford judged that Sam Williams had taken a dive after Tommy Elphick had challenged him for the ball. Williams got booked and Brighton got a free kick which Michel Kuipers took, and the long ball into the box ensured that Liam Dickinson was on hand to make it 2-0.
Just as the game entered injury time though, the Glovers finally got a foothold in the game. Sam Williams was involved in the build-up when he took a free kick on the halfway line but Andy Welsh slipped the ball back to Williams who threaded it again to Scott Murray and he was on hand to slot the ball home for his first goal for the Glovers and for his 100th goal in his Football League career. Perfect timing to send Yeovil in at half time with their tails slightly up.
The Glovers made a bright start to the second half, albeit without creating too many clear cut chances. Liam Dickinson went close for the opposition though, sliding in and just missing a ball to the far post. Jonathan Obika came on as a substitute to freshen things up, with Yeovil switching to a more conventional 4-4-2, with Obika joining Williams up front, and his header from an Andy Welsh corner went wide of the mark when it probably should have hit the target. The game was getting very stretched, with the Glovers pushing numbers up for an equaliser, and Nicky Forster almost caught the Yeovil defence short when he broke and shot wide of the target.
The 4-4-2 formation became 4-3-3 as Scott Murray joined Obika and Williams up front and Yeovil took more and more gambles to get back into the game. Brighton tried to slow down the tempo with their throw-ins and goal kicks becoming painfully slow and the clock frustratingly ticked down. But with eight minutes remaining, Jake Wright, who had only just been booked for a foul on Scott Murray, was judged to have fouled Terrell Forbes, and up stepped Scott Murray to net his second goal of the game by firing straight down the middle.
With the scoreline 2-2, neither team seemed sure whether to attack or to defend, although the Glovers finished the more likely team to snatch a late winner. Some late bookings showed how fiercely contested the game was and although Yeovil could have grabbed all three points, they should be happy to have come out of the game with a point, having been two goals down earlier in the game. Given how many players were missing today, it was an impressive result and one that shows that the Glovers have got a bit more depth in their squad than they had this time last year. Scott Murray's performance in particular was a huge plus as he easily had his best game in a green and white shirt. The result lifts Yeovil one place into 17th, with Brighton still 4th from bottom, and with next week's opponents Carlisle United losing at home, they will go into their next match with great optimism.
Link: 2009-10 Latest League One Table.
Final Score: Yeovil Town 2 Brighton and Hove Albion 2.
Scorers: Andrew Crofts (0-1, 6 mins), Liam Dickinson (0-2, 41 mins), Scott Murray (1-2, 45 mins), Scott Murray (2-2, 82 mins)
Yeovil Town: (4-2-3-1/4-4-1-1)
1. Alex McCarthy
18. Andy Lindegaard 6. Terrell Forbes 2. Craig Alcock 3. Nathan Jones
21. Jean-Paul Kalala 7. George O'Callaghan
16. Scott Murray 10. Gavin Tomlin 11. Andrew Welsh
9. Sam Williams
15. Richard Martin (GK) 8. Keiran Murtagh 23. Danny Hutchins 26. Jonathan Obika (58 mins for Gavin Tomlin) 28. Nathan Smith 32. Andre McCollin 34. Rob Clowes
Brighton and Hove Albion (4-4-2):
1. Michel Kuipers
27. Gavin Hoyte 12. James Tunnicliffe 4. Tommy Elphick 5. Jake Wright
19. Arron Davies 20. Andrew Crofts 18. Gary Dicker 26. Elliott Bennett
9. Nicky Forster 10. Liam Dickinson
22. Graeme Smith (GK) 3. Jim McNulty 7. Dean Cox (73 mins for Arron Davies) 15. Gary Hart 17. Glenn Murray (58 mins for Liam Dickinson) 21. Matt Thornhill 23. Adam Virgo.
Yeovil Bookings: Sam Williams (diving, 41 mins), Jean-Paul Kalala (foul, 67 mins), Jonathan Obika (foul, 90 mins)
Brighton Bookings: Nicky Forster (dissent, 55 mins), Jake Wright (foul, 80 mins), Glenn Murray (foul, 90 mins)
Referee: Oliver Langford (West Midlands). Assistants: Andrew Bennett (Devon) and Neil Radford (Worcestershire). Fourth Official: Kevin Johnson (Somerset).