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MATCH REPORT

PUBLISHED
21:52 1st April 2014
By  Adam Tighe

David Rodriguez

Report: Blackburn 3 Albion 3

Dale Stephens’s 88th minute header ensured Brighton & Hove Albion left Ewood Park with a point in an enthralling 3-3 draw.

Jordan Rhodes’s late penalty look set to consign Albion to a fourth loss in a row until the former Charlton Athletic man popped up to earn a share of the spoils. 

After a tepid opening the Seagulls ended their goal drought as Jesse Lingard slipped in David Rodriguez and the Spaniard fired home with a low near-post finish.

Rovers were not behind for long though as Tom Cairney’s low free-kick was diverted past Tomasz Kuszczak to level the scores. 

Stephen Ward then came to Brighton’s rescue with an excellent defensive header to deny David Dunn as the hosts started to impose themselves on the game.

Gary Bowyer’s side turned the game around on 41 minutes when Tommy Spurr broke down the left and his low cross was turned home by the arriving Cairney.

Rovers started the second half on top and almost extended their advantage in a fortuitous manner as former Albion loanee Craig Conway’s cross was flicked onto the frame of the goal by Bruno.

Conway was the architect of Blackburn’s next sight of goal as he forced Kuszczak into a tremendous one-handed save low to his left.

Solly March entered the fray as Albion went 4-4-2 in search of an equaliser, and the youngster almost helped bring the scores level as his low cross flashed across the face of Paul Robinson’s goal.

Robinson was then called into action as he made a fantastic save to deny March but the former England international was helpless to deny Brighton’s leveller. Substitute Kazenga LuaLua’s near-post corner was met by captain Greer, who flicked home against his former club to make it 2-2.

But the skipper’s joy was short lived as he was adjudged to have fouled Rhodes in the box and the striker dusted himself down and rolled home the resulting penalty.

It looked as if Rovers had stolen the points but in a remarkable twist Oscar Garcia’s men charged straight up the other end to make it 3-3 within 90 seconds. Lingard’s floated cross was expertly guided home by the head of Stephens for his first Seagulls goal, keeping the side within touching distance of the play-offs.

    QUICK FACTS

    32,425 paving slabs were used to create the exterior concourse at the American Express Community Stadium.