ALBION 0LAZIO 1
- Albion end pre-season with a defeat
- Ravel Morrison’s goals seals victory for Lazio
- The Seagulls wear their new home kit for the first time
- Brighton kick off their season in six days’ time away at Derby County
Brighton & Hove Albion ended pre-season with a narrow 1-0 defeat to Serie A side Lazio at the Amex.
Ravel Morrison’s 26th-minute strike gave the Rome side a slender victory, six days before Chris Hughton’s men begin their Sky Bet Championship campaign away at Derby County.
The deadlock could have been broken in just the third minute, as Anthony Knockaert’s free-kick was met by Glenn Murray, whose header forced a two-handed save from Lazio keeper Etrit Berisha.
Beram Kayal’s speculative drive from distance sailed just wide of Berisha’s left-hand post, as Albion continued their bright start.
Lazio had their first opportunity of the afternoon when Filip Djordjevic rose highest in the box, but his header went over the bar.
Tomer Hemed and Murray linked to set up Knockaert on the left, but the Eagles defence cleared the danger.
Despite Albion’s positive start, it was the visitors who took the lead thanks to former Manchester United and West Ham midfielder, Morrison.
Stefan Radu’s initial cross from the left-hand side was headed clear, but the ex-England under-21 international sweetly struck the loose ball beyond David Stockdale.
Morrison came close to scoring a second for Simone Inzaghi’s side, but Dale Stephens diverted his free-kick just inches over the crossbar.
Gaetan Bong then teed up Knockaert in a central position outside the box, but the Frenchman side-footed his effort wide.
Hughton made two changes at the break, bringing on Jiri Skalak and Rohan Ince for Jamie Murphy and Stephens respectively.
The team also changed shirts for the second half, sporting the new black away tops.
Kayal was the first to force the issue for Albion after the re-start, but another attempt from distance failed to trouble substitute keeper Ivan Vargic.
Knockaert played a low free-kick from the left-hand side, attempting to pick out substitute Sam Baldock, but the ball was diverted behind for a corner.
Murray came closer to levelling from the resulting corner, but blazed his close-range strike on the turn over the crossbar.
The loan signing from Bournemouth was involved in the thick of the action again after being played through on goal, but was forced to the byline and could not find another Albion player in the box.
Elvis Manu and under-23 centre-back Ben White then came on for Knockaert and Bruno for the final nine minutes.
Manu was picked out inside the box during the closing stages, but Lazio’s defence cleared the danger.
Skalak then found Liam Rosenior on the edge of the area with a free-kick, but the defender’s tame effort was blocked shortly before the final whistle blew.
ALBION: Stockdale; Rosenior, Bruno (c) (White 81), Dunk, Bong; Knockaert (Manu 81), Stephens (Ince 45), Kayal, Murphy (Skalak 45); Murray, Hemed (Baldock 60).
SUBS NOT USED: Maenpaa (GK), Hunt, Adekugbe, Holla.
1st £200 - 09061
2nd £50 -08426