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Premier League: Stoppage time penalty wins it for Brighton against Manchester United

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Brighton 1-0 Manchester United Premier League
Brighton players celebrate after Alexis MacAllister scored the winner in the match. | PHOTO: Sky Sports |
  • Brighton and Hove Albion hosted Manchester United in a Premier League clash on Thursday evening
  • United needed a win to bolster their hopes of finishing in the top four of the Premier League
  • A stoppage-time penalty from Alexis MacAllister sealed a much-needed trophy for Brighton

Alexis MacAllister scored a thrilling added-time penalty to propel Brighton to sixth place in the Premier League and shatter Manchester United Champions League chances.

After Luke Shaw was penalized for handball following VAR intervention, the Argentina World Cup winner emphatically dispatched the ball into the top left corner nine minutes after the regulation 90.

Albion’s 1-0 win at the Amex Stadium lifts them above Tottenham and Aston Villa, while United now glances over their shoulders at fifth-placed Liverpool.

Thanks to the dramatic late twist, the Seagulls are only four points behind Jurgen Klopp’s Reds with two games remaining.

Brighton’s victory partially atones for the FA Cup semi-final defeat at the hands of their opponents just 11 days ago, and also completes a league double against United.

READ: Manchester United takeover: bidders given offer deadline

The Seagulls also broke their club record for top-flight points with 55, three more than they had in the 42-game 1981-82 season.

Following a painful climax, Antony and Anthony Martial squandered golden opportunities for Manchester United, who still have work to do to reach European football’s premier club competition next season.

Prior to Mac Allister’s last-gasp goal, Kaoru Mitoma wasted the Seagulls’ finest chance of the game, slamming the ball into David De Gea’s head following a fast start.

Brighton 1-0 Manchester United Premier League

Brighton midfielder Alexis MacAllister celebrates after scoring an added-time penalty against Manchester United in a Premier League clash on Thursday, May 4 2023. | PHOTO: Sky Sports |

United goalkeeper David De Gea appeared bewildered by the unusual stop but was cleared to play after on-field treatment.

With European qualification on the line, players from both teams battled in a heated second half after Antony’s nasty challenge on Mac Allister prompted a huge brawl.

The bitter memories of Wembley lingered in the thoughts of the high-flying hosts as they travelled to Sussex.

The frenzied opening exchanges promised that there would be no repeat of the cagey 0-0 draw, with both sides blowing golden opportunities.

Within two minutes, Antony fired wide after Bruno Fernandes’ pass carved open Albion’s defence, before Mitoma intercepted an under-hit Victor Lindelof pass and raced clear, only to thump his effort into De Gea’s face with Julio Enciso awaiting a tap-in.

READ: Alexis Mac Allister set to stay in the Premier League despite leaving Brighton

Brighton manager Roberto De Zerbi battled an illness that forced him to postpone his pre-match press conference to take his spot on the sidelines.

When Mitoma went to the ground after minimal contact from Aaron Wan-Bissaka’s outstretched leg, the Italian was his usual animated self and passionately appealed for a penalty.

United, who were blasted 4-0 here last May, remained dangerous on the counter-attack and caused regular problems for the home defence while creating the greatest first-half opportunities.

Erik Ten Hag’s side had Casemiro’s head barely past, while Brighton keeper Jason Steele made great stops to deny low efforts from Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial.

As ongoing protests against their club’s ownership continue, travelling fans unveiled a ‘Glazers out’ banner ahead of kickoff.

The sold-out away end, on the other hand, would have taken plenty of encouragement from the first 45 minutes.

Rashford slipped comfortably inside the Brighton box shortly after the restart, before the hosts had a stretch of possession, albeit with little initial creation.

Casemiro, who had been booked earlier for scything down Mac Allister, avoided a second yellow card in the 65th minute for a foul on the same player.

When Mitoma went down in the penalty area for the second time, home fans became even more enraged, and tempers flared when Brazilian Antony chopped down fellow South American Mac Allister, resulting in a booking for the United player and Brighton captain Lewis Dunk.

Casemiro drilled over, while Seagulls substitute Solly March, who missed the decisive spot-kick at Wembley, lashed wide and De Gea superbly denied Moises Caicedo as an enthralling affair looked set to end all square.

But Shaw inexplicably handled a corner and, after referee Andre Marriner consulted the pitchside monitor and pointed to the spot, Mac Allister thumped home.

Nathan Sialah is a journalist by profession with interest in politics, sports, cryptocurrency and human interests with 5 years experience in Radio and Digital Journalism. This has helped Sialah develop a responsible approach to any task he undertakes or any situation that he is presented with.

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