Chelsea haven’t lost against Brighton & Hove Albion since their first meeting in January 1993, but while that record continues, they will be disappointed as the 1-1 sees them slip further from Manchester City atop the Premier League (PL) table.
Both sides looked to show an attacking threat without managing to work either goalkeeper too much in the early stages. Still, Robert Sánchez was fortunate after flapping at a cross in the 17th minute, with César Azpilicueta’s shot being deflected onto the post. There was a blow for Chelsea, as Reece James was forced off through injury before the half-hour mark. Yet, that was immediately followed by joy as Romelu Lukaku added to the goal on his return to action against Aston Villa by heading in Mason Mount’s corner delivery.
The ‘Seagulls’ responded well to going behind, with Adam Lallana forcing a save from Édouard Mendy, while Tariq Lamptey saw his attempt sail marginally over the crossbar and Alexis Mac Allister’s effort from range was held shortly before HT. Having struggled with injury for a large period of the first half, Andreas Christensen also made way during the break. There were further scares for the ‘Blues’, as Jakub Moder’s flick kissed the crossbar on its way over before Mendy’s clearance was blocked by Neal Maupay.
Despite Brighton’s pressure, Callum Hudson-Odoi had the goal at his mercy in the 56th minute only to attempt a pass that was cut out. The ‘Blues’ were almost punished within seconds as Maupay’s shot flashed agonisingly past the post. The Frenchman had another opportunity soon after with Mac Allister having drawn Mendy out of his goal, but was denied by Antonio Rüdiger’s block. Lallana then smashed his shot over the crossbar from a promising position.
Mount, Lukaku and N’Golo Kanté all had late shots blocked, which proved costly when Danny Welbeck rose to head in Marc Cucurella’s cross in injury time, seeing Brighton salvage a point after the 85th minute for the fourth time this season. Meanwhile, Chelsea have now drawn four of their last five PL matches at home.