Gross on target as Brighton draw at Norwich

Pascal Gross. Picture by Phil Westlake (PW Sporting Photography)
Pascal Gross. Picture by Phil Westlake (PW Sporting Photography)

Albion remain unbeaten in pre-season after a 1-1 draw at Championship side Norwich this afternoon.

The Seagulls are preparing for their first ever Premier League campaign and had won all three of their previous friendlies without conceding a goal.

Pascal Gross gave Brighton the lead at Carrow Road with a glancing header on 20 minutes but Norwich equalised three minutes before half-time through Marley Watkins' thunderbolt.

The Canaries almost snatched the win late on but substitute Nelson Oliveira's superb 25-yard strike cannoned back off a post.

The hosts made the brighter start and Shane Duffy blocked shots from James Maddison and Cameron Jerome in quick succession, before Harrison Reed fizzed a low effort just wide on 12 minutes.

Mario Vrancic's ambitious 45-yard lob then flew on to the roof of the goal but Albion started to grow into the game as the half went on.

Solly March and Gross linked up well, with the latter's cross just too strong for Jamie Murphy, before Brighton went ahead on 20 minutes. March fed Bruno down the right and his cross was glanced home by Gross at the near post.

The Canaries continued to look lively going forward and Albion keeper Mathew Ryan got down well to keep out Reed's skidding effort on 41 minutes.

Norwich were level within a minute, though, as Watkins was given too much space 20 yards from goal and rifled a blistering shot into the roof of the goal, giving Ryan no chance. The goal ended Albion's 312-minute run of not conceding in pre-season.

Brighton made a double change at the break as Izzy Brown and Gaetan Bong replaced Gross and Murphy, which saw Markus Suttner move up to left midfield from left-back.

The former Austrian international almost got on the scoresheet within two minutes of the second half but drove a left-footed shot a couple of yards wide from 22 yards.

Norwich had penalty appeals waved away when James Husband went down under a March challenge and Watkins nodded wide from a Vrancic corner just past the hour mark.

Chances continued to be at a premium in the second period as both sides made changes. Glenn Murray and Brown both headed inviting Suttner crosses wide, before Norwich almost went ahead but Oliveira's stunning strike from 25 yards came back off a post with Ryan beaten seven minutes from time.

ALBION: Ryan; Bruno (Rosenior 71), Dunk, Duffy (Goldson 77), Suttner; March (Skalak 82), Stephens, Kayal (Sidwell 60), Murphy (Bong 45); Gross (Brown 45); Murray (Hemed 77). Subs: Maenpaa.

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