Six things we learned from Brighton's win against West Brom

Brighton players celebrate Pascal Gross' opener. Picture by Phil Westlake (PW Sporting Photography)
Brighton players celebrate Pascal Gross' opener. Picture by Phil Westlake (PW Sporting Photography)

Brighton beat West Brom 3-1 this afternoon to record their first-ever Premier League win - here's six things we learned from the game.

Up and running

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

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

Pascal Gross will forever be in Albion's history books after scoring the club's first-ever Premier League goal in their first victory in the top flight of English football for 34 years.

The German netted on the stroke of half-time when he controlled Solly March's left-wing cross, cut inside and then slid the ball home from six yards.

It ended a run of 315 minutes without a goal in the league this season for the Seagulls and was their first goal in the top flight of English football since Gordon Smith scored in a 2-1 defeat to Norwich on May 14, 1983.

Like the old saying about London buses, it then took Brighton just 18 minutes to add two more goals, through Gross and then Tomer Hemed.

Tomer Hemed celebrates. Picture by Phil Westlake (PW Sporting Photography)

Tomer Hemed celebrates. Picture by Phil Westlake (PW Sporting Photography)

The Seagulls also had the ball in the back of the net early in the first half when Shane Duffy poked the ball home from close range but his joy was shortlived by the offside flag.

No new striker, no problem

There was a lot of panicking from Brighton fans after transfer deadline day last week when the Seagulls failed to land a striker.

Moves for Florin Andone and Vincent Janssen both fell through and Brighton fans were worried the team would not score enough goals. Seagulls chairman Tony Bloom and chief executive Paul Barber both admitted their disappointment that they were unable to add a forward but in his pre-match press conference, Brighton boss Chris Hughton said he was confident the team could score goals.

The team answered any fans' doubts about where goals are going to come from emphatically this afternoon. Shane Duffy had an effort ruled out for offside, before Pascal Gross scored twice and then set up Tomer Hemed for the third.

The goals were scored without club record signing Columbian winger Jose Izquierdo on the pitch and also Glenn Murray, who top-scored with 23 goals as Brighton were promoted from the Championship last season.

Back in Brighton

Gareth Barry, who left Brighton aged 16 to join Aston Villa in 1997, played for the first time against the Seagulls.

The 36-year-old has played for Villa, Manchester City, Everton and now West Brom in the top flight and is second in the all-time Premier League list of appearance makers with 631, now just one behind Ryan Giggs.

Barry, born in Hastings, won the Premier League title and FA Cup at Villa and has 53 caps for England. He partnered Jake Livermore and debutant Grzegorz Krychowiak in the central of midfield for the Baggies.

He went close a couple of times in the first half as one shot flew over and Albion keeper Mathew Ryan then made an excellent save to push a shot over but it was a unhappy return as Brighton picked up their first win of the season.

Unsung hero

While Albion's attacking players will take much of the plaudits, Dutch international Davy Propper was outstanding in midfield for the Seagulls.

He scored twice in the Netherlands' 3-1 win against Bulgaria in midweek and carried on his impressive form with a confident performance.

It was by far his best outing in a Brighton shirt and there are promising signs that his partnership with Dale Stephens is really beginning to click.

With Beram Kayal and Steve Sidwell both out injured, Brighton will rely on the midfield duo to continue this form in their upcoming games.

It's also worth noting Shane Duffy and Lewis Dunk were again excellent in central defence for the Seagulls.

International calibre opposition

The quality of West Brom's squad was shown by the fact 17 of their 18 players have full international caps.

The only player not to have earned a full international cap is defender Craig Dawson, who has played 15 times for England under-21s and also three games for Team GB at the London Olympics in 2012.

The Baggies have been in the top flight for eight years and their squad shows the level of quality the Seagulls are up against this season as they try to stay in the Premier League.

West Brom are a side capable of another top ten finish - like last year - and that is shown with the experience and strength in depth they possess. On the bench, the Baggies had highly-rated former Nottingham Forest youngster Oliver Burke, who they signed from RB Leipzig, James Morrison, who has 45 caps for Scotland, Chris Brunt, who has played 61 times for Northern Ireland, and summer transfer window signing Kieran Gibbs.

Of the Brighton squad, eight of the 18 players have played for their country. Davy Propper scored twice for the Netherlands in their win against Bulgaria in midweek, while Shane Duffy was on target for Ireland in their 1-1 draw at Georgia last weekend.

Home form will be key

There's no doubt home form will be vital for Brighton this season.

The Seagulls supporters created a rocking atmosphere throughout the match and Chelsea loanee Izzy Brown, watching from the stands while recovering from a hamstring injury, tweeted afterwards that the 'atmosphere was crazy'.

Burnley made Turf Moor a fortress as they stayed in the Premier League last season and Brighton need to do the same at the Amex this season. They need to pick up points against the teams in the middle to lower end of the table and today is a great starting point.

There's little doubt the win will give the players huge confidence to take forward into two huge upcoming matches, against Bournemouth on Friday and then at home to Newcastle on September 24.