Poyet: Palace loss hard to take: Match Review

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Brighton boss Gus Poyet was glad his side were given a reality check - but wished it had come against anyone else but Crystal Palace.

Poyet's Seagulls were within 10 minutes of going back to the top of the npower Championship, as well as securing a first win over their arch-rivals on home soil since 1988.

Instead, their unbeaten league record at their new Amex Stadium came crashing down around their ears as the Eagles headed back up the A23 with a 3-1 win.

And to add insult to injury it was Glenn Murray, last season's top scorer for Brighton, who sealed their fate in stoppage time.

"I'm sad because it was Palace, if it was any other team I would welcome this because it brings people back down to earth, because we are not as good as we looked in the table," said Poyet.

"As a team if you don't want to lose one game it's against Palace, but we did and we have to take it.

"But it's good for me, I learned more in this game than from games we win."

It all looked so different when Brighton went ahead after six minutes.

Craig Mackail-Smith, the man Poyet brought in to replace Murray, prodded in his sixth of the season from Gary Dicker's cross

But that was as much as the hosts could muster as Palace took control, and their pressure finally told in the 80th minute when Wilfried Zaha thumped a low shot past Casper Ankergren.

With Brighton on the ropes, substitute Darren Ambrose dragged the Eagles level a minute from time.

And Murray rammed the taunts of the home faithful back down their throats with the third, although he pointedly refused to celebrate his 20-yard strike.

"I'm not happy for Palace but I'm happy for Glenn, he's a good lad," added Poyet.

"The problem is we cannot seem to play for 90 minutes. I started playing in 1992, and from then until now the game has always lasted 90 minutes."

Palace boss Dougie Freedman, who scored twice the last time these best of enemies met six years ago, was able to celebrate the end of a three-match losing streak in the league.

"We left it late to score but I felt 3-1 was a fair reflection of the game," he said.

"It's fantastic for our fans, a great result. They have been through a lot.

"Glenn played very well as he has done since he has been here. He's a wonderful player and a wonderful addition to our squad.

"But it's about Crystal Palace, not the Glenn Murray show. It's a good night for Crystal Palace."

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

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Dougie Freedman
Gary Dicker
Darren Ambrose
Casper Ankergren
Craig Mackail-Smith
Crystal Palace
Glenn Murray

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