Premier League
Watford0Brighton0

Watford 0-0 Brighton & Hove Albion

Britos challenge
Britos received his third red card in the Premier League since the start of 2016-17; more than any other player

Brighton claimed their first ever Premier League point despite failing to break down 10-man Watford at Vicarage Road.

Uruguayan defender Miguel Britos was shown a first-half red card for a high and reckless challenge on Brighton's Anthony Knockaert, who was lucky to escape injury.

In a game of few clear-cut chances, Brighton came closest to making the breakthrough as they twice hit the post through Knockaert and Tomer Hemed.

But Watford's 10 men held firm to claim a battling point that extends their unbeaten start to the season, as the Seagulls' wait for a first Premier League goal since promotion goes on.

The hosts started brightly, with Nathaniel Chalobah seeing a goal-bound header blocked by Lewis Dunk and record signing Andre Gray missing from a Nordin Amrabat pull back.

Amrabat, who had looked dangerous for the hosts, was soon replaced by Craig Cathcart as head coach Marco Silva patched up his defence after Britos' dismissal.

Brighton appealed for a penalty when Abdoulaye Doucoure put in a high foot while competing for a loose ball with Knockaert, but referee Graham Scott instead awarded an indirect free-kick.

Both sides pushed for the win in the final 10 minutes as Watford introduced club captain Troy Deeney and Albion threw on record signing Jose Izquierdo for his debut, but neither could make a telling contribution.

'The most horrendous challenge'

Britos
Brighton only had one shot on target after Britos' red card

Britos protested his 24th-minute dismissal, but in truth there was little defending what was a dangerous two-footed tackle on Frenchman Knockaert.

Describing the challenge on Final Score, BBC Sport pundit Garth Crooks said: "I have no doubt in my mind that is a red card. I have not seen a tackle like that in 40 years."

On Twitter, Match of the Day presenter Gary Lineker described it as "the most horrendous tackle".

Speaking after the game, Watford goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes said Britos had apologised to his team-mates, adding "we need to apologise to the Brighton players as well".

"He knows what he did and I don't think he did it intentionally," Gomes continued. "He always goes for the ball and he goes fair, but he lost timing and caught the player."

Britos - also sent off twice last season - is the second Watford player to be sent off in a week, after Jose Holebas saw red in the 3-2 EFL Cup defeat to Bristol City.

Man of the match - Anthony Knockaert (Brighton)

Anthony Knockaert; Nordin Amrabat
In his first league start of the season, Knockaert was a nuisance all afternoon. He was unlucky to be denied by a post in the first half and showed a creative flair not apparent in Brighton's first two games

Watford's 10 men hold on - the stats

  • Watford have been given six red cards since the start of last season in the Premier League; a joint-high alongside Manchester City and West Ham United.
  • Watford didn't attempt a single shot on target in this match - they only did this on one occasion at Vicarage Road in both 2015-16 (v Southampton) and 2016-17 (v Hull).
  • Brighton have failed to score in their first three Premier League games of 2017-18. Before this season, 11 teams had done this and none of those sides ended the season in the relegation zone.
Gordon Smith
Brighton have not scored in the top flight of English football since Gordon Smith's goal in a 2-1 defeat at Norwich City in the 1982-83 season

'We lost emotional balance' - reaction

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Watford 0-0 Brighton: Marco Silva praises Watford spirit after red card

Watford manager Marco Silva: "It was a difficult match, it started really well for us, we had chances to score. After the first chance they created we lost emotional balance. We need to continue what we did before.

"The red card changed everything. But after that our players showed good spirit and attitude.

"I didn't see it, but the information I have is that it [the decision to send Britos off] looked fair. I have spoken with the player and we need to be calm to think what we will do."

Brighton manager Chris Hughton: "It is a concern [that Brighton are yet to score], yes, because on the balance of play and getting in areas we are, we should do better.

"We need to find a way to win these games, we hit the post twice and feel it is coming.

"I hope we are successful in this transfer window to get a bit more attacking threat. I hope I'll be busy, can't guarantee it, but we are trying as hard as we can. It is a difficult market."

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Hughton frustrated not to get Brighton penalty

Brighton winger Anthony Knockaert: "We are glad to get our first point but we're also disappointed not to get a win because we were playing against 10 men. We had a few chances but couldn't find a goal.

"We showed better character today and there are some good signs for the future. We have two weeks to work hard during the international break.

"We knew it would not be easy because they kept good shape and in the end I think they were happy with a draw."

What's next?

After the international break, Brighton play host to West Brom in the Premier League on 9 September, while Watford travel to Southampton on the same day (both 15:00 BST).

Line-ups

Watford

  • 1Gomes
  • 21Femenía
  • 5Prödl
  • 27Kabasele
  • 3BritosBooked at 24mins
  • 16Doucouré
  • 8Cleverley
  • 14Chalobah
  • 7AmrabatSubstituted forCathcartat 28'minutesSubstituted forCarrilloat 47'minutes
  • 18GraySubstituted forDeeneyat 83'minutes
  • 11Richarlison

Substitutes

  • 9Deeney
  • 10Success
  • 15Cathcart
  • 23Watson
  • 28Carrillo
  • 29Capoue
  • 30Pantilimon

Brighton

  • 1Ryan
  • 2BrunoBooked at 17minsSubstituted forRoseniorat 45'minutes
  • 22Duffy
  • 5Dunk
  • 29Suttner
  • 11KnockaertSubstituted forIzquierdo Menaat 81'minutes
  • 6Stephens
  • 24Pröpper
  • 20March
  • 13GroßSubstituted forMurphyat 90+1'minutes
  • 10Hemed

Substitutes

  • 4Hünemeier
  • 8Skalak
  • 12Mäenpää
  • 14Sidwell
  • 15Murphy
  • 19Izquierdo Mena
  • 23Rosenior
Referee:
Graham Scott
Attendance:
20,181

Match Stats

Home TeamWatfordAway TeamBrighton
Possession
Home42%
Away58%
Shots
Home8
Away16
Shots on Target
Home0
Away2
Corners
Home3
Away11
Fouls
Home7
Away18

Live Text

Match ends, Watford 0, Brighton and Hove Albion 0.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Watford 0, Brighton and Hove Albion 0.

Attempt missed. Kiko Femenía (Watford) right footed shot from outside the box is too high. Assisted by Abdoulaye Doucouré following a set piece situation.

Foul by Dale Stephens (Brighton and Hove Albion).

Nathaniel Chalobah (Watford) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Attempt blocked. Markus Suttner (Brighton and Hove Albion) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Solly March.

Substitution

Substitution, Brighton and Hove Albion. Jamie Murphy replaces Pascal Groß.

Attempt missed. André Carrillo (Watford) header from the centre of the box is too high. Assisted by Kiko Femenía with a cross.

Foul by Davy Pröpper (Brighton and Hove Albion).

Troy Deeney (Watford) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Attempt missed. José Izquierdo (Brighton and Hove Albion) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses the top left corner. Assisted by Markus Suttner.

Foul by Shane Duffy (Brighton and Hove Albion).

Troy Deeney (Watford) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Solly March (Brighton and Hove Albion).

Kiko Femenía (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Watford. Troy Deeney replaces Andre Gray.

Offside, Brighton and Hove Albion. Liam Rosenior tries a through ball, but José Izquierdo is caught offside.

Substitution

Substitution, Brighton and Hove Albion. José Izquierdo replaces Anthony Knockaert.

Attempt missed. Andre Gray (Watford) left footed shot from a difficult angle on the left misses to the left. Assisted by Richarlison.

Tomer Hemed (Brighton and Hove Albion) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Sebastian Prödl (Watford).

Attempt missed. Shane Duffy (Brighton and Hove Albion) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Pascal Groß with a cross following a corner.

Corner, Brighton and Hove Albion. Conceded by Sebastian Prödl.

Corner, Brighton and Hove Albion. Conceded by Nathaniel Chalobah.

Corner, Brighton and Hove Albion. Conceded by Heurelho Gomes.

Attempt saved. Anthony Knockaert (Brighton and Hove Albion) left footed shot from long range on the left is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Davy Pröpper with a headed pass.

Attempt blocked. Richarlison (Watford) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Kiko Femenía.

Corner, Watford. Conceded by Davy Pröpper.

Foul by Pascal Groß (Brighton and Hove Albion).

Abdoulaye Doucouré (Watford) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Offside, Brighton and Hove Albion. Dale Stephens tries a through ball, but Tomer Hemed is caught offside.

Attempt missed. Richarlison (Watford) right footed shot from outside the box is too high. Assisted by Sebastian Prödl.

Corner, Brighton and Hove Albion. Conceded by Sebastian Prödl.

Attempt missed. Anthony Knockaert (Brighton and Hove Albion) header from the right side of the six yard box misses to the left. Assisted by Solly March with a cross.

Foul by Dale Stephens (Brighton and Hove Albion).

Richarlison (Watford) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match Liam Rosenior (Brighton and Hove Albion) because of an injury.

Foul by Shane Duffy (Brighton and Hove Albion).

Nathaniel Chalobah (Watford) wins a free kick on the left wing.

goal

As It Stood

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1Man Utd3300100109
2Huddersfield32104047
3Man City32105237
4West Brom22002026
5Watford31205325
6Southampton31203215
7Liverpool21104314
8Everton21102114
9Swansea311124-24
10Tottenham21013213
11Arsenal21014403
12Chelsea21014403
13Burnley21013303
14Newcastle31023303
15Stoke21011103
16Leicester310256-13
17Brighton301204-41
18Bournemouth300315-40
19Crystal Palace300306-60
20West Ham3003210-80
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