Brighton and Hove Albion boss said his side pushed Tottenham Hotspur 'all the way' - and he also highlighted controversial VAR decisions

Brighton and Hove Albion boss Graham Potter said his side pushed a 'strong' Tottenham Hotspur 'all the way' in their 2-1 away defeat to Jose Mourinho's men, which included some controversial VAR decisions
Graham PotterGraham Potter
Graham Potter

Brighton boss Graham Potter said after the game: "We played well for big periods of the game and pushed Tottenham all the way. A lot of positives for us, you need the fine margins to go your way.

"The second goal was disappointing, we can do better and up until that point we were pushing and pushing. They can bring on Gareth Bale. They are as strong as anybody I have seen so far.

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"It's nice for Tariq Lamptey, I'm sure he wanted to be on the winning team though. We are so happy with his effort and performance, he'll get better and better.

"He's got that ability to threaten the goal with assists, winning penalties or goals so it's nice for him.

"I'm confused by everything to be honest about our equaliser. When you watch it live it could have been a foul, he didn't see it, and I'm confused by our penalty shout as well to be honest. That's VAR for you."

Spurs were quick out the blocks and found themselves 1-0 up after 13 minutes thanks to a Harry Kane penalty, which was dispatched expertly into the bottom right, sending Brighton goalkeeper Robert Sanchez the wrong way.

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The penalty was awarded after Adam Lallana went through the back of Kane following a mistimed aerial challenge. The foul was right on the line of the 18-yard box and VAR Jonathan Moss was called in to assist, but it looked like a correct final decision from referee Graham Scott to give a pen.

In fairness to Lallana, however, Brighton had multiple opportunities to clear their lines but Adam Webster, Joel Veltman, Dan Burn and Yves Bissouma were unable to do so.

Brighton grew into the game, trusted their formation and went on to dominate until half-time. Tariq Lamptey, as always, provided an outlet and a threat out on the right, and so did Solly March on the opposite wing.

The Seagulls had a penalty claim themselves when Lamptey crossed a low ball into the box to Leandro Trossard, who went down after a tussle with Matt Doherty. The incident went to VAR, which deemed Doherty's tugging on Trossard not enough to give a penalty - it would have been soft if given.

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Brighton started the second half how they ended the first: attacking with intent through their wing-backs, and they were rewarded for it.

Lamptey slotted home the equaliser in the 56th minute after he found himself in space inside the Spurs box with time to slot past Hugo Lloris. The opportunity was created thanks to some industrious work down the opposite wing from March.

But the goal came came with controversy, as VAR was consolidated once more by the referee. March looked as if he fouled Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg in the build up but, after going to the monitor himself, the referee stuck with his initial decision and gave the goal.

After the equaliser, Spurs stepped up and had the better of the chances. Erik Lamela went close in the 67th minute when his effort from outside the box hit the post, which saw the ball then ricochet into Veltman and towards the Brighton goal, forcing Sanchez into a good reaction save.

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Gareth Bale was introduced in the 69th minute and made an immediate impact. A cross-field ball from Toby Aldeweireld into the path of a marauding Reguilon saw an unmarked Bale picked out in the box, who headed home from six yards out in the 73rd minute, clinching all three points for Spurs to put them into second place.

Tottenham manager Jose Mourinho said after the game: "I was not surprised because I knew they were a very good team, with a good coach capable of doing what they did. Graham Potter is a very good coach.

"They have lots of good players and they caused us some difficulties. I believe it is more fair to say the teams with less history and stature if you want to say, they are getting better and better.

"It was a great reaction after they equalised, we hit the post twice, score and after that it was a question of managing the game well, like we didn’t against West Ham."

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