Brighton leave it late to beat Burton
Tomer Hemed's 88th-minute penalty was enough to secure a first away win of the season for Brighton at Burton's Pirelli Stadium, ending the Brewers five-game unbeaten run in the Championship.
It had looked like being a frustrating afternoon for Chris Hughton's men, who had dominated proceedings and threatened a goal for long spells of the second half.
But when the influential Anthony Knockaert threaded the ball through for Jiri Skalak, the Brighton man was sent tumbling by Jackson Irvine with Hemed confidently sending Brewers keeper Jon McLaughlin the wrong way.
Burton were forced into several changes from their draw at Fulham on Tuesday evening, with Kyle McFadzean and Ben Turner suspended and skipper John Mousinho, Lucas Akins and Damien McCrory all on the treatment table.
Chris O'Grady, an influential presence for Burton in attack this season, was unable to play against his parent club and his hold-up play was certainly missed by the Brewers.
Brighton had the better first-half chances, with Lewis Dunk heading wide from a corner and Knockaert forcing McLaughlin into a good save on the stretch after some excellent individual skill on the edge of the penalty area.
The Brewers had chances as well in an entertaining first period, both Will Miller and Jamie Ward extending Brighton's David Stockdale. Irvine, with four goals in six Championship appearances so far for Nigel Clough's side, almost bagged a fifth of the season with a near-post snapshot that the Seagulls stopper did well to keep out.
Brighton continued to look the more likely but Jamie Murphy's teasing low cross evading everyone in a Brighton shirt in the opening seconds of the second half and the frustration for the visitors continued on 53 minutes when Dunk planted a firm header against the face of the crossbar from a corner.
New signing Shane Duffy also failed to convert from a corner on 72 minutes as he steamed into the box to meet Knockaert's delivery.
Burton had to produce a truly gritty defensive display, superbly marshalled once again by John Brayford at the heart of the back three.
Matty Palmer found space to lash in a rising 25-yard effort that cleared the crossbar before Stockdale flapped at a Marcus Harness cross with Lloyd Dyer unable to get to the loose ball.
For all their pressure from open play it took a penalty to finally break Burton's stubborn resistance, though few could claim Brighton did not deserve the victory.