Soccer

Sean Dyche ‘frustrated’ by nine added minutes as Everton concede at death

Lewis Dunk grabbed a last-gasp leveller for Brighton.

Everton manager Sean Dyche saw his side concede a last-gasp equaliser to Brighton .
Everton manager Sean Dyche Everton manager Sean Dyche saw his side concede a last-gasp equaliser to Brighton . (Gareth Fuller/PA)

Sean Dyche blamed nine minutes of stoppage time for Everton’s failure to hold on for a crucial victory at Brighton.

The Toffees were leading through Jarrad Branthwaite’s spectacular strike and defending against a team reduced to 10 men after Billy Gilmour was sent off.

But Dyche looked dismayed when nine minutes of injury time was indicated by the fourth official and in the 95th minute Brighton captain Lewis Dunk headed home a Pascal Gross as the hosts rescued a point.

The Toffees boss said: “After a tough first 20 minutes when they were the better side I thought we grew into the first half, I was very pleased with the mentality as this is not an easy place to come.

“The second half was a really good away performance. We scored a really good goal and then you’re frustrated by the fact nine goes up and that changes the whole stadium.

“They keep throwing bodies forward and we didn’t deal with that.

“But on the other hand they have only lost one here this season so it’s a good point and we’ll take it.

“We’ve got no divine right to win games, you’ve got to be diligent the whole game. Before the game you want to win, but you take a point down here and it’s another point on the table.”

Everton edged up to 21 points, one clear of the relegation zone after a ninth game without a win.

“We should be on 31, don’t forget,” added Dyche in reference to the 10-point deduction and the club’s wait for the result of their appeal.

“That’s pretty healthy compared to previous seasons. I have to look at the bigger picture.”

Everton made the breakthrough in the 72nd minute through the unlikely figure of Branthwaite.

Jordan Pickford launched a free-kick into the area and Evan Ferguson’s attempted clearance fell to the young centre-half.

Branthwaite took one touch with his right foot and then lashed a powerful, angled drive with his left foot into the top corner.

Ten minutes from time Scotland midfielder Gilmour was dismissed after catching Amadou Onana with his studs.

But Brighton kept knocking at the door and Dunk prised it open with a towering header on his 400th league appearance for his boyhood club.

“At the end one point is better than zero, but if you analyse the game it’s very tough to accept this result, especially at home,” said Seagulls boss Roberto De Zerbi.

“I think we deserved to win, we created many chances to score, then we conceded the goal, a set-piece, second ball and a centre-half hits the top corner.

“Everton are a very good team, they have important players. We knew before the game it would be very tough. But we lost two points today.”