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Neal Maupay misses from the spot as Norwich and Brighton play out goalless draw

Brighton and Hove Albion v Norwich City – Premier League – AMEX Stadium
(Image credit: John Walton)

A first-half penalty miss by Neal Maupay ensured Brighton and Norwich played out a goalless draw at the Amex Stadium.

The goal-shy hosts dominated throughout against their bottom-of-the-table opponents but saw their usual Achilles heel crop up again.

Maupay had the chance to break the deadlock in the 29th minute but blazed over before he squandered another late chance to ensure a second stalemate of the campaign between the teams.

Norwich’s quest to end a run of six straight defeats was not helped by further injury problems, with five players ruled out from their last match – a 2-1 defeat to a stoppage-time goal at Leeds three weeks ago.

The hosts were in equally poor form but the Seagulls started brightly with the recalled Tariq Lamptey and Maupay trying their luck early on in a sign of things to come.

It took until the 20th minute for a worthwhile opportunity to be created but Maupay and then Danny Welbeck, also back in the starting XI, scuffed their efforts following neat build-up play between Leandro Trossard and Pascal Gross.

A drilled strike off target by Alexis Mac Allister further signalled Brighton’s intent and they should have taken the lead just before the half-hour mark.

Referee Simon Hooper pointed to the spot after Sam Byram handled Gross’ deep cross, but the spot-kick was squandered by Maupay.

The French forward blazed over – after some pre-penalty words from visiting goalkeeper Tim Krul – much to the delight of the Canaries fans behind the goal.

It meant the hosts’ wait to celebrate a goal at the Amex Stadium continued having not witnessed Graham Potter’s side score at home since January 18.

Chances continued to be created, with Mac Allister curling wide after a smart free-kick by Solly March before Pierre Lees-Melou had penalty appeals for the away side waved away to ensure it remained 0-0 at the break.

After a delay to the start of the second half due to referee Hooper experiencing technical difficulties with his earpiece, it was Norwich who began on the front foot with Milot Rashica’s effort blocked by Joel Veltman.

Normal service quickly resumed, with Trossard’s quick feet and deflected shot forcing the first of three dangerous corners in a row.

Krul produced a wonderful save from the first to deny fellow Holland international Veltman from a close-range header before Welbeck’s flick-on forced another corner but Maupay, who was found at the back post, could only fire this one into the side-netting.

Despite that let-off, Norwich boss Dean Smith had seen enough and introduced teenager Jonathan Rowe after an hour in an attempt to spark his side into life.

Veltman went close again with a header blocked by Canaries captain Grant Hanley before a rare venture down the other end saw Ben Gibson’s effort from a Billy Gilmour free-kick gathered by Robert Sanchez in the home goal.

Another golden chance was presented to Maupay with 13 minutes left but again it was not taken.

Trossard skipped away from Mathias Normann on the right and cut back for Brighton’s top scorer but his side-footed shot from eight yards went wide.

Maupay was withdrawn immediately afterwards and while he walked around the pitch to warm applause, the atmosphere could have soured had Rashica applied the required finish to Teemu Pukki’s chipped centre in the 79th minute but the Norwich attacker volleyed over.

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