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Aaron Connolly hits the net and goes off injured during six-goal draw between Brighton and Wolves

The Ireland striker had an eventful first-half against Wolves.

Image: PA

Updated Jan 2nd 2021, 7:27 PM

IRELAND STRIKER AARON Connolly got the New Year off to a goalscoring start in the Premier League for Brighton but then was forced off injured at half-time in their eventual 3-3 draw with Wolves this evening.

The Galway native got the nod to start by manager Graham Potter as part of five changes in search of only a second success in 15 league outings and rewarded that show of faith early on to put his team ahead 1-0.

Leandro Trossard twisted and turned Rayan Ait-Nouri on the right flank before delivering an in-swinging cross for Connolly to arrive ahead of Wolves goalkeeper Rui Patricio and poke home.

It was Connolly’s second goal of the season and his first at home for Brighton since scoring twice on his full league debut against Spurs in October 2019.

But Brighton’s joy was short-lived as Morocco international Romain Saiss levelled for Wolves in the 19th minute, diverting a looping header beyond Robert Sanchez following Nelson Semedo’s right-wing cross to score for the second time in three games.

Dominant Wolves deservedly edged ahead, albeit in fortuitous fashion, 11 minutes before the break. Pedro Neto’s stinging effort from the right deflected off Solly March and was repelled by Sanchez, only for the ball to rebound off the unfortunate Dan Burn and trickle over the line.

Burn’s miserable evening continued as he conceded a penalty a minute before the break. After being beaten for pace by Adama Traore on the Wolves right, he brought down his opponent with a mistimed lunge.

Midfielder Neves took full advantage of the situation, coolly sending Sanchez the wrong way from 12 yards to claim his first goal of the season and leave Wolves in front 3-1.

brighton-and-hove-albion-v-wolverhampton-wanderers-premier-league-amex-stadium Wolves players celebrate after Ruben Neves scored. Source: PA

Connolly went down with what looked like a hamstring injury before the break and was subsequently substituted prior to the second-half action as Andi Zeqiri came on.

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Brighton did get an early second-half boost when Neal Maupay, who missed from the spot in the 1-1 draw with Liverpool last month, drew a foul from Joao Moutinho inside the box before picking himself to slam the ball down the centre of the goal.

Albion almost levelled in the 68th minute but Webster’s header from a March corner bounced back off the woodwork. Wolves did not learn from that let off and were again susceptible at set-pieces as Dunk equalised.

The centre-back found space at the far past to powerfully connect with Trossard’s right-wing corner and nod beyond Patricio.

britain-soccer-premier-league Lewis Dunk celebrates Brighton's equaliser. Source: Gareth Fuller

Albion had the better of the final 20 minutes without creating much and it was Wolves who went closest to a winner.

Unmarked substitute Owen Otasowie was presented with a golden chance deep into added time but somehow headed over at the end of a pulsating match.

- Additional reporting by PA

Screenshot 2020-11-24 at 9.04.07 AM

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