Brighton & Hove Albion 0 Oldham Athletic 0

Last updated : 10 January 2004 By Footymad Previewer

Brighton lost further ground on the Second Division leaders with a frustrating 0-0 stalemate against struggling Oldham at the Withdean Stadium.

They have now won only one of their last five league games and the best the relegated Seagulls can realistically hope for now is a place in the play offs.

It could have been worse for Mark McGhee's side had it not been for goalkeeper Ben Roberts.

He made three fine saves on his return from a knee injury. Robert's heroics began as early as the fourth minute when he helped a close range shot by Danny Boshell onto the bar.

Roberts rescued Brighton again in the second half twice in close minutes.

The former Middlesbrough and Charlton keeper diverted an angled drive by Paul Murray from ten yards narrowly wide of the far post. From the resulting corner, Roberts somehow managed to push a thumping header from Ernest Cooksey against the bar.

Brighton hit by injuries and a suspension for midfielder Richard Carpenter, dominated for long periods of the match but lacked the invention to find a way through a solid Oldham defence.

Leon Knight, their leading scorer with 18 goals, was foiled in the first half by Oldham's Australian keeper Les Pogliacomi with a header following a long throw from Kerry Mayo.

Pogliacomi preserved a hard earned point for Oldham with two more saves in the closing stages. He kept out a shot from Brighton's second half sub Daniel Harding and moments later Pogliacomi also managed to tip a toe-poke by Harding's fellow young replacement Daniel Marney over the bar.

McGhee said: "It was a very frustrating game. Although Ben Roberts was forced into two or three very good saves, we had the bulk of the best chances and enough to win the game. It highlighted again our need for another striker."