A controversial penalty gave Brighton victory against relegation-threatened Millwall and took the Seagulls to within three points of the play-offs.

Albion top scorer Leonardo Ulloa wasted a great chance early on, heading wide at the far post, before referee Geoff Eltringham pointed to the spot.

Danny Shittu was deemed to have fouled Jesse Lingard and David Lopez found the corner of the net.

Millwall's best chance fell to Jermaine Easter who struck the crossbar.

The defeat, Millwall's fourth in six home league matches, leaves Ian Holloway's team deep in relegation trouble.

Millwall will regard themselves as somewhat unlucky to concede the penalty as there seemed to be minimal contact between debutant Lingard and Shittu, but Lopez converted from the spot to clinch the win with his fourth league goal of the season.

The visitors could have doubled their lead when Ulloa found Lingard with a brilliant cross, but Ryan Fredericks did well to deny the Manchester United loanee.

Shittu should have done better with a header after the break and, then, Easter struck the woodwork when just six yards from goal.

Late on, Lions debutant Owen Garvan went close from long range but the match ended in defeat for the hosts, their sixth loss in 10 league games.

Brighton assistant manager Nathan Jones on the penalty: "It was a difficult game. The penalty could have gone either way.

"Danny Shittu leaned on Jesse [Lingard] inside the box and he is a very strong lad. These things even themselves out. We have had stonewall penalty appeals turned down, but maybe we got a bit of luck.

"We would like to be in the play-offs but it is very tight and we have had a lot of games to contend with."

Millwall boss Ian Holloway: "It is shoulder to shoulder, if anything. I can't say that there wasn't enough contact because Danny is built like a proverbial.

"We haven't got anything like the result we deserved. I want my lads to not shout at referees because we have been fined £16,000 in the last few weeks and it is my job to get fairness.

"A referee should walk into this ground and be ready to be fair to both teams, but I don't think he was biased. It was a mistake."

Lineup, Bookings (3) & Substitutions (6)

Millwall

  • 01 Forde
  • 14 Fredericks
  • 28 Malone
  • 15 Upson
  • 03 Shittu Booked
  • 12 Lowry (McDonald - 61' )
  • 11 Woolford
  • 17 Williams
  • 19 Jackson (Feeney - 74' )
  • 08 Easter (Morison - 59' )
  • 29 Garvan

Substitutes

  • 02 Dunne
  • 07 Feeney
  • 09 Morison
  • 16 Beevers
  • 26 Abdou
  • 27 McDonald
  • 43 Bywater

Brighton & Hove Albion

  • 29 Kuszczak
  • 02 Bruno Booked
  • 17 Ward
  • 04 Andrews
  • 03 Greer
  • 20 Upson
  • 06 Stephens Booked
  • 11 Orlandi (March - 80' )
  • 19 Ulloa
  • 35 Lingard (Forster-Caskey - 67' )
  • 21 D. López (Buckley - 59' )

Substitutes

  • 01 Brezovan
  • 05 Dunk
  • 09 Rodríguez Sánchez
  • 14 Calderón
  • 18 Forster-Caskey
  • 27 March
  • 30 Buckley
Ref: Geoff Eltringham
Att: 12,149

Match Stats

Shots

18 10

On target

4 2

Corners

5 4

Fouls

5 14

Live Text Commentary

Full time

Full Time Match ends, Millwall 0, Brighton and Hove Albion 1.

90:00 +4:16 Full time

Full Time Second Half ends, Millwall 0, Brighton and Hove Albion 1.

90:00 +3:51

Corner, Brighton and Hove Albion. Conceded by Ryan Fredericks.

90:00 +2:09

Corner, Millwall. Conceded by Stephen Ward.

90:00 +2:06

Attempt blocked. Steve Morison (Millwall) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

90:00 +1:54

Attempt missed. Martyn Woolford (Millwall) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the left.

90:00 +1:14

Foul by Jake Forster-Caskey (Brighton and Hove Albion).

90:00 +1:14

Scott McDonald (Millwall) wins a free kick on the left wing.

90:00 +0:21

Leonardo Ulloa (Brighton and Hove Albion) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

90:00 +0:21

Foul by Danny Shittu (Millwall).

89:48

Attempt missed. Owen Garvan (Millwall) left footed shot from outside the box is too high. Assisted by Shaun Williams.

88:50

Attempt missed. Liam Feeney (Millwall) right footed shot from a difficult angle on the right is close, but misses to the right following a corner.

88:25

Corner, Millwall. Conceded by Matthew Upson.

86:40

Attempt blocked. Steve Morison (Millwall) right footed shot from a difficult angle on the right is blocked. Assisted by Liam Feeney.

85:52

Attempt missed. William Buckley (Brighton and Hove Albion) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right following a corner.

85:03

Corner, Brighton and Hove Albion. Conceded by Danny Shittu.

83:43

Foul by Bruno (Brighton and Hove Albion).

83:43

Scott Malone (Millwall) wins a free kick on the left wing.

82:50

Offside, Brighton and Hove Albion. Stephen Ward tries a through ball, but Jake Forster-Caskey is caught offside.

81:09

Attempt missed. William Buckley (Brighton and Hove Albion) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Jake Forster-Caskey.

79:33 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Brighton and Hove Albion. Solly March replaces Andrea Orlandi.

79:00

Foul by Matthew Upson (Brighton and Hove Albion).

79:00

Steve Morison (Millwall) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

77:39

Corner, Brighton and Hove Albion. Conceded by Danny Shittu.

77:11

William Buckley (Brighton and Hove Albion) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

77:11

Foul by Scott McDonald (Millwall).

75:53

Foul by William Buckley (Brighton and Hove Albion).

75:53

Martyn Woolford (Millwall) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

74:53

Attempt missed. Scott McDonald (Millwall) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Shaun Williams.

74:09

Offside, Brighton and Hove Albion. Leonardo Ulloa tries a through ball, but William Buckley is caught offside.

73:19 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Millwall. Liam Feeney replaces Simeon Jackson.

72:36

Attempt missed. Martyn Woolford (Millwall) header from the centre of the box is too high. Assisted by Owen Garvan.

72:35

Attempt blocked. Owen Garvan (Millwall) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Scott Malone.

71:47 Booking

Booking Dale Stephens (Brighton and Hove Albion) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

71:44

Foul by Dale Stephens (Brighton and Hove Albion).

71:44

Scott McDonald (Millwall) wins a free kick on the left wing.

71:33

Attempt blocked. Jake Forster-Caskey (Brighton and Hove Albion) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Stephen Ward.

67:18

Foul by Matthew Upson (Brighton and Hove Albion).

67:18

Steve Morison (Millwall) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

66:09 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Brighton and Hove Albion. Jake Forster-Caskey replaces Jesse Lingard.

65:27

Attempt saved. Scott McDonald (Millwall) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Ryan Fredericks.

62:09

Attempt missed. Scott McDonald (Millwall) right footed shot from the right side of the box is too high. Assisted by Steve Morison with a cross.

61:36

Foul by Bruno (Brighton and Hove Albion).

61:36

Scott McDonald (Millwall) wins a free kick on the left wing.

61:07

Attempt missed. Scott McDonald (Millwall) left footed shot from the left side of the box is high and wide to the left.

60:13 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Millwall. Scott McDonald replaces Shane Lowry.

59:25

Attempt missed. Bruno (Brighton and Hove Albion) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Dale Stephens.

58:56 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Millwall. Steve Morison replaces Jermaine Easter.

58:42 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Brighton and Hove Albion. William Buckley replaces David López.

52:05

Corner, Millwall. Conceded by Gordon Greer.

51:53

Jermaine Easter (Millwall) hits the bar with a left footed shot from the centre of the box.

49:21

Attempt missed. Martyn Woolford (Millwall) left footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left.

47:44

Corner, Millwall. Conceded by Dale Stephens.

47:20

Corner, Millwall. Conceded by Jesse Lingard.

45:32

Attempt saved. Danny Shittu (Millwall) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Owen Garvan with a cross.

45:16

Foul by David López (Brighton and Hove Albion).

45:16

Jermaine Easter (Millwall) wins a free kick on the left wing.

45:00

Second Half begins Millwall 0, Brighton and Hove Albion 1.

45:00 +1:04 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, Millwall 0, Brighton and Hove Albion 1.

45:00 +0:32

Attempt blocked. Jesse Lingard (Brighton and Hove Albion) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Leonardo Ulloa.

41:41

Foul by Andrea Orlandi (Brighton and Hove Albion).

41:41

Shaun Williams (Millwall) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

39:00 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Millwall 0, Brighton and Hove Albion 1. David López (Brighton and Hove Albion) converts the penalty with a right footed shot to the bottom left corner.

38:36 Booking

Booking Danny Shittu (Millwall) is shown the yellow card.

37:51

Penalty Brighton and Hove Albion. Jesse Lingard draws a foul in the penalty area.

37:51

Penalty conceded by Danny Shittu (Millwall) after a foul in the penalty area.

34:49

Attempt saved. Edward Upson (Millwall) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top right corner. Assisted by Ryan Fredericks.

33:32

Foul by Dale Stephens (Brighton and Hove Albion).

33:32

Edward Upson (Millwall) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

24:14

Attempt saved. Leonardo Ulloa (Brighton and Hove Albion) header from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Andrea Orlandi with a cross.

22:43

Offside, Brighton and Hove Albion. Tomasz Kuszczak tries a through ball, but Leonardo Ulloa is caught offside.

20:51

Foul by Bruno (Brighton and Hove Albion).

20:51

Edward Upson (Millwall) wins a free kick on the left wing.

16:18

Hand ball by Ryan Fredericks (Millwall).

16:10

Attempt blocked. Jermaine Easter (Millwall) right footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Owen Garvan.

14:49

Attempt missed. Leonardo Ulloa (Brighton and Hove Albion) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Bruno with a cross.

13:17

Foul by Bruno (Brighton and Hove Albion).

13:17

Jermaine Easter (Millwall) wins a free kick on the left wing.

10:30

Attempt missed. Dale Stephens (Brighton and Hove Albion) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left.

9:33

Corner, Brighton and Hove Albion. Conceded by Ryan Fredericks.

9:31

Attempt missed. Leonardo Ulloa (Brighton and Hove Albion) left footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Stephen Ward with a cross.

9:13

Jesse Lingard (Brighton and Hove Albion) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

9:13

Foul by Ryan Fredericks (Millwall).

8:07

Attempt saved. Shaun Williams (Millwall) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top right corner.

7:16

Foul by Bruno (Brighton and Hove Albion).

7:16

Edward Upson (Millwall) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

4:01

Offside, Millwall. Owen Garvan tries a through ball, but Martyn Woolford is caught offside.

3:20

Attempt missed. Edward Upson (Millwall) right footed shot from outside the box is too high from a direct free kick.

2:52

Simeon Jackson (Millwall) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

2:52

Foul by Gordon Greer (Brighton and Hove Albion).

0:50

Offside, Brighton and Hove Albion. Bruno tries a through ball, but Leonardo Ulloa is caught offside.

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

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