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Gulls relegated but Grecians safe

Torquay United have been relegated to the Conference despite winning at Mansfield, but Exeter City are safe after beating promoted Scunthorpe.

CHAMPIONSHIP

  • BRIGHTON & HOVE ALBION 2 - 0 YEOVIL TOWN
Brighton's Will Buckley (left) is challenged by Yeovil Town's Joe Ralls. Credit: Gareth Fuller/EMPICS Sport

Late goals from Kazenga LuaLua and Jesse Lingard confirmed Yeovil's relegation from the Sky Bet Championship and fired Brighton back into the play-off places on Friday night.

Substitute LuaLua struck with 11 minutes left and Lingard in stoppage time to secure a 2-0 win for the hosts and send Yeovil back to League One after one season.

The Glovers had arrived on the south coast already resigned to their fate, needing to win their remaining two games, hope everyone else around them lost theirs, and engineer a 13-goal swing.

But the Somerset side, who continue to punch above their weight while revelling in the tag 'Little Old Yeovil', were determined not to go away quietly and a battling display nearly ruined Brighton's chances of exiting the Championship in the opposite direction.

Yet Yeovil almost stunned the hosts after a quarter of an hour when Ruben Palazuelos crashed a superb effort from 25 yards against the crossbar.

The Seagulls were able to welcome Andrea Orlandi back into their side after two months on the sidelines, but the former Swansea winger looked a little rusty as he missed two gilt-edged chances in the space of two minutes.

First Lingard outstripped the Yeovil defence and crossed towards Leonardo Ulloa, but when the ball came back to Orlandi 12 yards out he blazed wide.

Moments later Will Buckley chipped the ball into the area where Orlandi dived to meet it in front of goal, but again the Spaniard was off target.

Brighton survived a scare in the 35th minute when keeper Tomasz Kuszczak came out to punch Jamie McAllister's free-kick from the halfway line, and completely missed it, but Lewis Dunk had got back on the line to prevent a bizarre goal.

Yeovil Town's Joe Ralls in action. Credit: Gareth Fuller/EMPICS Sport

The Seagulls piled forward throughout the second half but still their finishing was wayward.

Ulloa missed two headers in quick succession and Orlandi's attempted backheel in front of goal ended with the ball flying through his legs.

Brighton desperately needed a lucky break and they got it in the 79th minute when LuaLua aimed for Ulloa in the penalty area.

Once again the ball missed its intended target, but this time with the perfect outcome for Brighton as Town keeper Marek Stech was fooled by Ulloa's out-stretched leg and the ball nestled in the corner for a fortuitous goal.

Lingard doubled the lead, perhaps harshly on Yeovil, when he tucked away Solly March's pull-back moments before the end.

Yeovil's players applaud their fans following their defeat to Brighton. Credit: Gareth Fuller/EMPICS Sport

It's sad, although we knew we were going to be sad, so it's not a shock.

But I was pleased with the boys' efforts and it was fantastic that the Brighton fans applauded our lads when we walked off.

A couple of decisions went against us here, and a couple of moments of quality from Brighton. But I'm proud of the lads knowing we have given everything.

I've got a board meeting on Monday and we'll see where we are going.

Are we going to progress or are we going to have to keep pulling a rabbit out of the hat each time?

We can't keep doing that. We can't be little old Yeovil forever. It's a nice thing to be called but the whole town, the whole club, the whole area has to support it.

Brighton have a Premier League stadium and we play in a Conference stadium. We have to be doing a lot more to compete with teams like Brighton.

– Gary Johnson, Yeovil Town manager

LEAGUE TWO

  • MANSFIELD TOWN 1 - 3 TORQUAY UNITED
Spurs loanee Shaquile Coulthirst scored Torquay's third goal at Mansfield. Credit: Sean Dempsey/PA Archive

Torquay United have been relegated to the Conference after just five seasons back in the Football League.

Chris Hargreaves' men won 3-1 at Mansfield this afternoon, but results elsewhere mean Torquay are down with one game left to play.

Ashley Yeoman, Shaquile Coulthirst and an own goal secured the three points for the Gulls.

  • EXETER CITY 2 - 0 SCUNTHORPE UNITED
Craig Woodman gives Exeter the lead at St James Park. Credit: PA

Exeter City are safe from relegation after beating league leaders Scunthorpe at St James Park.

Craig Woodman's 25-yard strike into the top corner gave the Grecians the lead on the stroke of half-time.

Jimmy Keohane doubled the advantage early in the second half.

Despite the defeat, Scunthorpe are promoted to League One after fourth-placed Fleetwood drew with Southend.

Scunthorpe United celebrate their promotion back to League One on the St James Park pitch. Credit: PA
  • PLYMOUTH ARGYLE 1 - 1 HARTLEPOOL UNITED
Jason Banton scored Argyle's goal against Hartlepool. Credit: Sean Dempsey/PA Archive

Plymouth Argyle drew with Hartlepool at Home Park.

Jason Banton gave the Pilgrims the lead on the half hour, but Jack Barmby rescued a point for the visitors in the second half.

Torquay United have been relegated, but Exeter City are safe.

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