Match Of The Week: Brighton & Hove Albion 2-1 Hartlepool United

What a curious season it has been for Brighton & Hove Albion. On the one hand work finally started on their new stadium at Falmer, they are ninety minutes from Wembley and they knocked Manchester City out of the League Cup. On the other, though, they have slumped down the League One table after an encouraging start and Leyton Orient’s surprise win at Franchise last week dropped them into the relegation places. This constitutes something of a crisis. Relegation would leave them hovering above relegation from the Football League. The unthinkable – starting their life at Falmer as a non-league club – suddenly becomes a hideous (if slight) possibility. Hartlepool United have spent much of the last ten years bouncing between the two bottom divisions of the Football League. Having spent much of the 1990s narrowly avoiding relegation to the Conference (between 1995 and 1999 they didn’t finish above seventeenth place in what is now League Two), they were promoted in 2003 and then finished in sixth place in League One two seasons in a row, losing out in the play-offs both times. They were unexpectedly related in 2006, but were promoted straight back the following season and finished in mid-table last season. At the time of writing, they are again sitting just above the relegation places. A handful of wins between now and the end of the season...

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