Soccer-Scoreless draw enough for Brighton to leapfrog Man United into seventh in Premier League

BRIGHTON, England (Reuters) -Brighton & Hove Albion could only muster a point in a scoreless draw with Wolverhampton Wanderers on Monday but it was enough to lift them above Manchester United into seventh place in the Premier League table.

Roberto De Zerbi’s team, unbeaten in nine home games, are ahead of United on goal difference with both teams on 32 points after 21 games.

“Disappointed for the result, I think we deserved to win,” De Zerbi told TNT Sports. “But Wolves are a very good team with good players, especially in attack, we have a big respect for them.

“We have the target to be in the top 10,” the Italian added. “I think we are doing very well, I think we are happy.”

Gary O’Neil’s Wolves, who arrived at the Amex on the heels of three successive league wins and are unbeaten in six games in all competitions, are 11th on 29 points.

O’Neil said he felt more pride for his players than frustration despite the single point.

“The lads gave absolutely everything … the way the team approached it, how aggressive they were, how they stuck to the game plan, you couldn’t ask any more from them really,” he told TNT.

“Of course I would have liked us to score, loads and loads of really good opportunities and unfortunately we couldn’t take them, but a good point, a really good point.”

Neither side generated great chances in a drab first half, but the game came to life after the interval when Matheus Cunha forced Brighton keeper Jason Steele to pull off a terrific save, and then Steele smacked the rebound over the bar.

It was the first of a flurry of chances for both teams. Cunha had an opportunity to break the deadlock when he beat Steele who was well out of his net, but the Brazilian could not finish off the move and the game ended scoreless despite the combined total of 19 shots on target.

Brighton midfielder James Milner, who made his Premier League debut in 2002 at age 16, passed Ryan Giggs into second in all-time league appearances on Monday with 633 matches. He needs 20 more to equal Gareth Barry’s record.

“The game is the biggest thing tonight, games wise I’ve hopefully got a few more in me,” Milner told TNT.

“I’ve had some luck, I’ve worked hard and you have to enjoy it to put the work in every day. I’ve been fortunate to play for some great clubs.”

(Reporting by Lori Ewing, editing by Pritha Sarkar)