(Reuters) – Cardiff City earned a Premier League lifeline when they won 2-0 at Brighton and Hove Albion on Tuesday to close within two points of the south coast club and keep the relegation battle alive.
Cardiff had lost six of their previous seven games but, knowing that anything but a victory would probably end their survival hopes, played with confidence from the start.
They went ahead after 22 minutes when Nathaniel Mendez-Laing curled in a superb shot from the edge of the box after starting the move inside his own half.
Brighton, who were thrashed 5-0 at home by Bournemouth on Saturday, looked edgy and went 2-0 down when Sean Morrison headed in a free kick five minutes into the second half.
Although the home team ramped up the pressure in the latter stages, a late Glenn Murray header against a post was the closest they came as Cardiff held out for a potentially priceless victory.
The win takes Cardiff to 31 points from 34 games, with Brighton on 33 from 33. Southampton are on 36 points from 33 while Fulham and Huddersfield Town are already relegated.
(Reporting by Mitch Phillips, editing by Pritha Sarkar)