Team: Smithies, Onuoha, Hall, Hill (Chery), Perch, Henry, Faurlin, Phillips, Luongo, Hoilett (Polter), Washington (El Khayati)
Subs Not Used: Gladwin, Kpekawa, Petrasso, Gladwin
Attendance: 25,411 (including 1,109 R’s fans)
Anthony Knockaert inspired Brighton to an easy victory over QPR, leaving them only outside the automatic promotion places on goal difference. The Frenchman curled home a superb free kick to put the Seagulls in front.
Jiri Shalak thumped in from 30 yards and Connor Goldson headed home a third before Knockaert completed the rout.
Brighton’s win draws them level on points with second-placed Burnley on 84 points, after the Clarets drew 1-1 at Turf Moor.
Boro remain two points clear at the top, but Chris Hughton’s Albion, who hammered Fulham 5-0 on Friday, have now won six of their last seven matches and are firmly in the hunt for a Premier League place.
With each side having three games left to play, Brighton have also cut Burnley’s goal difference advantage to four after this latest goal spree.
It was a stuttering start by the hosts, with chances few and far between before Knockaert settled their nerves by finding the top corner in first-half stoppage time.
That seemed to knock Rangers’ confidence who went close in the opening period through Conor Washington and Matt Phillips, and Shalak’s spectacular first goal for the Seagulls, all but ended the game as a contest.
Goldson’s towering header from a corner and Knockaert’s slick finish confirmed Brighton’s dominance, and they have now lost just once in their last 17 matches.
Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink’s visitors, who have now lost two and drawn six of their last eight away games, have dropped one place in the table to 12th after Leeds beat Wolves 2-1.
Brighton manager Chris Hughton: “I hope it goes to the last game because it will mean we would have won our next two matches.”
“No one knows what is going to happen. It is certainly more enjoyable than being at the other end of the table.”
QPR manager Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink: “Chris Hughton has done a magnificent job and Brighton are a good side – after they scored the first, they looked invincible.”
“They got into their stride and, after the first-half when we were quite good we couldn’t get into our stride. As free-flowing and good as Brighton were, the first goal was key in the game.”
“I must say, though, that I’m quite disappointed about the second and third goals and the fourth was offside,”