MATT TARGETT hit the bullseye with a dramatic stoppage time winner for Aston Villa.
The £11.5 million former Southampton man latched onto a pass from Jack Grealish to score his first goal for his new club.
It completed a superb turnaround against the 10-man Seagulls – and ensured Dean Smith’s first anniversary as manager was marked in fitting style.
But opposite number Graham Potter was left to rue a first-half red card for Aaron Mooy – at a time when his team were in front and completely in control.
They led through Adam Webster’s header and looked likely to claim all the points until the Aussie midfielder was given a second booking.
They will be sick to come away with nothing but credit to Villa though for the way they hit back – with a comeback that typified Smith’s spell in charge.
He was appointed at this time in 2018 when his boyhood club were four points outside of the Championship play-offs.
The former Brentford boss – together with assistant John Terry – have been the catalyst behind their promotion and promising start to life back in the top flight.
Yet it was Albion who made by far the better start with Mooy seeing an early shot deflected wide and Aaron Connolly just off target with another effort.
The young Irish forward was the hero against Tottenham earlier this month but this time his radar was just off after a cross by Dan Burn.
Even so, it came as no surprise as the visitors took the lead midway through the first-half as Pascal Gross floated a free-kick to the back post.
Adam Webster sneaked around the back and his thumping header went across Tom Heaton and into the far corner.
Seagulls keeper Mat Ryan had to deal with a Conor Hourihane free-kick which bounced awkwardly for him but most of the chances were coming at the other end.
Neal Maupay’s low shot was pushed away by Heaton and the England keeper dashed out to deny Connolly as he went through on goal.
A second goal looked on the cards for the visitors – until the red card for Mooy changed the flow of the game.
The Aussie midfielder had been booked for a foul on Bjorn Engels when he went in wildly on Grealish.
Replays showed the ex-Huddersfield man had tried to pull out of the challenge – but it was hard to argue with the yellow card.
That gave Villa a way back in and John McGinn was only denied by his own player Wesley who blocked his goalbound effort.
The Scot continued to pose a threat and pulled a ball back for Hourihane whose left-footed shot flew past Ryan for what looked to be the equaliser.
The celebrations were cut short though as VAR had spotted an elbow from Wesley into the face of Ryan in the build up to the goal.
For a third time this season, Villa had seen a goal chalked off by the technology.
It didn’t seem to affect them too much though as Wesley kept his head up to spot Frederic Guilbert over-lapping down the right.
His low cross picked out Grealish who was able to bundle the ball home from close range to score the leveller in first-half stoppage time.
Villa should have completed the turnaround soon after the break as Hourihane’s shot was smartly saved by Ryan and Anwar El Ghazi smashed the rebound over the bar.
The visitors continued to play their game despite being a man down and Martin Montoya could have put them back in front but his shot was straight at Heaton.
Villa hoped VAR might do them a favour when they appealed for handball as McGinn’s shot hit Shane Duffy – but the replays clearly showed it hit the Irishman on his back.
Sub Keinan Davis was denied by Ryan as Albion looked set to hang on for a point.
But then with just seconds remaining, Grealish found space on the left and slipped a ball through for Targett who lifted his shot over Ryan from a tight angle.
Cue wild celebrations in the stands and no doubt Smith – along with his Villa mad family – enjoyed the moment more than most.