Tommy Elphick’s place in Albion’s defence is under threat after manager Russell Slade accused him of gifting Southend victory.

Substitute Francis Laurent ran away from centre-half Elphick to score Southend’s winner two minutes into stoppage time.

Slade is seething over Saturday’s 3-2 home defeat after the Seagulls came from behind twice with a Nicky Forster double, which took his tally to seven in five games.

He said: “It’s a sickener. I thought we dominated long periods of the second half and then Tommy Elphick really has given them a birthday present.

“Lapses of concentration cost us. That is just not good enough, that is not going to take us where I want to be or where the football club needs to be and that has got to change.

“I think we are doing some great things going forward. Bennett (Elliott) continues to progress and Nicky Forster is in great form at the moment but we cannot concede three at home and expect to win.”

Asked how difficult it is to eradicate defensive lapses, Slade said: “That’s simple, change personnel.

“There are people kidding themselves. I’ve got a changing room full of a lot of players really wanting to do well. There is no doubt about that but some of them are going to clearly get left behind.

“We defended well in the three previous games but defensive frailties came back to haunt us. We shouldn’t have found ourselves in a situation where we were chasing the game, because of a poor defensive display at times.

“We opened up a good side for fun and had some great opportunities to score three or four but it didn’t happen and what we can’t do then is concede three goals like that – we have got to be absolutely solid.

“We will work harder, that’s my way. The boys know that and it will be morning, noon and night now, that’s it.”