SLIDESHOW: Brighton scare Arsenal in FA Cup

Brighton pushed FA Cup holders Arsenal all the way at the Amex Stadium.

Theo Walcott and Mesut Ozil gave the Gunners a 2-0 lead before Chris O’Grady pulled one back on 50 minutes.

Brighton v Arrsenal. Picture by Angela Brinkhurst

Brighton v Arrsenal. Picture by Angela Brinkhurst

Tomas Rosicky’s sublime volley made it 3-1 before Sam Baldock set up and exciting finish.

Photographer Angela Brinkhurst was there to catch the action.

Here is Brighton fan Harry Hawthorne’s opinion on the game:

Brighton may have lost their encounter against Arsenal on Sunday evening but similarly to their last two games, including a win against second placed Ipswich, many positives can be drawn from the performance. There is no disgrace in losing to Arsenal, they’re one of the best teams in England, if not Europe, and showed it during the game. Their movement around the box and technical precision was outstanding, and the way they won the ball back off Brighton highlighted the experience and tactical understanding they hold. However, it is apparent that under Chris Hughton’s stewardship this season that Brighton have gained something key that they didn’t possess under Sami Hyypia, an unbreakable and quite awesome persistence. The last twenty minutes of the game emphasised their new found qualities as Albion showed no respect to their stellar opponents, presenting Arsenal constant tests that they just about managed to cope with. If Brighton can replicate this throughout the rest of the season, there’s more than a fair chance that they can turn their season around.

Brighton found themselves with an even tougher challenge than already seemed apparent when Theo Walcott snuck in behind the Albion defence in the second minute before finding the bottom corner with precision. Following the goal, Arsenal settled themselves in to the game, not allowing the Seagulls to have any slither of play. This was then built upon by the Gunners when a winding run from man of the match Tomas Rosicky lead to a great chance for Mesut Ozil in the box, his finish was cool and accurate in to the bottom corner. The Seagull’s only real chance of the half came to Sam Baldock on the half an hour mark, a scrap in the box meant that he was unmarked with room to shoot, but his finish was struck over the bar.

The second half however saw Brighton come out with real fire in their bellies. Chris O’Grady made it look as if a comeback could be on when he spun Nacho Monreal in the box and rifled a powerful shot in to the near post corner. Nevertheless, Arsenal showed their quality once again as a lovely one-two allowed Rosicky to volley home a great strike. But Brighton were beginning to show that they are not a side to lie down and give in. Their persistence paid off as Sam Baldock’s cool clipped finish made it a tight last fifteen minutes. But despite their very best efforts Arsenal hung on, batting away anything Brighton threw at them. A loss? Yes. But a bad one? No way, Brighton can be proud.