Brighton and Hove Albion youngsters made to fight by Chichester City

Chichester City fought to the end but Brighton's under-23s nicked a second half goal to progress into the last eight of the Sussex Senior Cup, writes Liam Gallagher.

Chichester City and Brighton's youngsters do battle / Picture: Martin Denyer
Chichester City and Brighton's youngsters do battle / Picture: Martin Denyer

After a dramatic comeback victory away to VCD Athletic at the weekend, Chichester welcomed Brighton to Oaklands Park for what promised to be an eventful clash in the Sussex Senior Cup. Both teams opted to field young sides, with goalkeeper Oliver Carroll making his first team debut for the home side. Eric-Georges Dellaud also started for Chichester, occupying the left back position.

Both teams started positively with strong spells of play early on. A ball whipped into the box by Ethan Pritchard in the 3rd minute just managed to evade Scott Jones, with the No9 struggling to latch on to the cross. Jones looked to return the favour in the 14th minute by playing a ball into Pritchard, but he was unable to bend the ball into the bottom corner.

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Brighton looked to respond with a Kavanagh header in the 28th minute. The young defender had a good opportunity to give the seagulls the lead with a header, but his effort just skimmed the top of the crossbar.

Action from Brighton's win at Chi City / Picture: Martin Denyer

Both teams battled on, with Chichester starting to gain confidence going forward. Another ball crossed in by Pritchard in the 42nd minute came back off the post with Brighton struggling to deal with the pace of the young forward.

The second half saw Chichester come out strong again with the home side getting more concrete chances at goal. A 53rd minute headed ball from Jones found its way to the feet of Emmett Dunn whose first-time effort took a deflection which was saved by the Brighton keeper.

The young Canadian had another chance at goal just minutes later, with a headed chance from a free kick. Hutchings whipped the ball across the box and Dunn connected well with it. However Talley was able to collect the ball with ease, preventing a Chichester goal.

After a strong few minutes from Chichester, Brighton started to get more opportunities going forward, and the deadlock was eventually broken. Carroll, who had been solid all game, was unable to stop a Todd Miller strike from going in the back of the net, and the visitors took the lead around the 70th minute mark.

Chichester looked to respond by bringing on forwards Overton and Haitham for the final part of the match. The change nearly paid off with Overton coming close in the 79th minute. The in-form striker flicked a ball towards goal, but it ended up rolling just wide. This seemed to be Chichester’s final chance of the match as Brighton looked to see out their one goal lead.

Oakwell was bought on in the final minutes to try to help the side, but they were unable to break down the visitors who were able to hang on into the 93rd minute to claim the victory.

Chichester will now look to carry on their superb league form with a home fixture against Faversham town at the weekend.