FA Cup - Third Round
Brighton1Reading0

Brighton & Hove Albion 1-0 Reading

Andrew Crofts

Andrew Crofts scored with a deflected strike as Brighton claimed a deserved FA Cup third-round win against fellow Championship side Reading.

Keith Andrews, Solomon March and Ashley Barnes all hit the crossbar for a dominant home side in the first half.

The breakthrough finally came as Crofts' 32nd-minute shot went in off Royals defender Alex Pearce.

Pearce had claims for a penalty rejected after the interval, while Kemy Agustien went close for Brighton.

Both sides played out an uninspiring 0-0 draw when they met in the Championship in September, but Brighton started with real purpose this time at Amex Stadium.

Andrews was at the centre of the early action, forcing Royals goalkeeper Adam Federici into a brilliant save from a deflected shot before hitting the bar after a driving run into the penalty area.

The Reading crossbar was struck twice more in the same attack soon after, first via the impressive Federici after a 20-yard March shot, and then from Barnes's headed rebound.

Brighton continued to be the stronger side and got the goal their pressure deserved when midfielder Crofts' shot from outside the area took a huge deflection off Pearce.

The defender was involved again at the start of the second half as Reading appealed for a penalty after his header from a corner appeared to strike an arm.

The hosts were soon back in control, and Australia international Federici produced another superb stop to keep out midfielder Agustien's effort from the left.

Reading then went close to forcing an unlikely equaliser late on when striker Adam Le Fondre headed over when unmarked.

Brighton & Hove Albion assistant head coach Nathan Jones told BBC Sussex:

Media playback is not supported on this device

Nathan Jones: Brighton assistant coach on Reading win

"The first half was as dominant as we've been all season and we must have hit the post and bar three or four times. We had chances that we created and we were fluent. It was very pleasing.

"I want to make a special mention to Adam Chicksen and Solly March because it's been tough on them, they've been training hard and showing great attitude.

"This is a first-team squad, a Championship squad and we know we are proud of the squad and we make changes not to weaken the team. We want to make sure that the to prepare well for the next five games."

Media playback is not supported on this device

Nigel Adkins: Reading manager on Brighton defeat

Reading manager Nigel Adkins:

"[On links to the West Brom manager's job] West Brom don't have a manager but all my focus is to try and improve Reading. All the energy and focus is to us.

"I wanted a good cup run but unfortunately a deflected goal has done us today.

"We've got a fantastic board and the chairman will do everything that is right for the club. We've got an opportunity to regroup and maybe get one or two in because our focus is to get promoted."

Check out a photo gallery from all of today's FA Cup fixtures on the BBC Sport Facebook page.

Line-ups

Brighton

  • 1Brezovan
  • 14Calderón
  • 15Chicksen
  • 4Andrews
  • 3GreerSubstituted forDunkat 67'minutes
  • 6El-Abd
  • 8Crofts
  • 10AgustienSubstituted forOrlandiat 64'minutes
  • 9Barnes
  • 27MarchSubstituted forLua Luaat 79'minutesBooked at 90mins
  • 18Forster-Caskey

Substitutes

  • 5Dunk
  • 11Orlandi
  • 16Ankergren
  • 17Ward
  • 19Ulloa
  • 25Lua Lua
  • 38Ince

Reading

  • 1Federici
  • 2Gunter
  • 17Gorkss
  • 25Taylor
  • 3KellySubstituted forWilliamsat 73'minutes
  • 5Pearce
  • 20Guthrie
  • 37Obita
  • 9Le Fondre
  • 22BlackmanSubstituted forDrentheat 57'minutesBooked at 81mins
  • 12McClearySubstituted forPogrebnyakat 85'minutes

Substitutes

  • 7Pogrebnyak
  • 10Drenthe
  • 21McCarthy
  • 23Williams
  • 39Tanner
  • 47Sweeney
  • 49Long
Referee:
Chris Foy
Attendance:
20,696

Match Stats

Home TeamBrightonAway TeamReading
Possession
Home53%
Away47%
Shots
Home18
Away5
Shots on Target
Home5
Away0
Corners
Home5
Away5
Fouls
Home14
Away11

Live Text

Match ends, Brighton and Hove Albion 1, Reading 0.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Brighton and Hove Albion 1, Reading 0.

Booking

Kazenga Lua Lua (Brighton and Hove Albion) is shown the yellow card.

Corner, Brighton and Hove Albion. Conceded by Danny Guthrie.

Attempt missed. Danny Guthrie (Reading) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right.

Attempt missed. Jake Taylor (Reading) left footed shot from the centre of the box is too high.

Attempt missed. Kazenga Lua Lua (Brighton and Hove Albion) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right.

Attempt missed. Adam Le Fondre (Reading) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses the top right corner.

Ashley Barnes (Brighton and Hove Albion) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Kaspars Gorkss (Reading).

Foul by Íñigo Calderón (Brighton and Hove Albion).

Jordan Obita (Reading) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Substitution

Substitution, Reading. Pavel Pogrebnyak replaces Garath McCleary.

Hand ball by Royston Drenthe (Reading).

Attempt blocked. Kazenga Lua Lua (Brighton and Hove Albion) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Íñigo Calderón (Brighton and Hove Albion) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Garath McCleary (Reading).

Booking

Royston Drenthe (Reading) is shown the yellow card.

Ashley Barnes (Brighton and Hove Albion) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Royston Drenthe (Reading).

Foul by Keith Andrews (Brighton and Hove Albion).

Daniel Williams (Reading) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Substitution

Substitution, Brighton and Hove Albion. Kazenga Lua Lua replaces Solly March.

Attempt missed. Ashley Barnes (Brighton and Hove Albion) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right.

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Adam El-Abd.

Foul by Ashley Barnes (Brighton and Hove Albion).

Kaspars Gorkss (Reading) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt missed. Jake Taylor (Reading) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right.

Foul by Keith Andrews (Brighton and Hove Albion).

Royston Drenthe (Reading) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Adam El-Abd.

Substitution

Substitution, Reading. Daniel Williams replaces Stephen Kelly.

Attempt missed. Lewis Dunk (Brighton and Hove Albion) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left.

Corner, Brighton and Hove Albion. Conceded by Alex Pearce.

Attempt blocked. Jake Forster-Caskey (Brighton and Hove Albion) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Adam Chicksen (Brighton and Hove Albion) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Chris Gunter (Reading).

Foul by Jake Forster-Caskey (Brighton and Hove Albion).

Danny Guthrie (Reading) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Íñigo Calderón.

goal

Top Stories

Get Inspired Activity Finder

Run by the BBC and partners

Find ways to get active near you: