Brighton rock the Cherries in cup
- Michael Oliver
Quickfire first-half double paves the way for the Seagulls to progress to the fourth round
AFC Bournemouth exited the Emirates FA Cup at the third-round stage for the third year in succession after going down at the hands of Premier League rivals Brighton & Hove Albion.
The Seagulls rocked the Cherries when they forged into a two-goal lead thanks to first-half strikes from Anthony Knockaert and Yves Bissouma.
Knockaert opened the scoring with a left-foot shot having been teed up by Jurgen Locadia before Bissouma doubled their lead with a thunderous drive just three minutes later.
The two goals came after Lys Mousset had squandered a presentable chance to give the Cherries the lead, the Frenchman lifting his shot over the crossbar with the goal gaping.
And although Marc Pugh pulled one back for the hosts 10 minutes into the second half, Florin Andone's 63rd-minute header left Eddie Howe's team with a mountain to climb.
New loan signing Nathaniel Clyne was drafted in for his first start following his move from Liverpool yesterday.
But there was no place for fellow recruit Dominic Solanke who was ruled out by a minor hamstring injury.
Poole-raised Kyle Taylor was handed his first start, the teenage midfielder having featured as a substitute in last season’s FA Cup third-round replay defeat at Wigan.
Clyne and Taylor were two of nine changes made by manager Howe with Steve Cook and Ryan Fraser the only survivors from Wednesday’s 3-3 draw with Watford in the Premier League.
Jack Simpson's near-post header from a Fraser cross failed to trouble Brighton goalkeeper Jason Steele as the Cherries created the first chance after 11 minutes.
A surging run from Jordon Ibe ended with the frontman seeing his shot blocked by visiting defender Leon Balogun, with Cook heading wide from the resultant corner.
Dale Stephens received the first booking of the game after scything down Ibe before a sweeping move saw the Cherries fashion a gilt-edged opportunity to take the lead.
Ibe, picked out by Cook's raking pass, left his marker for dead before haring into the 18-yard box and trying his luck with a shot which was blocked.
And after the ball had fallen for Mousset, he fired over the crossbar with the goal at his mercy.
Brighton drew first blood through Knockaert after 31 minutes, the winger netting with a left-foot strike having been teed up by Locadia's layoff.
And the Seagulls doubled their lead just three minutes later when Bissouma's venomous effort from around 25 yards fizzed into the back of the net.
Locadia then saw his header from a Gaetan Bong's centre come back off the upright as the visitors looked for a third.
Taylor made way for David Brooks at the break as the Cherries looked to overturn the two-goal deficit in the second half.
And Pugh halved the arrears when his finely-taken effort from 20 yards whistled past Brighton goalkeeper Steele after 55 minutes, with Andrew Surman claiming the assist.
But disaster struck for the Cherries when Brighton restored their two-goal advantage through Andone who nodded home from close range after Shane Duffy had headed Knockaert's 63rd-minute corner back into the danger zone.
Brooks saw his piledriver beaten away by Steele as the Cherries searched for a route back into the tie before Pugh's curling shot flashed narrowly past the post.
Cook had a header cleared off the line in the closing stages after outjumping the Brighton defence to meet Pugh's corner.
The Cherries were made to pay for a miss by Lys Mousset which came just minutes before Brighton netted twice in quick succession.
Frenchman Mousset blazed his shot high over the crossbar from close range with the goal at his mercy after Jordon Ibe's blocked effort had fallen invitingly at his feet. Had he scored, it could have been a different story.
Nathaniel Clyne, signed on loan from Liverpool on the eve of the tie, turned in an assured debut at right-back, especially as he had not trained with his new team-mates.
The 27-year-old got forward to join the attack at every opportunity and looked solid in defence.