- Albion progress to the Emirates FA Cup fourth round
- Beram Kayal scores on his return to the side
- The Seagulls secure a sixth consecutive victory in all competitions
- Tomer Hemed nets Albion’s second in the second half
Brighton & Hove Albion secured their place in the Emirates FA Cup fourth round after a 2-0 victory over Milton Keynes Dons at the Amex.
A goal in each half for Israeli duo Beram Kayal and Tomer Hemed ensured a safe passage to the last 32 of the competition, with Kayal returning to the side for the first time in over three months.
Chris Hughton made 11 changes to the side that beat Fulham on Monday, as Richie Towell, Uwe Huenemeier and Connor Goldson all gained valuable game time.
It took little time for Kayal to make an impact, as his low driven shot from the edge of the box gave Albion the lead in the ninth minute after he was teed up by compatriot Tomer Hemed.
MK Dons pressed forward in search of an equaliser, but Ben Reeves couldn’t divert his shot on target from Chuks Aneke’s header across the box.
Rob Hunt press forward down the right-hand side for the Seagulls and found Hemed inside the area, but the striker couldn’t divert his header on target.
Towell attempted to double Brighton’s advantage with a speculative strike from distance, but Dons keeper David Martin made a comfortable save.
Hemed came close to getting a second goal for the Seagulls after Hunt picked him out with an in-swinging cross, but his effort was blocked.
The Dons came forward again through Reeves, who picked out Edward Upson, but his volley went wide of the left-hand post.
Steve Sidwell tried to increase Albion’s advantage with a glancing header from Jamie Murphy’s cross, but the ball went over the bar.
The Seagulls created the first chance after the re-start when Sam Adekugbe broke well down the left-hand side and found Solly March in space, but the winger fired over.
The winger was involved in the thick of the action again just moments later when he got past Joe Walsh on the left flank, but his cross was cleared behind for a corner. Then, from the subsequent set-piece, Goldson’s searching header fell onto the roof of the net.
Towell pressed forward for Albion and found Jamie Murphy inside the area, but he flashed an effort wide.
Hemed had a golden opportunity to put clear daylight between the sides when Kayal squared the ball across the area, but he blazed his shot over the bar.
Yet he made no mistake on 71 minutes when he was teed up by Kayal again and coolly headed the ball beyond Martin.
Hemed could’ve doubled his tally for the afternoon just a minute later, but Martin was on hand this time to make a low save down to his right.
Reeves was one of the liveliest players for MK Dons during the game and he tried his luck from distance with a shot that rose high over the target.
Kayal received a standing ovation in the 79th minute when he came off to be replaced by Rohan Ince.
The Seagulls saw out the closing stages with relative ease to secure their place in Monday night’s draw.
1ST PRIZE £450 - 1095
2ND PRIZE £50 - 3778
3RD PRIZE £25 - 3942
1ST GOAL TIME - 9TH MIN