Arsenal’s title hopes suffered a devastating blow after losing at Brighton to leave leaders Manchester City one win away from a fifth Premier League title in six seasons.
The Gunners will have to respond after City 3-0 win over Everton Earlier on Sunday Mikel Arteta’s side were left trailing by four points in the title race.
In a deeply disappointing day for Arsenal, Leandro Trossard hit the bar against his former club while Martin Odegaard and Bukayo Saka both went close before Julio Enciso’s close-range header put Brighton ahead.
Substitute Deniz Undav doubled the lead after lobbing Aaron Ramsdale in the 86th minute before Pervis Estupinan added to Arsenal’s woes with Brighton’s third in the 96th minute.
City will win the Premier League title next Sunday in front of their own fans if they beat Chelsea at home (16:00 BST), although Arsenal beat Nottingham Forest at the City Ground on Saturday (17:00 30).
However, City will be confirmed as champions without a game on Saturday if the Gunners lose at Forest.
In a game full of bad fouls, Arsenal lost Brazil’s Gabriel Martinelli to injury in the first half after a foul by Brighton’s Ecuador midfielder Moises Caicedo, who the Gunners tried to sign in January.
Brighton, chasing a place in Europe for the first time, came close to Enciso before the Paraguay forward stunned the Emirates with his 51st-minute goal.
The win lifts the Seagulls above Aston Villa and Tottenham to sixth on 58 points, four behind fifth-placed Liverpool with a game in hand.
Arsenal’s most points are 87, while City have 85 with matches against Chelsea (home), Brighton (away) and Brentford (away) to come.
Arsenal’s title challenge is over
Arsenal’s players took to their knees after the full-time whistle, the realization quickly sinking in that their title aspirations were over after being ripped apart by Brighton.
The Gunners deserve a lot of credit for the way they have pushed Manchester City into the title race but their chase is on the verge of extinction after a disastrous defeat at the business end of the season.
Manchester City’s comfortable win at Everton earlier on Sunday opened up a four-point gap at the top but this time Arsenal were unable to respond to the pressure put on them by Pep Guardiola’s Treble-chasing team.
There were almost 40 minutes left when Enciso opened the scoring but the Gunners failed to find the net for the first time since February 4.
Arteta sent on Eddie Nketiah and Emile Smith Rowe to try and salvage a point but the Arsenal boss, shown a yellow card by referee Andy Madley, saw his team concede two more goals. while the home side suffered a comprehensive defeat.
More to follow.
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Brighton & Hove Albion
Squad number18Player nameWelbeck
Squad number21Player nameUndav
Squad number40Player nameGood evening
- 8ØdegaardReplaced bySmith Roweon 77′MINUTE
- 20JorginhoReplaced bypartyon 60′MINUTEBooked in 88mins
- 34XhakaReplaced byNelsonon 60′MINUTE
- 9gabriel jesusReplaced byNketiahon 77′MINUTE
- 11MartinelliReplaced byTrossardon 20′MINUTE
- 10Smith Rowe
- 21Fabio Vieira
- 30EstupiñanBooked in 34mins
- 13placeBooked in 55mins
- 27GilmourReplaced byWelbeckon 60′MINUTE
- 10Mac Allister
- 20EnchantedReplaced byUndavon 82′MINUTE
- 28FergusonReplaced byGood eveningon 77′MINUTE
- 29from Heke
- 40Good evening
- Andy Madley
The match ended, Arsenal 0, Brighton and Hove Albion 3.
Second Half ends, Arsenal 0, Brighton and Hove Albion 3.
Goal! Arsenal 0, Brighton and Hove Albion 3. Pervis Estupiñán (Brighton and Hove Albion) left footed shot from the center of the box to the top center of the goal.
Test survived. Deniz Undav (Brighton and Hove Albion) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Danny Welbeck.
Attempt blocked. Reiss Nelson (Arsenal) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Thomas Partey.
Offside, Brighton and Hove Albion. Levi Colwill tried a through ball, but Pervis Estupiñán was caught offside.
Moisés Caicedo (Brighton and Hove Albion) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Reiss Nelson (Arsenal).
Attempt blocked. Kaoru Mitoma (Brighton and Hove Albion) right footed shot from the center of the box is blocked. Assisted by Deniz Undav.
Hand ball by Deniz Undav (Brighton and Hove Albion).
Thomas Partey (Arsenal) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Kaoru Mitoma (Brighton and Hove Albion) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Thomas Partey (Arsenal).
Goal! Arsenal 0, Brighton and Hove Albion 2. Deniz Undav (Brighton and Hove Albion) left footed shot from the center of the box to the center of the goal. Assisted by Pascal Groß.
Foul by Deniz Undav (Brighton and Hove Albion).
Thomas Partey (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Test survived. Deniz Undav (Brighton and Hove Albion) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the center of the goal.
The attempt failed. Gabriel Magalhães (Arsenal) right footed shot from the center of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Thomas Partey following a corner.
Corner, Arsenal. Lewis Dunk admits.
Attempt blocked. Reiss Nelson (Arsenal) left footed shot from a difficult angle on the left is blocked. Assisted by Eddie Nketiah.
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