Brighton promise to counter Stoke's power by 'passing them off the park'

Sussex has never exactly been regarded as a footballing hotbed, but this afternoon for the first time in the competition's history they will have two sides in the FA Cup fifth round.

Crawley Town may be attracting most of the attention this weekend, but Brighton, the leaders of League One under the blossoming stewardship of Gus Poyet, are better placed to create an upset against Premier League opponents.

"It's brilliant for the county really," said Tommy Elphick, the Brighton defender. "Not only [Crawley's] FA Cup run but also how well they're doing in their league. To have two Football League sides in Sussex would be a major boost. I'm sure they'll get a good following at Old Trafford. Good luck to them."

Poyet's side face a tough – and surely extremely physical challenge – against Stoke City at the Britannia Stadium, but their league form has instilled confidence throughout the side. "We're going to try and pass a Premier League team off the pitch like we do against a League One team," asserted Elphick.

Brighton's striker Chris Wood, the teenage Kiwi international on loan from West Bromwich Albion, is well aware of what is coming their way. "We've been training to cope with them and how they play. It's going to be a big occasion for the lads and a big crowd which is something we've got to overcome," said Wood. "Any team can beat any team on the day as we have proved by beating two Championship sides, and now we have to beat a Premier League side."

Brighton have already beaten Portsmouth and Watford and are now one win from getting through to the quarter-finals for only the third time in their history.

Poyet, who is quickly making a name for himself in management, said he was prepared for what Stoke – and Rory Delap in particular – could "throw" at them but insisted that he had no intentions of adapting the way his team play.

The Uruguayan, an FA Cup winner with Chelsea in 2000, said: "I'm expecting them to put us under pressure and to use their strength. They are very powerful and difficult to deal with, not only with the balls into the box and throw-ins, but in general they are powerful players. They are quick and good technically.

"We need to deal with that because there is a big difference between the two teams. We are going to play our game, we are not going to change at all."

Life and Style
Steve Shaw shows Kate how to get wet behind the ears and how to align her neck
healthSteven Shaw - the 'Buddha of Breaststroke' - applies Alexander Technique to the watery sport
Sport
footballShirt then goes on sale on Gumtree
Voices
Terry Sue-Patt as Benny in the BBC children’s soap ‘Grange Hill’
voicesGrace Dent on Grange Hill and Terry Sue-Patt
Arts and Entertainment
The sight of a bucking bronco in the shape of a pink penis was too much for Hollywood actor and gay rights supporter Martin Sheen, prompting him to boycott a scene in the TV series Grace and Frankie
tv
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine