Seagulls swoop for Championship scalp number two

Watford 0 Brighton 1

For Brighton fans it was a second Championship scalp. For the manager, Gus Poyet, it was proof that his League One promotion contenders are ready to play in the division above.

Ashley Barnes scored the winner, but it was thanks to a large slice of clumsiness from the home goalkeeper Rene Gilmartin that Watford's interest in the competition ended yesterday.

Poyet admits promotion to the Championship is the priority, but this, which followed a victory in the previous round over Portsmouth, helped show the Uruguayan that his side do not have far to go to compete with the second tier.

He said: "That's what I used this game for – to test the side. We have a lot of players finishing their contracts this year and it is very difficult to see whether you are going to make it in the Championship or not with these players.

"It proved to me now we have plenty of players who can play in the Championship – and play the way I want, which was the main thing."

The Brighton manager knows what a cup run can do to a side's form, having watched Leeds' League One campaign stutter last year following their third-round victory over Manchester United and a draw against Tottenham Hotspur in the fourth.

But he said: "If it was a lower division team at home I would have played a totally different team. I saw what happened to Leeds last season, they were beating Premier League teams in the FA Cup and losing every game in the League. I didn't want that. We are not doing that, so I am pleased, but I hope it doesn't change. The priority is going up."

Barnes will go on record as scoring the winner, but Gilmartin may as well godown with an assist, after his Robert Green moment let the ball slip through his handsinto the net.

Chris Wood, outstanding for Poyet's side, could have had two himself but for the crossbar and Lloyd Doyley's last-ditch tackle.

The Watford manager Malky Mackay refused to blame Gilmartin, but admitted his men had an off day.

He was right. His side are usually as good at passing football as Brighton were yesterday – and rarely shy of a goal themselves – but it took until the 55th minute before they registered a shot on target, through Martin Taylor's weak effort.

Mackay said: "It was a below-par performance. We didn't test Brighton as well as we should have. The fact that we gave them a goal – and we had two or three chances to protect that move before it got to the goalkeeper – summed it up really.

"Rene has been a good figure for us and in training and in games his standards have been so high, so it would be remiss of me to blame him for today. Some days you have off days and today was one of those."

Attendance: 14,519

Referee: Eddie Ilderton

Man of the match: Wood

News
people And here is why...
Arts and Entertainment
Amazon has added a cautionary warning to Tom and Jerry cartoons on its streaming service
tv
Voices
voicesBy the man who has
Sport
Arsene Wenger tried to sign Eden Hazard
footballAfter 18 years with Arsenal, here are 18 things he has still never done as the Gunners' manager
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
The new Windows 10 Start Menu
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson star in The Twilight Saga but will not be starring in the new Facebook mini-movies
tvKristen Stewart and Stephenie Meyer will choose female directrs
Arts and Entertainment
Hilary North's 'How My Life Has Changed', 2001
books(and not a Buzzfeed article in sight)
News
William Hague
people... when he called Hague the county's greatest
News
More than 90 years of car history are coming to an end with the abolition of the paper car-tax disc
newsThis and other facts you never knew about the paper circle - completely obsolete today
Arts and Entertainment
There has been a boom in ticket sales for female comics, according to an industry survey
comedyFirst national survey reveals Britain’s comedic tastes
Arts and Entertainment
Twerking girls: Miley Cyrus's video for 'Wrecking Ball'
arts + ents
Arts and Entertainment
Ed Sheeran performs at his Amazon Front Row event on Tuesday 30 September
musicHe spotted PM at private gig
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

Ebola outbreak: The children orphaned by the virus – then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection

The children orphaned by Ebola...

... then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection
Pride: Are censors pandering to homophobia?

Are censors pandering to homophobia?

US film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence
The magic of roundabouts

Lords of the rings

Just who are the Roundabout Appreciation Society?
Why do we like making lists?

Notes to self: Why do we like making lists?

Well it was good enough for Ancient Egyptians and Picasso...
Hong Kong protests: A good time to open a new restaurant?

A good time to open a new restaurant in Hong Kong?

As pro-democracy demonstrators hold firm, chef Rowley Leigh, who's in the city to open a new restaurant, says you couldn't hope to meet a nicer bunch
Paris Fashion Week: Karl Lagerfeld leads a feminist riot on 'Boulevard Chanel'

Paris Fashion Week

Lagerfeld leads a feminist riot on 'Boulevard Chanel'
Bruce Chatwin's Wales: One of the finest one-day walks in Britain

Simon Calder discovers Bruce Chatwin's Wales

One of the finest one-day walks you could hope for - in Britain
10 best children's nightwear

10 best children's nightwear

Make sure the kids stay cosy on cooler autumn nights in this selection of pjs, onesies and nighties
Manchester City vs Roma: Five things we learnt from City’s draw at the Etihad

Manchester City vs Roma

Five things we learnt from City’s Champions League draw at the Etihad
Martin Hardy: Mike Ashley must act now and end the Alan Pardew reign

Trouble on the Tyne

Ashley must act now and end Pardew's reign at Newcastle, says Martin Hardy
Isis is an hour from Baghdad, the Iraq army has little chance against it, and air strikes won't help

Isis an hour away from Baghdad -

and with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

The exhibition nods to rich and potentially brilliant ideas, but steps back
Last chance to see: Half the world’s animals have disappeared over the last 40 years

Last chance to see...

The Earth’s animal wildlife population has halved in 40 years
So here's why teenagers are always grumpy - and it's not what you think

Truth behind teens' grumpiness

Early school hours mess with their biological clocks
Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?

Hacked photos: the third wave

Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?