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Bissouma fires Seagulls to win

Brighton 2 Blackpool 1

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Brighton's Yves Bissouma scores his side's first goal. Photo: Reuters

Brighton's Yves Bissouma scores his side's first goal. Photo: Reuters

Brighton's Yves Bissouma scores his side's first goal. Photo: Reuters

Graham Potter was growing tired of Yves Bissouma's wayward shooting before the midfielder stylishly set Brighton on course to an FA Cup win over Blackpool.

Mali international Bissouma had been off target with a couple of early efforts but made amends in eye-catching fashion by thundering into the top-left corner from fully 30 yards. A fortuitous second-half winner from Steven Alzate deservedly sent the Seagulls into round five after Gary Madine levelled for the League One visitors.

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Blackpool's Gary Madine celebrates scoring a leveller with Jerry Yates. Photo: Reuters

Blackpool's Gary Madine celebrates scoring a leveller with Jerry Yates. Photo: Reuters

Blackpool's Gary Madine celebrates scoring a leveller with Jerry Yates. Photo: Reuters

 

Having bit his tongue as Bissouma lined up the stunning opener, Albion head coach Potter was delighted to be surprised.

"We're getting a bit frustrated with him because he had a couple of shots before that that were scuffed along the floor," said Potter.

"And, when he shot, I was nearly close to getting frustrated again - and then you see it fly in the top corner, and it's hard to argue with that. He keeps telling me he's got that quality and that ability to strike from distance and we're happy for him, happy that he's contributed to the game and us getting through to the next round."

Bissouma has been, arguably, Brighton's standout performer this season, prompting links with a host of Europe's top clubs, including Real Madrid, Liverpool and Arsenal.

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Blackpool's Jordan Lawrence-Gabriel and Brighton's Dan Burn battle for the ball. Photo: PA

Blackpool's Jordan Lawrence-Gabriel and Brighton's Dan Burn battle for the ball. Photo: PA

Blackpool's Jordan Lawrence-Gabriel and Brighton's Dan Burn battle for the ball. Photo: PA

 

After retrieving Alzate's loose pass, Bissouma sidestepped Seasiders midfielder Matty Virtue before unleashing a dipping drive that endeared him to Potter once more in the 27th minute.

Potter believes the 24-year-old has the potential to play Champions League football but insists he is not currently concerned about him being sold.

"He's got that quality (to play in the Champions League), he's got those attributes that you need at that level," said Potter.

"It's about him being consistent enough to do that. I think he's made steps with that, but there's still more to do and more to come. But, from his perspective, I think he's happy here, he wants to help the team, so we are quite relaxed about everything."

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Blackpool's Beryly Lubala stays ahead of Brighton's Joel Veltman. Photo: PA

Blackpool's Beryly Lubala stays ahead of Brighton's Joel Veltman. Photo: PA

Blackpool's Beryly Lubala stays ahead of Brighton's Joel Veltman. Photo: PA

 

After Alzate deflected in Alexis Mac Allister's long-range effort in the 58th minute, Brighton wasted a host of chances to guarantee progression.

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