Liverpool captain Virgil van Dijk had advised the club’s emerging young stars to keep their feet on the ground – as he will be keeping an eye on them.

Eighteen-year-olds Jayden Danns and Lewis Koumas, sons of former Premier League professionals Neil and Jason, scored the goals which beat Southampton 3-0 to set up an FA Cup quarter-final at Manchester United.

The last week has seen academy players thrust into the spotlight with an injury crisis denying Jurgen Klopp the services of 13 first-team players – with Andy Robertson’s illness briefly adding to the issues – and after impressing in the Carabao Cup final win over Chelsea they were central figures against Saints.

Danns came off the bench to score twice in only his third appearance, all coming in the space of eight days, while Koumas was making his debut when he scored the opener.

Klopp cautioned about putting too much expectation on the teenagers and Van Dijk said the next step in their development was to build on their early breakthroughs.

“It was a big night for all of them and they should really take it in and enjoy it and see it as a start and really use it in every way,” said the 32-year-old defender, who admitted he felt old when “half my age” Trey Nyoni came off the bench.

“They all have quality and all can play good football but it is about showing your quality and it’s a start.

“For example, Trey at 16 years old, it is incredible. There will be so many ups and downs coming for him but he has to take it in as players (are) maybe coming back in the next weeks and months and it could be difficult for him (to get in the squad).

“He has to keep pushing and the same for the rest of the young boys. That should be the mentality and I am sure they will do that.

“In my career I’ve seen players who make their debuts after coming through the ranks and then disappear.

“Even learning from being around the first team is massive and you should soak it all in and don’t get carried away.

“They have to keep improving, keep working; staying humble is a very important thing but we have a great culture and I’m definitely one of the guys to make sure they keep doing that.”

To produce such a result with injuries biting hard, just three days after a gruelling 120 minutes at Wembley, was testament to the determination of the youngsters and the endurance of the senior players still able to turn out.

Van Dijk played only the first half as Klopp agreed a pre-match plan for him to be replaced by Ibrahima Konate after his influential performance against Chelsea.

 

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And the Dutchman revealed one of the perks of being captain was that he got to take the trophy home on their arrival back on Merseyside.

 

“I wanted to show my kids in person, close up,” he said.

“I put it on the kitchen counter when I came home and left it there. I’ve got four kids and they were so happy to see it and then I took it back to training the next day so everyone could take a picture with it at the AXA (training centre) as they have all played their part in the success we have had and they deserve to be holding the trophy.”

Conor Gallagher wanted to give Chelsea fans something to celebrate after their 3-2 victory over Leeds in the FA Cup fifth round at Stamford Bridge.

The Blues bounced back from Sunday’s Carabao Cup defeat to Liverpool thanks to goals from Nicolas Jackson, Mykhailo Mudryk and Gallagher.

Gallagher, who scored a 90th-minute winner with a tidy finish in the box past Illan Meslier, dedicated the victory Chelsea’s supporters.

“Sunday was a big disappointment and we wanted to bounce back and give the fans something to celebrate,” Gallagher told Chelsea’s official website. “Thankfully we did that last night.

“It was a great atmosphere. Leeds fans are always very passionate and loud, but I think our fans were great as well, especially considering the disappointment the other day.

“So I have to say thank you to them and hopefully we gave them something to celebrate.”

Virgil van Dijk scored the only goal in the 118th minute at Wembley as Mauricio Pochettino’s side sustained a big blow to their campaign.

Gallagher admitted it has been difficult to overcome the defeat following the short turnaround between the two games, with the FA Cup representing the only chance of silverware for the club this season.

He added: “It was really tough for the players to bounce back. Obviously everyone has been down over the last few days, but we had to make sure we were right for this match because it was such an important game.

“Physically, it was fine for me coming off the bench, but the lads who played the full game against Leeds after playing 120 minutes the other day were fantastic and we’ve got to give a lot of credit to them.

“It was a big shift and a good performance. I thought we dug deep and thankfully we got the win in the end.”

The midfielder’s strike rounded off a spirited Chelsea performance and took his tally for the season to four in all competitions.

“It’s nice. I obviously like to score goals and I struggled to do that before the goals started to come, so hopefully I can continue to get more,” Gallagher said.

“It was a great pass from Enzo (Fernandez) and a good goal. We were really happy to get one right at the end because obviously it meant we didn’t have to go into extra time, and I think we were looking a bit tired.”

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp likened the instant impact of his academy players to that of darts player Luke Littler last month – but then asked for the youngsters to be given time to find their feet.

Jayden Danns scored his first two goals in only his third appearance after fellow 18-year-old Lewis Koumas had opened the scoring on debut as Southampton were beaten 3-0 to set up an FA Cup quarter-final at Manchester United.

As sons of former Premier League players Neil Danns, the ex-Crystal Palace midfielder, and Jason Koumas, who played for West Brom, the pair will have a lot of experience to call on but Klopp said they should be allowed to do that out of the spotlight.

Referencing Littler, who reached the World Darts Championship final at the age of 16, the German asked for perspective despite the youngsters’ key roles in a depleted side.

“It is little bit like the new darts sensation, it is fine for tonight. Tomorrow, leave the boys in the corner,” Klopp said.

“Everyone who is with us, we should have our moments, they will have more moments than we expect.

“All of it was obviously incredibly important. Against a Southampton team we would have had problems with anyway but in our situation we tried to give as much information as possible to them and we had to improve during the game.

“The first 15 minutes we were all over the place; we tried to press but the timing was horrendous and Southampton used that.

“We found a way into the game and the goal we scored was in a nearly perfect moment, it felt like a momentum change and then an exceptional finish from Lewis.

“We now had the momentum rather than Southampton and won a lot of high balls and scored, the play was special, the way we won the balls was special and something like that, as impossible as it seems, can happen.

“Maybe the people (fans) don’t forget it when the transfer window opens, don’t close the door (on young players) with 12 signings.”

On Danns, who came off the bench to score twice in 15 minutes to earn the man-of-the-match award, Klopp added: “Exceptional talent. Of course it is not natural that a boy 18, is as calm as you like. The second goal calm as you like.”

Saints boss Russell Martin was left to rue several missed chances in the opening 30 minutes in particular.

“I don’t think 3-0 is a fair reflection of the game as we should have been one or two up before they got close to a goal,” he said.

“The difference in the game is the quality of the finishing and their goalkeeper making some brilliant saves.

“If we are ever going to lose, then let’s do it being the team we want to be and I can’t ask any more from them tonight.

“I really enjoyed watching my team but I am really hurt for them and the result as I didn’t think we deserved that.”

Gary O’Neil revealed Wolves’ FA Cup dream after they reached the quarter-finals with a 1-0 victory over Brighton.

Mario Lemina’s goal after just 77 seconds booked a home tie with Coventry next month, just the second time Wolves have reached the last eight since 2003.

Brighton, though, bossed the game and Facundo Buonanotte missed a fine chance before goalkeeper Jason Steele sliced a good opening wide in stoppage time.

O’Neil has underlined his desire for success in the competition and admitted he told his players the goal was to lift the trophy ahead of their third-round tie at Brentford in January.

“When we set off to travel to Brentford I remember delivering the pre-match meeting and spoke about our aim, at that moment, was to win the FA Cup,” he said.

“I know how farfetched that sounds but every win you get a step closer. We have had to give a lot to get here.

“Coventry will be a massive test, they are a good side, play good football and we will be expected to roll them over by everyone outside and that can create problems.

“Whoever we played in the quarter-final we would see it as a great chance. We’ve beat Chelsea twice and Tottenham and Man City here. We love playing here, I’m sure they (fans) will be dreaming of a semi final and I’ll be analysing Coventry.”

Wolves snatched a second-minute winner when Lemina fired in at the second attempt after Steele flapped at Jean-Ricner Bellegarde’s cross.

But the hosts never built on their lead and Brighton pushed them – without forcing Jose Sa into a meaningful save.

Wayward efforts from Simon Adingra and Jakub Moder never troubled Sa but Buonanotte should have levelled instead of heading wide just before the break.

Lewis Dunk also nodded wide before Wolves lost Hwang Hee-Chan to a hamstring injury.

O’Neil added: “Someone has to play for us and we needed to get through to the next round. I’m hopeful it’s not too serious. I’d be amazed if he plays at the weekend (at Newcastle).”

Brighton pressed for a leveller which never came but they should have taken the tie to extra time in the final minute of stoppage time.

Steele raced up for a corner and when the ball was nodded down he was left unmarked six yards out but fired wide.

Boss Roberto De Zerbi said: “We played well, we made too many mistakes – especially in the first half – to score. We created a lot of chances and we played well enough to score.

“I’m happy with the performance, the style we played, the attitude, the personality. It was very tough playing without nine injured players.

“The future of Brighton was on the pitch, a lot of young players. Maybe they are not all ready for this level but we are working well and doing great things as we are keeping the same level of last season – with a lot of problems.

“The game against Fulham is on Saturday and we have to be ready to fight.”

Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag accused Nottingham Forest of targeting Bruno Fernandes in his side’s FA Cup win at the City Ground and branded criticism of his captain “pathetic”.

The Portugal midfielder overcame a “serious injury” to play his part in United’s 1-0 victory at Forest, setting up Casemiro’s 89th-minute winner from a free-kick.

He was on the receiving end of plenty of robust challenges from Forest throughout the 90 minutes while also being the butt of social media jokes after Saturday’s loss against Fulham where he suffered the problem.

Fulham’s official TikTok account poked fun at him for appearing to feign injury and it got Ten Hag’s back up.

Asked about the severity of Fernandes’ injury, he said: “I don’t want to go into that because you saw that Forest was targeting him, so I don’t tell what he has but it was a serious injury.

“There were many fouls on him. Maybe I am a little bit too tough but when he has the ball they were really tight on him.

“Then I see that serious media criticise him and social media is pathetic and it can’t be.

“He has a serious injury but he continued to play on Saturday and today he also fought to be part of the game and he has a very high pain threshold.

“Last year he did also something similar against Spurs and in the semi-final and it shows his leadership because that expresses his character and that is very good when you are a leader.”

This was far from a classic performance by United, who face Manchester City in the Premier League on Sunday, but they got the job done and kept hopes of finishing the season with a trophy in tact.

That is not going to be easy, though, as they were handed quarter-final draw against Liverpool at Old Trafford in two and a half weeks.

“There are many good teams in the Premier League, Liverpool at this moment is top but it is a great challenge and we are really looking forward and we like the challenges, it is a great game for us to play.

“But first of all we are now looking forward to Sunday.”

Extra time was looming when Casemiro glanced Fernandes’ delivery past Matt Turner to send United’s travelling contingent wild.

The goal survived a lengthy VAR check as Raphael Varane, who was in an offside possession, blocked a couple of Forest players, but he was ruled not to be interfering in play.

Such has been Forest’s frustration at refereeing decisions in recent weeks, they have appointed Mark Clattenburg to act as a conduit to the PGMOL and he was spotted sat next to Howard Webb.

And this was another decision that went against them but boss Nuno Espirito Santo, who swatted away Ten Hag’s suggestions of targeting Fernandes, did not want to dwell on it.

Nuno said: “I didn’t see clearly the images but speaking with the players they say it is a block and a possible offside. They checked it.

“We have had so many issues in this period with VAR and referees that we try to forget about it and move forward.

“I think it was a good performance, we played good, much better than the previous game, so improvement from that.

“It is frustrating to lose it in the end but I think we played good, football is cruel sometimes and today we are on that side.”

Mauricio Pochettino hailed a “needed” victory as Chelsea bounced back from Sunday’s Carabao Cup final extra-time heartbreak to edge past Leeds and reach the FA Cup quarter-finals.

Conor Gallagher, who missed two glorious chances in the closing stages of normal time in the Wembley loss to Liverpool, came off the bench to hit the winner at Stamford Bridge as the Championship side were dispatched 3-2 to set up a last-eight meeting with Leicester.

Axel Disasi and Moises Caicedo combined to gift Mateo Joseph an eighth-minute opener but the Blues turned it around before half-time as Nicolas Jackson equalised and Raheem Sterling set up Mykhailo Mudryk to make it 2-1.

Leeds levelled just before the hour mark when Joseph headed home his second but Enzo Fernandez set up Gallagher to avoid extra-time and put Chelsea through.

“We needed this result,” said Pochettino. “It wasn’t a great performance. (Leeds) were a team full of confidence, a very strong team, they are doing fantastic in the Championship.

“It was tough for us, when you concede after a few minutes. But the character we showed after in this situation, it’s a thing to learn from the team. I’m so happy. We avoided extra-time. We’re in the quarter-final which was our objective.

“It’s always tough when you lose a final in extra-time. We had 72 hours or less to recover, it’s always difficult. The effort was massive and I say thank you to the players because they made a fantastic effort.”

Pochettino reiterated his rejection of Sky Sports pundit Gary Neville’s jibe that Chelsea had “bottled” the Carabao Cup final against a Liverpool side bested by injuries.

“I cannot be angry about (Neville),” he said. “With all my love to Gary, it’s not fair to use this type of word for a team that is so brave, a club that always fights for big things.

“What can we do? Only with this type of performance show that we are brave and that we can win games. Nothing to say, only to keep moving.

“It’s not important for us. Because we know how we are and who we are, and how we behave. We know why we lost the game against Liverpool. It’s nothing to do with this.

“We know that we are brave and that we are working really hard, For us, it’s not an important comment.”

Leeds boss Daniel Farke reflected on a game that slipped away at the hands of clinical finishing from Chelsea.

“That second goal (from Mudryk), class finish,” he said. “The third goal, really good action of Gallagher.

“I’m disappointed because wherever we go, we want to win. I know it’s not realistic we will win the FA Cup, but I wanted to win this and go in the next round. We are a young side, without several key players.”

Manchester United will host Liverpool in the FA Cup quarter-finals after the two sides advanced with fifth-round victories on Wednesday night.

The Reds remain in contention for three more trophies after their rousing 1-0 extra-time victory over Chelsea in Sunday’s Carabao Cup final, and booked their place in the last eight with a 3-0 win over Southampton.

United left it late to ensure they would be next to try spoiling Jurgen Klopp’s extended leaving do, with Casemiro’s 89th-minute header sending his side through with a 1-0 win to eliminate Nottingham Forest and ensure the 12-time FA Cup winners took one step closer to reaching what would be a record 22nd final.

Holders Manchester City, in search of their eighth FA Cup trophy, will host Newcastle in an all-Premier League clash.

The quarter-final draw took place before kick-off of Chelsea’s dramatic 3-2 victory over Leeds, one of just four Championship sides who had survived past the fourth round.

Former Arsenal and Manchester City keeper David Seaman drew the balls, but it was not an entirely joyous night for the childhood Leeds fan and four-time FA Cup champion after substitute Conor Gallagher netted a dramatic late winner to send the Blues through on the stroke of full-time.

Chelsea will now host Championship leaders Leicester, who booked their quarter-final place with a 1-0 fifth-round victory over Bournemouth on Tuesday night.

Joining them in the last eight are Coventry, who, sitting ninth in the Championship, are the lowest-ranked side remaining in contention for the cup, progressing to the quarter-finals for the first time since the 2008/09 season.

They will travel to Molineux to meet Wolves, who on Wednesday night beat Brighton to reach the last eight for the first time since 2019.

Quarter-final ties will be played on the weekend of March 16.

Manchester United and Liverpool set up an FA quarter-final showdown after they claimed narrow wins over Nottingham Forest and Southampton respectively.

United were heading for extra-time at the City Ground before Casemiro secured a precious victory for Erik ten Hag’s team in the 89th minute.

A free kick by Bruno Fernandes was flicked home by the Brazilian to break the deadlock with the goal eventually given after a lengthy VAR check, which deemed the offside Raphael Varane had not interfered with play.

It was Casemiro’s first goal since September and helped United bounce back from Saturday’s loss to Fulham to clinch a home tie in the last-eight against rivals Liverpool.

The FA Cup draw had been made prior to the evening’s four kick-offs and Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool youngsters again made the most of their opportunity with an excellent 3-0 triumph over Southampton.

Liverpool, fresh from their Carabao Cup final win over Chelsea, boasted a number of academy graduates in their starting line-up and Lewis Koumas, son of former Wales international Jason, opened the scoring with a deflected effort in the 44th minute.

It was Koumas’ full debut and he marked it with a goal after he collected a pass from fellow youngster Bobby Clark before his low effort was deflected in off Jack Stephens.

Southampton had squandered a number of promising openings before that point and Klopp turned to his bench to seal the victory.

With no Mohamad Salah or Darwin Nunez, Jayden Danns got the nod and produced a superb two-goal cameo.

 

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Danns’ first was a sumptuous chip after Harvey Elliott’s through ball with 17 minutes left before he wrapped up the victory when he tapped home after Conor Bradley had been denied.

Chelsea were desperate for a response after their Wembley disappointment and Pochettino’s team selection raised eyebrows with Cole Palmer and Gallagher dropped to the bench, but the latter was able to fire his team into the last eight with a last-gasp winner.

The night started disastrously for the hosts when Moises Caicedo lost possession inside his own area after Axel Disasi’s risky pass and young forward Mateo Joseph fired beyond Robert Sanchez with eight minutes played at Stamford Bridge.

Pochettino’s men were not behind for long with Caicedo releasing Nicolas Jackson, who fired into the bottom corner for his 10th goal of the season after quarter of an hour.

Mykhailo Mudryk completed the first-half turnaround with a smart finish after Raheem Sterling’s cut-back in the 37th minute but Leeds levelled soon after half-time.

Jaidon Anthony cut inside and his floated cross was headed home by Joseph prior to the hour mark to spark jubilant scenes in the away end.

It set up a grandstand finish with chances missed by both sides before Chelsea booked their place in the next round where they will host Leicester.

Wolves set up another all-Midlands tie in the FA Cup with a 1-0 win over Brighton.

Mario Lemina slid home with only two minutes played after Jason Steele fumbled Jean-Ricner Bellegarde’s cross to book Gary O’Neil’s side a quarter-final tie at home to Coventry.

Jurgen Klopp’s kids did him proud again as Lewis Koumas scored on debut and fellow 18-year-old Jayden Danns registered his first two goals as a depleted Liverpool side beat Southampton 3-0 at Anfield.

Victory, just three days after an exhausting 120-minute Carabao Cup final win over Chelsea, set up an FA Cup quarter-final at arch rivals Manchester United.

Whether the academy players will be required for that will depend on how fast the club can rehabilitate the 13 players currently injured in the next fortnight but regardless they have done their job.

Koumas, son of former Tranmere and West Brom midfielder Jason, was one of six players 21 or under in the team.

And it was one of his fellow academy colleagues Bobby Clark, one year his senior and making his 10th appearance, who supplied the assist just before half-time.

Danns, the son of former Crystal Palace midfielder Neil and who only made his debut at Wembley, came off the bench to score the second in the 73rd minute which allowed Anfield to breathe a sigh of relief.

That allowed Klopp the luxury of sending on Trey Nyoni, who at 16 years and 243 days became the club’s youngest player in the competition and third youngest in the club’s history.

That was the signal for the party atmosphere to kick in with the Kop singing “we haven’t won a trophy – since Sunday afternoon” – just before Danns fired home his second in the 88th minute after goalkeeper Joe Lumley parried Conor Bradley’s drive.

Southampton, however, were left ruing a missed opportunity against under-strength opponents having created enough chances in the opening half-hour to have made life difficult for their hosts.

Five of Liverpool’s Sunday starting XI – Caoimhin Kelleher, Virgil van Dijk, Harvey Elliott, Cody Gakpo and Bradley – were retained with three others – Ibrahim Konate, Alexis Mac Allister and Luis Diaz – dropped to the bench.

However, it was not all routine with defender Joe Gomez, who has been deployed all across the back four this season, asked to play the holding role in midfield alongside youngsters James McConnell and Clark.

But being asked to play a late cameo in a cup final and delivering from the off in a somewhat experimental team are two different things and the disjointed nature of the first 40 minutes were understandable.

Southampton, fourth in the Championship and with eyes on a bigger prize than cup success to the extent they made eight changes from Saturday’s defeat to Millwall, took advantage but not enough to open the scoring, which was largely due to their decision-making in the final third.

Sekou Mara had the ball in the net after just 38 seconds but had gone too early and was flagged offside.

Kamaldeen Sulemana hit a post and Mara forced Kelleher into two saves, with Sulemana then opting to shoot at the goalkeeper with Mara and Samuel Edozie waiting for a pass.

There was a point late in the half when Kostas Tsimikas was shouting instructions to Gakpo only for Klopp to tell the left-back to do something different when he had the ball.

It summed up the confusion and lack of cohesion – until a moment of clarity fashioned on the training fields of Kirkby broke the deadlock.

Lumley had waited 40 minutes to make a save, from Elliott’s 25-yarder, but he was undone by the quick feet of Koumas and a deflection off Jack Stephens.

Koumas started the move out on the left wing and when Clark picked out the winger’s run he cut onto his right foot and hit a shot which flicked off Stephens on its way past Lumley.

In a pre-planned move, Konate replaced Van Dijk for the second half to present Liverpool with a different challenge without the leadership of their inspirational captain.

The substitute assumed the mantle immediately, doing just enough to put off Mara as he tried to reach Sulemana’s cross, while at that same far post the unmarked Shea Charles fired into the side-netting with only Kelleher to beat after a corner dropped to him.

Danns showed a composure belying his age by clipping a shot over Lumley after Will Smallbone’s errant pass went straight to Elliott, before adding a late second.

Casemiro’s late winner kept Manchester United in with a chance of ending a disappointing season with silverware as Erik ten Hag’s men edged past Nottingham Forest to set up an FA Cup quarter-final clash with Liverpool.

Ten Hag won the Carabao Cup during a promising first campaign but has come under increasing pressure during a troubled second season that threatened to unravel if they lost at the City Ground.

But last year’s FA Cup finalists dug deep and Casemiro turned home Bruno Fernandes’ free-kick at the death to secure a 1-0 win against Forest and set-up a mouth-watering quarter-final at Old Trafford.

The 89th-minute winner, which took several minutes to clear by the VAR, keeps United’s season alive having been dumped out of Europe in December and long since played themselves out of the Premier League title race.

Victory provides a welcome shot in the arm for injury-hit United, who not only bounced back from the home loss to Fulham but avoided extra-time exertions before this weekend’s derby clash with Manchester City.

Ten Hag’s troops had the best chances in the first half, albeit Forest had 14 opportunities after Antony – one of three alterations from Saturday’s crushing defeat – hit the crossbar just four minutes in with a first-time shot from Fernandes’ low cross.

Diogo Dalot’s fine cross was met by a close-range header from Scott McTominay but it was straight at Matt Turner.

The visitors wanted to unsettle the out-of-sorts Forest back-up, whose goal Marcus Rashford drove over as Ten Hag’s men looked for a morale-boosting opener.

But Forest had now settled after a cumbersome start, with former Liverpool striker Divock Origi and target man Taiwo Awoniyi posing problems.

Makeshift left-back Sofyan Amrabat was struggling and United’s midfield continued to leave gaps that Forest failed to punish as opportunities did not translate into clear-cut chances.

In fact, Nuno Espirito Santo’s hosts would have gone into the break behind was it not for a smart save from Turner at his near post after Dalot spun brilliantly away from danger to get in a cross for McTominay.

Both teams returned from the break unchanged and Forest began the brighter.

United academy graduate Elanga battled and played in Awoniyi to force a save out of Onana, who was soon punching away a rasping Origi effort.

Ten Hag’s side eventually regained composure and began to impose themselves, with Rashford seeing penalty appeals rejected after being sandwiched by two Forest defenders.

Fernandes bent wide with the outside of his right boot and saw a low effort turned just wide by McTominay as United dominated possession and the second half shot count.

Amad Diallo replaced the ineffective Antony and could not make clean connection on a blocked Alejandro Garnacho effort, with Rashford lasering off target as they continued to knock on the door.

Forest offered little response and Casemiro tried his luck as the clock wound down, with United sticking to their task and getting their reward from an 89th-minute set piece.

Fernandes swung a free-kick from the left flank to the near post, where Casemiro’s slight headed touch took it past Turner, sparking wild celebrations.

Forest looked fortunate not to be reduced to 10 men in stoppage time after Felipe grabbed Fernandes’ throat.

Mario Lemina fired Wolves into the FA Cup quarter final after a nervy 1-0 win over Brighton.

The hosts reached the last eight for just the second time in 21 years and the first time since 2019, when they made the semi-finals.

There is now a path to Wembley for O’Neil’s side, who will host Championship side Coventry in the next round, but they lived dangerously at Molineux.

Facundo Buonanotte wasted a fine opening and goalkeeper Jason Steele, up for a late corner, missed the chance to take the tie extra time.

But last season’s semi-finalists – who dominated for long spells – could not find a way back from conceding the winner after just 77 seconds.

Brighton – missing eight regular starters including Solly March, Joao Pedro, Kaoru Mitoma and James Milner – were already underdogs even before going behind early.

Jean-Ricner Bellegarde’s fine turn sent him scampering away from Jan Paul van Hecke down the left and Steele could only flap at his deflected cross.

Lemina and Pervis Estupinan arrived at the far post, with the Wolves midfielder reacting first to slide the ball in at the second attempt.

But, much like Sunday’s 1-0 Premier League win over Sheffield United, the hosts failed to build on their lead.

Brighton recovered from the shock of the early goal and, with Simon Adingra and Jakub Moder shooting off target, got a grip of the game.

There was little suggestion Wolves would add to their lead, although Steele had to be alert to clear at Bellegarde’s feet after he raced on to Igor’s weak backpass.

It was the Seagulls who created the best openings and they should have levelled seven minutes before the break when Buonanotte planted a free header wide from Estupinan’s cross.

Roberto De Zerbi clearly sensed a way back into the tie and introduced Danny Welbeck at the break, with Brighton continuing to press.

Lewis Dunk nodded wide and Wolves’ frustrations grew when they lost Hwang Hee-chan and Lemina to injury.

Yet the changes, with Pedro Neto and Pablo Sarabia called on, briefly gave the hosts much-needed zip even if they failed to add to a slender lead.

The visitors, though, regrouped again and pinned Wolves back without testing Jose Sa as the game entered its final 15 minutes.

Julio Enciso drilled wide from 25 yards, more in frustration than with a belief he would score, and Welbeck nodded over.

Steele, up for a last-gasp corner, should have taken the tie to extra time but sliced wide from six yards as Wolves squeezed through.

Chelsea survived an FA Cup scare as Conor Gallagher came off the bench to score a last-minute winner and seal a 3-2 victory over Leeds at Stamford Bridge.

The substitute lashed the ball past the visitors’ goalkeeper Illan Meslier to grab what had looked an unlikely victory for much of the game, never more so than when the Blues fell behind inside eight minutes to the first of two goals from Mateo Joseph.

Mauricio Pochettino’s side rallied and looked to have put their woeful start behind them when first Nicolas Jackson and then Mykhailo Mudryk netted to send them in 2-1 up at the break.

Leeds would not lie down easy though, and Joseph headed them level after evading Trevoh Chalobah at the far post on the hour mark.

The home support bubbled with disquiet, sensing another cup mishap after Sunday’s Carabao Cup final loss to Liverpool.

Then came Gallagher’s late intervention to keep hopes of a Wembley return in May alive.

The opening 10 minutes were dominated by Leeds. They might have taken the lead when Daniel James found space on the edge of the box and acrobatically lobbed an effort wide.

It was a let-off for Chelsea, but they did not heed their good fortune. From the goal-kick, Axel Disasi played a short pass inside the penalty area that left Moises Caicedo vulnerable. Leeds snapped at his heels, dispossessing him, and the ball broke to Joseph, who cracked it past Robert Sanchez as Chelsea’s defence pointed fingers.

The first mutterings of discontent among the home support started, but they were doused before they had time to take hold. Caicedo made partial amends for his earlier error, sliding a precise ball through that split Leeds’ defence. Into the space strode Jackson, and he placed it into Meslier’s bottom corner to ease Chelsea nerves.

Thereafter they settled, and deservedly took the lead after 37 minutes. Noni Madueke carried the ball up through midfield and poked it to Malo Gusto wide on the right. He fed Raheem Sterling, who crossed for Mudryk to cap the move with a delightful finish, glancing it with a deft right foot wide of the goalkeeper and in.

James skied one over the bar from six yards as Leeds threatened an instant reply. Jaidon Anthony went closer when he curled wide from outside the box, a reminder that a stiff challenge might await Chelsea in the second half.

Daniel Farke’s team had won nine in a row in the league. Here they went up against Premier League opponents with the courage and skill to suggest they would fare well should they return to the top flight, but their hosts were giving ample encouragement.

The equaliser was straight forward and entirely avoidable from Chelsea’s point of view. Anthony was given space on the right to assess options and size up a cross. Stealing away at the far post was Jospeh, and his marker Chalobah paid him little heed as he stepped outside the defender and nodded past an exposed Sanchez.

The murmurs of disapproval began again from the stands, though they were largely drowned out by the away fans’ vocal support. They deserved better than the heartbreak that came as the clock ticked over to 90 minutes.

Enzo Fernandez was the architect of the winner, darting infield and through the heart of the defence and finally finding the pass that Chelsea had craved throughout the half. Gallagher, with fresh legs from the bench, let the ball run across him and with a swing of his right boot lashed Chelsea into the quarter-finals.

Newcastle goalkeeper Martin Dubravka set his sights on the trophy after his penalty shoot-out heroics helped Newcastle into the FA Cup quarter-finals.

The Slovakian, who missed last weekend’s hammering at Arsenal due to illness, saved twice as the Magpies scraped past Championship Blackburn 4-3 on penalties after a 1-1 draw at Ewood Park on Tuesday.

Dubravka denied Sammie Szmodics, who had cancelled out Anthony Gordon’s opener in normal time, and then touched the final kick of the night from Rovers captain Dom Hyam on to a post.

The cup now appears to be sustaining Newcastle’s season given that their Champions League challenge has faded and Dubravka wants to bring major silverware to the club for the first time since 1969.

“We are delighted to be there,” Dubravka told NUFC TV. “It was difficult match for us with chances on both sides. I’m really happy that we are there now.

“We want to win the trophies, obviously, so we try to go for it. I think this could lift our confidence.

“We needed a reaction after the Arsenal game and I think this was a great example. We need to build on this.

“Obviously there were a couple of moments in the match that we did amazing, but also, on the other side, there were a couple of moments where have to do it better.

“We are still in a learning process, but I think we are in a good place now.”

Newcastle failed to make an impression in the first half and it was Blackburn who dominated, with the impressive Szmodics proving a handful.

The balance changed after the break and Newcastle edged ahead after 71 minutes through Gordon, but Rovers roared back, with Szmodics tucking in after Dilian Markanday’s thunderous effort had been tipped on to the bar.

Both sides had chances to win the game in normal and extra-time before it came down to the penalty shoot-out. The drama continued as Szmodics and Ashley Barnes both had efforts saved, but Dubravka had the final say.

“Obviously you hope that you don’t go to the penalties because it’s a lottery,” Dubravka said. “You never know what’s going to happen there.

“It’s the nerves. You can’t really prepare for this kind of situation. It’s personal behaviour and confidence.”

Defeat was harsh on a Blackburn side whose performance belied their lowly position in the Championship, but manager John Eustace, who is still awaiting his first win after five games in charge, saw the positives.

He said: “You could see the group are gelling as we want. It’s just small steps, but that’s the second time now we’ve come from behind at home.

“The lads have shown me that they’re a good, young, hungry group with some good experience and we’ve just got to keep working hard.”

Newcastle manager Eddie Howe hailed a “big moment” in his side’s season after they scraped past Championship Blackburn on penalties in the FA Cup on Tuesday.

Martin Dubravka saved two spot-kicks as the Magpies prevailed 4-3 in the shoot-out after the game had ended 1-1 after extra time.

With the club having slipped to 10th in the Premier League in what has been a largely underwhelming campaign after last year’s top-four finish, the cup now represents the best chance to maintain their upward trajectory.

Howe said: “Obviously a lot was riding on the outcome so I thought the players handled the moment brilliantly, the goalkeeper and outfield players who took the penalties.

“It was big moment in our season at such a crucial stage.

“The players are desperate to achieve. No-one is underestimating the importance of the FA Cup.”

Howe also praised the heroics of Dubravka after the Slovakia keeper had been ill in the build-up to the game.

He said: “The two penalty saves were huge for us but in open play I thought he really performed well and we needed him to because they had a few big moments.

“He’s been playing feeling slightly ill and he deserves huge credit for doing that. He was nowhere near fit for the weekend against Arsenal and hasn’t been 100 per cent for quite a long period of time.”

Dubravka kept Blackburn at bay with a number of saves before Newcastle broke the deadlock in the 71st minute through Anthony Gordon.

Blackburn responded well and levelled through the impressive Sammie Szmodics and both sides had chances to win it, in normal time and extra time, but it came down to penalties and Dubravka kept out efforts from Szmodics and Dominic Hyam.

Howe said: “I thought we got better as it went on. I don’t think the first half was particularly good, I thought the second half was better and extra time was our best spell of the game by a long way.

“Really we shouldn’t have allowed it to go to penalties with the chances we missed in extra time.”

Blackburn manager John Eustace was pleased with the effort of his side, who played at a level above that of a team 16th in the Championship.

Eustace, who is still awaiting his first win after taking charge earlier this month, said: “When it goes down to penalties it’s a bit of a lottery but I’m very, very proud of the squad that we used and also very proud of the supporters.

“I couldn’t ask for any more effort and desire and togetherness. You can see that everyone’s really fighting and looking after each other and you can see the style of play improving game by game.

“We’re making small steps forward. We’re playing against a top Premier League team, top players, and you could see that we could hurt them in certain areas. On another day we could have had a couple more goals.”

Erling Haaland plundered five goals as holders Manchester City powered into the FA Cup quarter-finals with a 6-2 victory at Luton.

The Norwegian notched a first-half hat-trick at Kenilworth Road to put City 3-0 up, with Kevin De Bruyne providing the assist for each of the goals.

After Luton replied with efforts from Jordan Clark just prior to and just after the interval, Haaland notched his fourth – De Bruyne again registering an assist – and then a fifth, before Mateo Kovacic completed the rout.

Championship leaders Leicester pulled off a 1-0 win at Bournemouth thanks to an extra-time effort from substitute Abdul Fatawu.

Fatawu sent a fine shot past Cherries goalkeeper Mark Travers in the final minute of the first half of the additional period.

Newcastle are also through after getting past Blackburn 4-3 on penalties after a 1-1 draw over 120 minutes at Ewood Park.

The contest went to spot-kicks after Sammie Szmodics’ 79th-minute equaliser for the Championship hosts cancelled out Anthony Gordon’s effort eight minutes earlier.

In the shootout Martin Dubravka made saves to deny Szmodics and Dominic Hyam as the Magpies prevailed.

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