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Brighton 1 Roma 0 (agg 1-4): Welbeck goal not enough as De Zerbi’s men crash out of Europe after first leg mauling

BRIGHTON may have been defeated in the Europa League – but they won the battle of the banners. 

Danny Welbeck’s 37th minute rocket wasn’t enough to save the club’s debut campaign in Europe after they were left with a 4-0 mountain to climb following a hellish first-leg in Rome.

Danny Welbeck's first-half goal proved not to be enough

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Danny Welbeck’s first-half goal proved not to be enoughCredit: Getty
They  attempted to rally an unlikely comeback

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They attempted to rally an unlikely comebackCredit: PA

But they got the last laugh after unfurling a banner which read “Totti loves pineapple on pizza” after Roma fans’ x-rated sign aimed at the late Queen last week.

The Seagulls, who were in the third-tier as recently as 2011, can be proud of their glittering run which has seen wins in Ajax and Athens as well as beating Marseille at home to top their group. 

After a quiet start, the first-half got heated at the Amex.  

Brighton were very lucky when a jaw-dropping overhead kick from Sardar Azmoun was ruled out for a high foot on Jan-Paul van Hecke on the half-hour mark.

The Roma bench went berserk when the goal was not given and Daniele De Rossi was booked for giving an earful to the fourth official. 

Brighton manager Roberto De Zerbi followed suit and was shown a yellow as tempers flared on the benches following argy bargy on the pitch in the build up to a Pascal Gross free-kick.  

The Seagulls needed a lift and it arrived in spectacular fashion when Pervis Estupinan supplied a peach of a pass to Welbeck who curled a beauty into the top corner that goalkeeper Mile Svilar could not reach. 

Brighton lived to rue their missed chances in the game

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Brighton lived to rue their missed chances in the gameCredit: PA
Credit: The Sun

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There was a brief VAR check to see if Leonardo Spinazzola should be sent off for a foul on Tariq Lamptey but the decision was no. 

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In the aftermath Estupinan was pushed to the floor by Azmoun and they were both booked for their roles in the resulting melee.

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Credit: The Sun

After the break Simon Adingra would have doubled the lead with a bullet header had it not been for a superb save by Svilar. 

Van Hecke then also came close with back to back headers as the clock was ticking – but it just wasn’t meant to be.

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