In a season of suffering, the FA Cup provided yet another slap in the face for Jurgen Klopp and Liverpool.
Their reign as holders is over, ended at the fourth round stage by Brighton, after Kaoru Mitoma’s stoppage-time goal condemned them to a 2-1 defeat at the Amex Stadium.
Harvey Elliott had given the Reds a first-half lead, finishing off a fine pass from Mohamed Salah, only for Lewis Dunk to divert Tariq Lamptey’s 25-yard strike past a wrong-footed Alisson Becker to level matters before the break.
Both sides missed chances in the second period, and the game appeared to be drifting towards a stalemate until in the 93rd minute, Pervis Estupinan’s clipped cross reached Mitoma at the back post, and the brilliant Japanese international showed incredible composure to take a touch before stabbing a volley past Alisson from close range.
It felt tough on Klopp’s side, who competed well throughout and were unrecognisable from the side battered here in the Premier League earlier this month, but it is merely the latest setback in a campaign that is fast becoming a nightmare at Anfield.
GOAL runs through the winners and losers from a dramatic day on the South Coast…