Arsenal 0-3 Brighton: Roberto De Zerbi sets Seagulls Europe qualification target after win

Brighton manager Roberto De Zerbi wants his side to finish off an impressive Premier League campaign by qualifying for European competition.

The Seagulls pulled off a stunning 3-0 victory over title-chasing Arsenal at the Emirates on Sunday. Julio Enciso’s close-range header got Brighton’s first on the day before Deniz Undav netted a second.

Pervis Estupinan then scored a third during injury-time to seal a memorable away win.

Roberto De Zerbi could not hide his happiness at another stellar Brighton showing during post-match media duties.

“I’m very delighted with the performance. I think we deserved to win,” said the Italian, via Hayters TV. “But I’m really proud, because the last five days were very difficult after the defeat on Monday.

“Today we showed our value, our passion. My players showed they are great people; then, we can speak about football, about our style, the quality of our players. But firstly, we won the game because we suffered after the last defeat.”

The result leaves Brighton sixth in the Premier League – good enough for a place in next season’s Europa League. They are, however, just a point ahead of Spurs and Aston Villa, albeit with two games in hand.

Of course, these games in hand do not guarantee extra points. The manager was thus weary that his side cannot rest on their laurels.

Roberto De Zerbi sets European target for Brighton

To reach the Europa League, Brighton must continue to get results right up until the season’s end. Despite this, any sort of continental competition for De Zerbi’s side will definitely be a tremendous success.

“We have 58 points, and they are not enough to qualify for the Europa League. We have another four tough games, and we have to fight, we have to deserve to qualify. Because 58 points are not enough to play Thursdays next year.

“I am focused only on qualifying for Europe now. And for my future, I want to dream, because I’m used to giving everything in my work. I live for my work, and I want to dream.

“I want to reach the impossible targets. Now with Brighton, before with Shakhtar, before with Sassuolo… When I work in football, I want to fix the target very high.”

Although reaching the Champions League this season would be “very difficult”, the Italian believes Brighton have earned a spot in either the Europa or Conference League.

“We deserve to qualify for Europe. Which Europe, I don’t know.”

Meanwhile, the Seagull’s success on Sunday put a massive dent in Arsenal’s title pursuit.

Arsenal 0-3 Brighton: Premier League title now in City’s hands

As a result of their defeat on Sunday, the Gunners have put Manchester City in control of their destiny. Pep Guardiola’s side need to win just one of their three remaining games to secure a third successive Premier League crown.

This therefore means that City could become Champions as early as Sunday’s match at home to Chelsea.

For Arsenal, this is a devastating blow after leading the division for so long. They are now four points behind City having played a game more, and with just two matches remaining.

Club captain Martin Odegaard was particularly downbeat following the loss to Brighton.

“It is going to be very difficult now,” said the Norwegian about snatching the title from City (via BBC Sport). “We have to be honest. It is tough to take. It’s not a good feeling at the moment. The way we played, particularly in the second half, I don’t know what happened to be honest.

“It feels like there is no hope now.”

The Gunners must now wish for a few slip-ups from the Man City juggernaut in order to have any hope of taking their first PL crown since 2004. Roberto De Zerbi and Brighton may have truly put this particular title challenge to bed.

Featured image credit: Getty