It was a bruising affair in the opening exchanges, as Gabriel Martinelli both received and delivered crushing challenges in the first 10 minutes.
Martin Ødegaard saw his long range effort flash just past the post 15 minutes into the proceedings, but the chances were limited for both sides.
Leandro Trossard’s fizzing effort range the crossbar just before the half-hour mark – the Arsenal threat was growing.
Arsenal created a flurry of chances immediately after the restart, but they were undone as soon as Brighton went the other way, as Julio Enciso was left unmarked from point-blank range before heading home the opener.
Brighton showed supreme professionalism as they attempted to see out the final 20 minutes, slowing the game down to crawl and breaking up any Arsenal rhythm.
The game was all but wrapped up in the final five minutes, as Deniz Undav was played in behind before chipping Aaron Ramsdale to double Brighton’s lead. Stoppage time wouldn’t prove any kinder, as Pervis Estupiñán struck Brighton’s third on the break.
Arsenal player ratings
GK – Aaron Ramsdale – 4/10 – Could do nothing about the first goal, but his poor distribution led to the second.
RB – Ben White – 3/10 – Struggled at times with long balls over the top.
CB – Jakub Kiwior – 4/10 – Looked slightly shakier than he has in recent games.
CB – Gabriel – 6/10 – A battling performance against the towering presence of Evan Ferguson.
LB – Kieran Tierney – 5/10 – He’s a good player, but Arsenal a much better team with Zinchenko in the line-up.
CM – Martin Odegaard – 6/10 – Showed glimpses of quality, but didn’t make enought of an eipact on the gamer
CM – Jorginho – 4/10 –Struggled to really get a foothold in the middle of the park.
CM – Granit Xhaka – 5/10 – A decent first half showing but a lot quieter in the second half.
RW – Bukayo Saka – 6/10 – Worked hard but didn’t proved the needed end product.
ST – Gabriel Jesus – 4/10 – Had one half-decent chance to score in the first half. Simply didn’t do enough after that.
LW – Gabriel Martinelli – N/A – Came off injured early on.
Leandro Trossard – 4/10 – Hit the crossbar in the first half. At fault for a goal in the second.
Thomas Partey – N/A.
Reiss Nelson – N/A.
Emile Smith Rowe – N/A.
Manager – Mikel Arteta – 5/10 – Out-thought tactically by De Zerbi today and looked flustered in the second half, being booked for an outburst at the officials.
Brighton player ratings
GK – Jason Steele – 6/10 – So, so composed with the ball at his feet.
RB – Moises Caicedo – 8/10 – You can see why every top club wants to sign him this summer. He can even play right-back better than most.
CB – Levi Colwill – 6/10 – The youngster impressed once again with his quality on the ball.
CB – Lewis Dunk – 6/10 – Dealt with Gabriel Jesus well.
LB – Pervis Estupinan – 8/10 – Is he the best left-back in the Premier League right now? He’s certainly in the conversation at the very least. Scored his first ever Premier League goal.
DM – Pascal Gross – 6/10 – Tidy in possession throughout the game and helped Brighton take control at times.
DM – Billy Gilmour – 5/10 – Worked hard but was subbed off in the 60th minute.
RM – Julio Enciso – 8/10 – So lively throughout and bagged a deserved goal.
AM – Alexis Mac Allister – 6/10 – Very busy in the middle of the park and showed some real quality on the ball at times too.
LM – Kaoru Mitoma – 7/10 – Most of his best work was actually done on the defensive side of the ball.
ST – Evan Ferguson – 6/10 – Enjoyed a fiercely physical battle with Gabriel.
Danny Welbeck – 6/10.
Facundo Buonanotte – N/A.
Deniz Undav – 7/10 – Scored a lovely goal.
Manager – Roberto De Zerbi – 8/10 – Another brilliant showing from his Brighton team. The Italian backed his side to play their game, and they did just that.