Alireza Jahanbakhsh netted a late equaliser as Brighton & Hove Albion held Chelsea to a 1-1 draw at the Amex Stadium this afternoon.
Cesar Azpilicueta had fired Frank Lampard’s side into a first half lead but Jahanbaskhsh levelled matters six minutes from time with an impressive effort.
The Blues got off to a quick start on the South Coast when Azpilicueta scored the opener after just 10 minutes. Brighton & Hove Albion struggled to clear the danger posed by a Chelsea corner kick and Blues defender Azpilicueta scrambled the ball home from close range.
The home side rallied after the goal and Adam Webster headed a chance wide before Leandro Trossard saw an effort spectacularly saved by Chelsea keeper Kepa Arrizabalaga.
The South West Londoners were inches away from making it 2-0 just before the break when Christian Pulisic took aim at goal but his shot went marginally wide.
The second half was all about Brighton & Hove Albion. Despite Chelsea starting the second 45 minutes brightly, The home side applied more and more pressure as the half went on. Jahanbaskhsh struck an effort over the bar before Aaron Connolly’s goal-bound strike was tipped away by Arrizabalaga.
Albion levelled matters six minutes from time when Jahanbaskhsh hooked the ball into the net with a stunning overhead kick.
Graham Potter’s side could even have won the match had Arrizabalaga not saved a Neal Maupay effort.
Chelsea will now look forward to their Emirates FA Cup third round tie against Nottingham Forest at Stamford Bridge on Sunday.