Premier League Brighton & Hove Albion scored two second half goals to end Preston North End’s Carabao Cup hopes for the 2020/21 season.
The Seagulls picked up their first ever win at Deepdale, at the 16th attempt, with goals from Alireza Jahanbakhsh and Alexis McCallister after the break.
Both teams were much-changed from their last league outings, Graham Potter altering the entire 11 that defeated Newcastle United, whilst Alex Neil chose to make nine change from the side that took a point at Norwich City’s Carrow Road.
The first half saw a good chance for each side, with Connor Ripley making an excellent save from Jahanbakhsh, who looked a couple of yards offside when he broke down the right and forced a save from the keeper just before the half hour mark.
But North End went closest seven minutes before half-time when Jason Steele denied Jayden Stockley with a brilliant one-handed save after a great break with Brad Potts finding the PNE No.20, who opened up and curled the ball towards the bottom right corner only for the orange-clad stopper to tip the ball around the post.
From the resulting corner from skipper Paul Gallagher on the right, Patrick Bauer rose highest and powered a header that smashed against the bar and then over the bar.
But the visitors took the lead on 57 minutes when Bernardo found space on the left to deliver a deep cross that found its way through to Jahanbakhsh, who hit a vicious shot into the top left-hand corner from the right corner of the penalty area.
And it was two with 15 minutes to go when Pascal Gross played a one-two around the PNE defence and pulled the ball back for Argentinian MaCallister to fire home from six yards out.
Ben Pearson, Scott Sinclair and Sean Maguire had already been added to the North End side to try and add a new cutting edge to their efforts, but despite their best endeavours, they were unable to get back into the tie and it was the Premier League outfit who set up a fourth round clash with Manchester United.
PNE line-up: Ripley, Rafferty, Hughes, Bayliss, Bauer, Storey, Bodin (Sinclair, 70), Gallagher (c) (Pearson, 72), Stockley, Potts, Harrop (Maguire, 71). Subs not used: Hudson, Fisher, Davies, O’Reilly.
Brighton & Hove Albion line-up: Steele, MaCallister (Gwargis, 80), Gross (c), Jahanbakhsh (Jenks, 84), Propper, Bernardo, Burn, Veltman, Sanders (Cochrane, 87), Gyokeres, Roberts. Subs not used: Sanchez, Yapi, Dendoncker.
Referee: Mr S Martin