Brighton & Hove Albion v Arsenal
The FA Cup with Budweiser
Fourth Round Proper
3pm, Saturday 26 January 2013
The Amex Stadium, Brighton & Hove Albion FC
Winning clubs receive £90,000 from The FA's Prize Fund
Click here for fixtures
By Thomas Deveson
Andrea Orlandi is confident Brighton can spring an FA Cup surprise against Premier League Arsenal on Saturday at their state of the art Amex Stadium.
The Spanish midfielder shrugged off the slight disappointment that his former club Swansea, who Brighton signed him from last summer, did not make it through their Third Round replay against Arsenal.
Now he is now preparing to pit his wits against some of the most talented midfield players in the country, such as Jack Wilshere and Santi Cazorla.
Yet while Arsenal have long been known for their slick style of play, Brighton also favour an attractive, passing game and Orlandi admits his team could do worse than follow the example set by Saturday's opponents.
He said: "I'm really excited about playing Arsenal. I was a big fan of Arsenal when I was in Spain watching the Premier League so it's going to be nice playing against them.
"Saying you are disappointed when you are playing against Arsenal would be disrespectful really. It was a win-win for me, playing against either Swansea or Arsenal.
"We try to play this way, to control the games. I didn't watch many Brighton games last season but I know this is what they have been doing for the last few seasons under Gus (Poyet).
"That would be a nice name for Brighton, mini-Arsenal, we just try to play the same way of football. So maybe, why not?"
His battle against Spanish compatriot Cazorla could be one of the key clashes on Saturday, with Orlandi full of admiration for his fellow midfielder.
"I've never played against him unfortunately," he added. "But I have seen him playing for a long time, when he was at Villarreal.
"When he was young you could see his talent and his quality. He took a free-kick with his left foot the other day when he is a right footed player. He can kick with both legs and you can't see the difference. His technique and his control is good, I'm a big admirer of his."
A sizeable Spanish influence has helped Brighton to within four points of the Championship play-offs, with four of the five available to Poyet fielded in the starting line up at Blackburn on Tuesday - and that is a statistic that Orlandi is understandably happy about.
"For me it is great to play with Vicente, for example, because that was one of the things I wanted to experience when I signed for this club," he said.
"Playing alongside him and David Lopez, we did some good things but we didn't really change the game and create that many chances."
Arsenal arrive in sixth place in the Premier League, four points behind Tottenham in the final Champions League place. Thomas Vermaelen (knee) is Arsene Wenger's main injury concern.
Brighton & Hove Albion v Arsenal
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