Chelsea boss Graham Potter suffered a humiliating return to Brighton when his former club ended their initial unbeaten run with a stunning 4-1 win at Amex Stadium on Saturday.
Potter had played nine unbeaten games since leaving Brighton to take command of the Blues.
But Brighton ruined the Chelsea boss’s first meeting with the Seagulls as their new manager Roberto De Zerbi enjoyed his first success after his arrival to replace Potter.
Brighton took the lead at half-time, with own goals from Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Trevoh Chalobah adding to Potter’s unhappiness after Leandro Trossard’s opening opening.
Kai Havertz withdrew a goal soon after half-time, but Pascal Gross’s late shot rubbed the salt on Potter’s wounds.
Potter was mocked when he stepped off the Chelsea team bus and endured the mocking, albeit unrealistic, chants of “you will be fired in the morning” by the Brighton faithful through his team’s sad performance.
It was an afternoon to forget for Potter, whose team dropped to fifth and now lead Manchester City by eight points.
Having secured their place in the Champions League round of 16 with a midweek win in Salzburg, Chelsea looked lethargic from the start of their first defeat to Brighton since 1933.
Chelsea captain Thiago Silva had been forced to head on his own goal line twice, first to deny Trossard and then Pervis Estupinan, when Brighton took the fifth minute lead.
Japanese winger Kaoru Mitoma got the assist on his Premier League debut, picking Trossard, who overtook Chelsea goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga to score his seventh goal of the season.
Albion doubled the lead with just 14 minutes on the clock.
Solly March’s corner caused chaos and Chelsea midfielder Loftus-Cheek could only deflect the ball into his own net through the bottom of the crossbar.
“Potter, what’s the score?” played around Amex Stadium when Chelsea’s Christian Pulisic somehow pulled to the side with the door open after Robert Sanchez rejected Conor Gallagher’s initial attempt.
Spain goalkeeper Sanchez then fared better, delivering a stunning one-handed diving save to turn a Gallagher header over the crossbar.
But Chelsea’s brief relaunch died three minutes before half-time.
Chalobah did the damage, deflecting the ball past Kepa in his own net after Estupinan cut the ball back from the left.
Four minutes after the break, Gallagher made an inviting cross from the right after Loftus-Cheek’s suspension and Havertz escaped Albion’s defense to go home.
Chelsea dominated for much of the last 25 minutes, but their embarrassment was complete in the final moments as Gross took advantage of the rebound after Julio Enciso was dismissed by substitute goalkeeper Edouard Mendy.