A record crowd of 30,250 witnessed a first half when the Seagulls were blown away by the pace and passing of the Arsenal. However we regrouped at half time and made a fist of it.
Speaking to John Pargiter who wanted some betting tips I have to be disloyal and say Arsenal to win to nil was the stand out bet as there was no way I could see our forwards scoring- or anyone else. With Teixeira not starting, who scored two beauties in the week, I felt even more confident I had made the Pargiter fortune. Bless me if we score two second half goals.
There was a stirring atmosphere in the Amex in the build up culminating in a rousing rendition of Sussex by the Sea – you can join in too on this YouTube link – SUSSEX BY THE SEA
However it only took 93 seconds for the difference in class to be apparent when Calum Chambers picked out Theo Walcott and he executed swiftly and decisively. You simply don’t see goals like that in the Championship and too much space was conceded. It was the same problem with the second goal when Rosicky picked out Ozil. We managed to hold out till half time – Chris Hughton must have had stern words. Certainly he gave O’Grady more of a central role and Baldock went wide. This worked as both scored and there was a shout for a penalty when ball struck arm. However Rozicky who had a marvellous game scored a third from a volley and Sanchez struck the bar. So, even if we got back on terms, I doubt if it was sustainable.
We were all proud of our boys who after the initial period of too much respect and space gave a formidable premier team a game of it. We have now scored 5 goals in three matches and O’Grady is a new player. Ince too won important game changing tackles in midfield and drove the team on. We already are seeing the benefit of Chris Hughton.
Rather apologetically I called John Pargiter. He was watching the final round of the US PGA Humana and told me he had Justin Thomas at long odds for a top ten finish and these things happen. I also congratulated Alan Tanner as Fulham are the only West London team in the draw tonight and one of only four London sides left in the competition.