Brighton HA 2 – 4 Wigan Athletic
Tuesday 15th March 2005

From one extreme to the other – Saturday’s game might have been as dull as a night spent discussing peas with John Major but the same can’t be said of this game. On a night that the fixture computer created for masochists and 92 club members, and the traffic in the South East conspired with the press to derail our promotion attempt, the boys in royal blue rose to the challenge and stormed the Withdean Stadium all guns blazing.

Sat at home with Matt for uppers and Harold and Steve Claridge to bring you back down is never the best way to enjoy a football match, but you have to take what you can get. Having said that not even Mr. McCann can make a four goal in the first half hour blitz sound more outrageous than it actually is, but you can guarantee that even at 4-1 up at half time that his returning sidekick will be able to add a note of yea olde Springfield pessimism to the occasion. Yes, even after his hollybobs Harold never sounded totally convinced of the win until the final whistle.

Three goals in 17 minutes from Bullard, McCulloch and Teale made Steve Claridge’s warning, on Sky Sports News, about what could happen if we lost Ellington and Roberts sound a little bit daft. Although to be fair Roberts was involved in each of the goals. A great performance topped off with another goal for the big man. We hit Brighton before they before they woke up and can chalk up another manager and set of fans on our ‘think we’re the best team in the division’ list.

Paul Jewell has made it quite clear that what happened after we went four up wasn’t acceptable, a little picky you might think but at this stage of the season we really can’t afford to take our eye off the ball and any criticism for taking it easy has to be at least half justified. From watching the goals on Sky our defending for the two they scored would be described as best as sloppy, and even if four goals means you don’t have to push as hard, it’s no excuse for not concentrating. A better team may have taken real advantage of it.

Not being there means that I have to take others advice on the plus points, there’s a definite pattern emerging in recent weeks. Roberts again was superb as was Kavanagh, if they can keep it going then there’s good news for everyone at the end of it all I think, Teale’s good form also continued. Question of the game is a simple one Jimmy’s pacey swerving lob or Macca’s flick over the head and volley? But then again the other two goals weren’t bad either.

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