Written by London Cherry
Wasn’t this great to see?! I wasn’t anticipating too much from today after a disappointing few months and lots of injury woes but boy am I delighted I forced myself out of my sick bed to watch the Cherries at their clinical best!
The game started with two teams looking short of confidence with passes going astray. A good cross from Wee Man (the first of many) was almost converted by Josh King whilst the Seagulls also had a good chance which was just out of the reach of their striker. Brighton had lots of possession during this period but were not threatening our ‘big pole in goal’. Then a wonderful passing move resulted in Callum Wilson squaring the ball back to Dan Gosling who was given the freedom of the box to turn and swivel a shot in the bottom corner. You could argue this was slightly against the run of play but you could see the confidence it gave the team as we pushed for a second before the break.
I think we were expecting the Seagulls to come out all guns blazing second half but it was the Cherries who struck again on 55 minutes. The ball was given away by Brighton (Hughton must be really frustrated how often this happened) Callum then made a tremendous forward burst before playing it to Wee Man on the edge of the box, the next thing I knew was that the ball was heading straight towards me behind the goal; queue delirium and a healthy lead! 2-0 is a dangerous scoreline but here is where the Seagulls imploded. Firstly, in what only could be described as one of the worst tackles I’ve seen live, Anthony Knockaert scythed down Adam Smith. A talented player, Knockaert hugely let his team down here and perhaps with it their safety?! This gave the Cherries an extra boost and from here it was one-way traffic, reminiscent of the Championship winning season. Josh King started the ball rolling with a lung-bursting run before David Brooks took over and after playing a one-two with Wee Man he easily slotted it under Ryan in the Brighton goal. This might have been aided by the sliding Dunk but it was still a first-class goal. Cherries oozed confidence and swagger at this stage as thousands of Brighton fans left their seats. Another Cherries interception from Ake resulted in another counterattack for Wee Man who teed up Callum who twisted and turned to slot the ball passed the outstretched hands of Ryan. 0-4 and I was fearing my wife’s family (Seagulls fans) might not speak to me again! It only got worse for the remaining home fans who stayed behind as a terrific interception by Lerma eventually resulted in Brooks taking the ball in acres of space. An easy pass into Stanislas path meant Junior didn’t have to break stride before he slotted it into the far corner! Were we playing in the Premier League with a scoreline like this?!! The final whistle brought the heroes in red over to our superb away fans. This will be a game we won’t forget in a long time!
Boruc 7 – Had nothing to do but kicked better I thought and helped the defence keep a clean sheet. Definitely, our No 1 at the moment, would like Butland or Pope in the Summer
Ake 8 – I personally prefer Nathan in the middle but with an out of sorts Clyne out of form this was the right call for him to play left back. Made some great headers and overlapping runs
Cook 9 – Welcome back Cookie! When the team sheet came through this was the best news I’d seen all week! Cookie inspires the team and it was great to see him back in the red n black! Not as good as Dunk, Gareth?!
Mepham 7 – played well alongside Cookie but could have cost us with a show of petulance at the beginning of the 2nd half. Could have been a headbutt in my opinion
Smith 8 – I thought Smudger had an excellent game bombing down the right and I was relieved he wasn’t badly hurt in that Kung fu kick!
Lerma 8 – Great destructive player from Jeff today and excellent energy levels as displayed by his contribution to goal no 5
Gosling 8 – I am not a huge fan of Dan but you can’t fault his desire and energy levels. Took his goal well and showed great passion throughout the game. Need that creative midfielder next season though IMHO.
Brooks 7 – Had a quiet game for him but came to life in the final 20 minutes and took his goal well.
Fraser 10 – I’m worried this was the performance which might have convinced the big hitters. A constant thorn in the Seagulls defence scored a wonderful goal and set up almost every Cherries chance! Superb!
King 8 – Great pace showed by Josh today and linked well with the rest of the team
Wilson 8 – Delighted for Callum who got a well-deserved goal that his work rate dictated. Dunk and co will be pleased to see the back of him!
MOTM: Cookie was a close second but this has to go to Wee Man for a faultless winger’s game.
Final thought – I should be ill more often! What a tonic a 5-0 away victory is?! Eddie summed it up for me ‘consistency’. If we can work on this side of our game for next year we should be looking up rather than down. Let’s hope in the meantime we can hold on to our big players and add one or two bits of quality in between. Ultimately a fifth year in the best league in the world! Enjoy it!
West Moors Cherry wrote…
Just got back, still slightly hungover. Great report.
Man Of The Match Cookie for me was a rock. So pleased to see Mepham really growing in confidence. Lovely to see us rediscover our old selves.
As Hughton said, dynamic summed us up.
So glad I haven’t given up on going to games because “I find the football boring or one dimensional”
Some of the comments on here in the last two weeks have been laughable. Egg on faces yet again.
What a team, what a club and the support yesterday was outstanding for 90 minutes. – Join the conversation, click here.