Brighton 2 Arsenal 3 comment: Tomas Rosicky delivers master-class for the Gunners

When he plays this well it is only right to celebrate what a watchable natural footballer he is

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Who could ever blame Arsene Wenger for rotation, when rotation means more Tomas Rosicky? The little Czech midfielder delivered a master-class in the game today, the sort of performance that only he can give, and that he gifts us a few times every season.

There is sometimes regret, about the gap between what Rosicky has achieved in his career, and what he could have done had his body allowed him. But when he plays this well it is only right to celebrate what a watchable natural footballer Rosicky is.

Clearly, there are games that suit Rosicky and games that do not. He was not trusted to start at the Etihad Stadium last Sunday, Arsene Wenger preferring more physical durability. But here in Brighton, with a team-ful of changes, Rosicky was restored.

Secured in a midfield with Aaron Ramsey and Mathieu Flamini, Rosicky had a perfect platform to run the game. Brighton were arranged in a fairly basic 4-4-1-1 and Rosicky always had more than enough space to exploit.


Always aware of the runners in front of him, Rosicky played the perfect through pass to Mesut Ozil, darting into a gap, to set up the first goal. Brighton knew that Rosicky was a threat but they could not lay a finger on him, and he took advantage. Some of his touches and feints were delightful, and there was even a ‘no-look pass’ that was classic Rosicky: imaginative, aesthetic and effective.

The highlight of the whole afternoon, though, the move that summed up all of his special gifts, came half-way through the second half. Skipping past tackles on the edge of the box, Rosicky laid the ball to Olivier Giroud and pulled away, The return pass came back and Rosicky, as ever technically perfect, volleyed it into the bottom corner of the net.

There was one more perfect cross to Aaron Ramsey, which he could not convert, the last action of the game. Arsenal did not need it, Rosicky had already done enough