Key events

Something to read, obviously not about MEMEMEMEMEME … but I’ve been lucky enough to conduct a fair few interviews, and there’ve not been many during which I’ve had tears in my eyes throughout. But seeing how much this meant to Christopher and Max was so moving, and I hope other clubs see what can be done and do it.

Google reckon Grimsby will have three at the back and four in midfeld, but the way they announce their team on Twitter, it looks like the wing-backs are playing in defence. Most likely, though, the whistle goes and people run about.

As for Grimsby, they won 1-0 at Sutton in midweek and will, I think, go with a rarely seen 5-2-1-2 formation – yes, I know. Paul Hurst leaves out Amos, Morris, Lloyd and Taylor, bringing in Glennnon, Holohan, Khan and Orsi.

Elsewhere, by the way, Blackburn now lead Sheffield United for a second time. Follow that with John Brewin, here:

I’m guessing, but I think Roberto De Zerbi is going with Solly March at right-back,. But he might be shoving the so-far-disappointing Undav there – we shall see. Otherwise, though, there are three changes from the midweek, er, derby win that got Patrick Vieiera sacked: Veltman in unavailable, so Undav comes in, while, Webster replaces Colwill at centre-back and Ferguson is preferred to Welbeck.


Brighton: Sánchez; March, Webster, Dunk, Estupiñán; Gross, Caicdedo; Undav, Mc Allister, Mitoma; Ferguson. Subs: Steele, Colwill, Welbeck Sarmiento, Enciso, Ayari, Van Hecke, Veltman, Buonanotte.

Grimsby: Crocombe, Efete, Waterfall, Smith, Maher, Glennon, Green, Holohan, Clifton, Khan, Orsi. Subs: Battersby, Pearson, Emmanuel, McAtee, Hunt, Morris, Amos, Taylor, Khouri.


On the 20th February 1983, Brighton visited Liverpool in the FA Cup. The hosts had gone 63 home Cup games without defeat, a run that went back to November 1974, so few at Anfield expected anything other than a 64th in the ground’s first ever Sunday game, Everton having been drawn at Goodison and played on the Saturday. Appetites must, though, have been whetted by the prospect of Graeme Souness and Jimmy Case reconvening for some real football men action.

In the event, though, Brighton won 2-1. Gerry Ryan put them in front, and though Craig Johnston then equalised, Case rammed home a terrific winner a minute later – after which Phil Neil missed a penalty – before the Seagulls binned Norwich and Wednesday to make the final.

Since then, they’ve done no better than the last eight and that only twice, but they’re now a better team than they’ve ever been – they deservedly beat Liverpool in round four – and will seriously fancy their chances of going all the way this time. It’s true that, as in 1983, the possibility of losing the final to Man United exists, but should those teams meet again, Brighton won’t go into the match off the back of an unsuccessful fight against relegation. They will, though, know that they’re getting a bit good for the richer clubs’ liking, which is to say that hanging onto their best players this summer will a struggle, and though they’ve a terrific manager and set-up so are well-placed to go again, will still know that this is a chance and therefore the pressure is on.

Grimsby, meanwhile, are 14th in League 2. But in the course of their frankly rrrrridiculous Cup run, they’ve become the first team ever to beat five clubs from higher divisions in consecutive matches, and the feelgood factor extends beyond the football. Frequently derided by people with no grasp of politics, community and simple decency, the town of Grimsby is now “in a good moment”, a centre of green energy renewing itself in parallel, while Grimsby Town are doing likewise, one good performance away from the semi-finals of the FA Cup having spent 2010-2016 outside the Football League. Here we go, here we go, here we go!

Kick-off: 2.15pm GMT

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