Unfortunately for supporters of Brighton, Dan Burn has big feet.
If Burn were a size eight or nine, his left big toe would have been onside and Brighton would be joint top of the Premier League with Liverpool after the opening two matches.
As it is, the 6ft 7in Albion defender needs a large foot to keep his tall frame upright and Albion were forced to accept the first half VAR decision that ruled-out Leandro Trossard’s well-struck volley by the narrowest of margins. The point gained by Graham Potter’s team against a lively West Ham gives them a healthy four points from their opening two matches.
It could so easily have been two wins from two for Albion - particularly if substitute Neal Maupay had converted his late chance - but the commitment from the players and the attacking style of football was encouraging.
Potter also demonstrated he isn’t afraid to make the tough calls. Jurgen Locadia, who played very well in the opening day triumph at Watford, was left out of the starting XI and £18m summer signing Trossard was handed his Premier League debut. Potter later explained Lucadia’s physical attributes were more suited for Watford, while the intricacies of the young Belgian would cause greater problems to a mobile and slightly less robust West Ham defensive unit.
Potter, once again, was proved correct. Trossard, playing behind striker Glenn Murray, was excellent. At 5ft 6in, he is similar in height to his Belgian teammate Eden Hazard but Trossard, 24, is not yet as stocky or powerful. In pre-season the former Genk captain impressed, although concerns remained on how he would adapt to the Premier League.
Against West Ham he proved he is capable of being a force this season. It was a high-paced encounter and space to manoeuvre was at a premium but Trossard is a clever and nimble operator. West Ham struggled to track his movement and his first-time volley for the disallowed goal showed he can finish, too. He missed a decent chance in the second half but did get his reward with an accurate strike to equalise and earn his team a point after Javier Hernández had put the Hammers ahead. “It is faster and a little bit more physical, “ said Trossard after the match. “You have to think a little bit faster than your opponent, then you can beat them.”
It wasn’t just about speed of thought however. Trossard was also able to shine thanks to the non-stop efforts in central midfield by Dale Stephens and Davy Propper. Both are at ease in Potter’s 3-5-2 formation and back to their best after last season’s difficult campaign. Potter insists it’s all about the players and using them were they are strongest. So far so good in that respect.