Albion can follow in the footsteps of Michael Yardy

En route to the Amex on Tuesday, I worked in the afternoon at the County Ground in Hove.

En route to the Amex on Tuesday, I worked in the afternoon at the County Ground in Hove hoping to catch what was to be some of the final glimpses of Michael Yardy's Sussex cricketing career.

A trip to Yorkshire beckons for his final match, but a century was a fitting end to his playing career at his second home. At the time, my colleagues from the BBC commentary team were discussing the merits of playing off the front and back foot at the crease and how styles have changed over the years.

Like Yardy's beloved West Ham United on Monday night against Newcastle, the Albion have also set the pace this season. Not just with results, but also in the opening exchanges in each match.

Chris Hughton's side have certainly been playing on the front foot this year - with an instensity, an energy, and a more positive approach right from the opening whistle. And it certainly seems to be paying off.

In fact, the Seagulls have gone ahead in every single game they have played this season in all competitions, including the defeat to Walsall. At Huddersfield, the Albion exploded into life with Beram Kayal's goal in 17 seconds. Already this season, the struggle of Premier League teams at home has been debated long and hard with the away side able to attack on the break. But this year, both home and away, the Albion have been able to close out games after a solid foundation early on in the game. They have scored in the first half of each of their last seven games.

Of course, the quality of the players, the balance of the side, and the organisation of the management team are all key to the success so far this season. A positive approach, however, is reaping dividends.

Last season, fans might have been forgiven for settling for two draws from trips to Wolves and Bolton; this year, three points from both is a realistic aim.

If Hughton's side continue to perform on the front foot, they might yet emulate Michael Yardy who has had a brilliant career while overcoming his own challenges. The Sussex batsman was, and is, a winner. The Seagulls may yet follow in his footsteps as he calls time on a wonderful innings.