Arsenal’s team bus was briefly delayed on the way to their 3-0 FA Cup third-round win at Blackpool on Saturday after a home fan climbed on to its roof in protest at the Lancashire seaside club’s owners.
The fan was photographed sitting on top of the coach at Arsenal’s team hotel shortly before the London side were to depart for the 5.30pm local time kickoff at Bloomfield Road.
Supporters of third-tier Blackpool have regularly protested against club owner Owen Oyston, and many are boycotting home games, with gates averaging only 4 129 at their 17 000-seater ground, which hosted Premier League football in 2010/11.
The protest did not last long, according to the BBC, and the Arsenal team arrived in good time for kickoff.
Despite fears of more protests, the tie was incident-free as Arsenal cruised to victory, with teenager Joe Willock scoring twice and Alex Iwobi once.
What could have been a tough assignment for Arsenal against a side who caused a scare in their League Cup clash earlier this season ended up being a comfortable outing, with a sparse home crowd out-sung by the Arsenal following.
Blackpool fan sits on top of Arsenal's team bus in protest as Unai Emery's men struggle to get Bloomfield Road for third round FA Cup clash pic.twitter.com/BTcaVRMOCd— Lilian Chan (@bestgug) January 5, 2019
The 19-year-old Willock became the youngest Arsenal player to score in an FA Cup tie since Aaron Ramsey in 2010.
His day could have been even better, but a linesman’s flag ruled out a hat trick goal.
“It’s a brilliant day for me on a personal note, but I’m proud of how we did as a team as well. I don’t think the score-line reflects how well we played,” he said.
“The linesman crushed my dreams with the hat trick, but that’s football, and hopefully I can get another opportunity soon. Hopefully the boss keeps believing in me.”Reuters