Monthly Archives: April 2013

Panini’s Football ’83: The Last Ones Standing


After a four year spell of uphill struggle, punctuated by some occasional famous victories, the team of 1982/83 was the last Brighton side to take part in First Division football.

As you can see, the dour Mike Bailey was still in charge when these stickers were printed. He gave way to Jimmy Melia and George Aitken as joint-caretaker managers in December 1982 after some horrific away performances in the League. The Albion board clearly felt they could do with a change.


And perhaps Panini also felt they could do with a change. The long, narrow stickers with a full-body pose marked a striking break from the tried-and-tested formula of head-and-body shots of previous Panini albums. Would have been interesting to see them trying to fit Melia and Aitken in the new sticker dimensions!

Graham Moseley, like all the other keepers in this album, was clearly instructed by the artistic director to hold the ball with his hands in some way, while the outfield players were possibly given the choice to put a foot on the ball or let it lay in front of them. Hands on hips / crossed in front / behind back also formed the orders of the day with only Jimmy Case ventured beyond the conventional to try some outlandish ‘both hands on one thigh’ combination. Elsewhere on the other pages of this album, you can see players with hands to protect their groin region or posing with socks but no boots on!


However, it was back to the standard head-and-shoulders fare by Football ’84. Didn’t make much difference as far as Brighton & Hove Albion was concerned, as never again were we to enjoy a double page Panini sticker album spread of our side.

Notable other stickers in Football ’83 include future skipper Doug Rougvie and future Brighton manager Mark McGhee in the magnificent Aberdeen side that was to taste European Cup Winners’ Cup glory in the 1982/83 campaign.

Future Albion goalkeeping coach Tony Godden was West Brom’s goalie.

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The Goldstone Staff Photo 1979

I received an email from the son of Fred Woolven with this intriguing photo attached:


The photo also appears in the Argus supplement ‘Division One Here We Come’ from 1979, along with this useful key to the Albion family:


The manager, the players, the board capture all the limelight as Albion soar to success. But there is more to the Goldstone than that. Many people work away, unnoticed, in the background, to ensure that the Seagulls take wing. Here we present the Goldstone team in full, from chairman Mike Bamber to tea lady and cleaner Hilda Bennett, who has been producing the match day cuppas for many a year now.

1. Tony Millard. Freelance journalist, Tony, became programme editor and announcer at the Goldstone this season.
2. John Shepherd. Ex-Albion player, John, is now the youth team manager, having had spells in local soccer management. He has also managed both the Sussex County FA side and Sussex County League Southwick.
3. Joan Shipp. She is promoter of the Seagull Lottery, which brings in £250,000 a year for the Albion. She came to the Goldstone five seasons ago from the Sussex Sunday League, along with commerical manager Ron Pavey.
4. Jeanne Carter. She has been with the Albion for about three years and is secretary to manager Alan Mullery and club secretary Ken Calver.
5. Mike Yaxley. Ex-Brighton, Hove and Sussex Grammar School teacher, Mike, is in his second spell with the Albion. He was on the coaching staff from 1968-73, became a sales rep, and managed Eastbourne united and is now physiotherapist.
6. Ken Craggs. Former teammate of manager Alan Mullery in Fulham days, Ken came from Craven Cottage early last year and is assistant manager.

Half-Million Pound Team
Here is the nucleus of the commercial staff who help with the Albion’s fund raising schemes which bring in about half-a-million pounds a year. They are:
7. Bill Phillips.
8. Fred Woolven.
9. John McNichol.
10. Ray Woodford.
12. Allan Williams
13. Bill Allfrey.

11. Duncan Perry. Assistant to groundsman Frankie Howard.
14. Paul Burton. Assistant to maintenance man Sam Capon.
15. Nigel Williams. Assistant secretary Nigel came to the Goldstone from Fulham 12 months ago.

16. Peter Ward.
17. Mick Kerslake.
18. Paul Clark.
19. Malcolm Poskett.
20. Gerry Ryan.
21. Peter O’Sullivan.
22. Peter Sayer.

23. Frankie Howard. Goldstone groundsman Frankie is an ex-Albion player who played in the 1958 promotion winning side.

24. Ken Tiler.
25. Gary Williams.
26. Chris Cattlin.
27. Martin Chivers.
28. Andy Rollings.
29. Graham Moseley.
30. Mark Lawrenson.
31. Teddy Maybank.
32. Eric Steele.

33. George Aitken. George hails from the North-East, having played for Middlesbrough and Workington and later managed Workington. He was brought to the Goldstone by Peter Taylor as coach.

34. Glen Wilson. He captained Albion’s promotion winning side of 1958 and is now kit man.

35. Sam Capon. Maintenance man Sam used to run is own business, but now he is the odd-job man who does what ever needs to be done.

36. Jackie Harriott. Has been with the commercial staff for 18 months assisting with fund-raising.

37. Hilda Barnett. She is the cleaner and on match days she is tea lady.

38. Arthur Mates. Latest addition to the fund-raising staff working on the new Wishbone Lottery.

39. Shirley Holland. Accountant and bookkeeper.

40. Ken Calver. Club secretary, Ken was previously with Charlton. The promotion celebrations saw him develop an unexpected talent for singing.

41. Alan Mullery. The ex-Fulham and England skipper who stepped into the Goldstone hot seat and despite having no managerial experience, has taken the club to its finest hour.

42. Herzi Sless. Club doctor.

43. Harry Bloom. The vice-chairman of Hove Motors and has now broadened his interests by becoming a hotelier.
44. Mike Bamber. The man who has masterminded Albion’s rise to glory, having made his money as a property developer.
45. Tom Appleby. Director Tom lives in Isfield. He is a farmer and a talented seven-handicap golfer.
46. Dudley Sizen. A director who runs a farm near Lindfield and has two plastics factories in Kent.
47. Brian Horton. The Albion skipper, whose initial attempt to get into professional football failed, has proved his abilities as a player and leader in the best possible way, with success.
48. Ron Pavey. Commercial manager, Ron has been the key to providing cash to carry Albion to success. He came to the Goldstone with experience of fund-raising as secretary to the Sussex Sunday League.

Out of the 48 here, Fred is the only one still employed by the club!

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Man Utd’s match in Brighton from 1985… according to The Simpsons!

Bizarrely, the Simpsons’ episode ‘Marge Gamer’ (Season 18 Episode 17) features a feisty scene from Manchester United’s match in Brighton.

“”Brighton, England. 1985. Manchester United play Sussexton Hamptonshire Unleaf (?), when a deadly riot breaks out in the stands. 22 years later, this riot is still going on.”


It wasn’t the only time that American depiction of the English game focused on hooliganism.

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Great Albion kits: 1985/86 Away


Worn in the famous snowy away tie in the FA Cup against Peterborough in February 1986, this striking kit is fondly remembered by Brighton fans of that time.

It had three large bold horizontal stripes on the side of the collar, a design that was unique to us despite all the other clubs that adidas manufactured shirts for at the time.

At the Peterborough game, the freezing Albion fans were given free red scarves. Brighton fan and North Stand Chat user Stat Brother has kept his in very good nick:


… although with Stat Brother’s six month old golden retriever Lionel around, it may not last forever!


A season later, NOBO replaced Phoenix Brewery as the sponsor for the Albion shirt.

As for Steve Gatting, he continued to serve well in whatever shirt he was asked to play in, red, blue, or even the green goalkeepers’ top:


A retrospective piece in the Albion programme in 1994/95 stated:

It has not been often in modern times that a player has served Albion continuously for ten years – Steve did so in defence or midfield and battled back from a bad pelvic injury to play again when many might have thrown in the towel. He was, indeed, a versatile player but he never scored an FA Cup goal for Albion – in fact, he once played for much of a League Cup match in goal when, at the City Ground, he replaced the injured Perry Digweed between the posts for Albion and he didn’t do at all badly.

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30 years today: Jimmy Case’s Semi-Final stunner

An FA Cup Semi-Final victory at Highbury in the sunshine. Great days. Sheffield Wednesday keeper Bob Bolder didn’t have a chance with this boulder (sorry!) flying through the air.

Quite fittingly, with a strike like this, the extract is from the back page of Roy of the Rovers magazine:


Notice the Brighton fan holding the sign ‘Case’ behind the goal.

Michael Robinson (who is in the photo) got his moment later on in the game.


Perry Digweed – My Fair Laddie


From Programme Plus:

Perry Digweed and Elisa Doolittle have a lot in common. Brighton’s brilliant young goalkeeper and ‘My Fair Lady’ share Covent Garden, London’s famous fruit and flower market, as their launching pad to stardom. Shaw’s heroine is, of course, a purely fictional filly. Brighton’s 21-year-old goalkeeper, signed for £150,000 from Fulham Reserves at the start of the year, is very much for real.

So real, in fact, that Ron Greenwood recently chose him for an England Under-21 International, after only three appearances in the First Division.

Since the international debut of the goalkeeper with the strange-sounding name – it could have been snipped from the pages of Boys’ Own Paper – has been delayed. But when Greenwood announced Digweed’s name in his squad to face Eire at Anfield, he also admitted:

“Perry was recommended to me when he was at Fulham, but playing in the reserves, it was difficult. Since joining Brighton, I watched him twice, and was very impressed.”

If and when he does win a full cap, the Digweed rags-to-riches story will be a real-life repetition of the Elisa Doolittle classic.”


Non-stop Turner is sure Brighton will go up


From Goal Magazine, 1969/70:

Dave Turner is one of the unsung heroes of Brighton. He has played nearly 300 games for the club, been involved in a Fourth Division championship victory, and is now in the middle of another bid for glory.

Brighton are fighting to get into the Second Division and the 26-year-old midfield star is a key man in their battle.

Ever since he joined them from Newcastle in December, 1963, Turner has played a vital role in the Brighton set-up.

It is Turner’s consistency which is helping Brighton in their promotion struggle. And he thinks they can do it.

He says: “I’m pretty confident we can go up. But so can any of the top ten at the moment. We’ve been playing well all season, but early on we just couldn’t get the right results. Everyone was getting a bit disappointed. Then everyone started getting stuck in a bit more – it began to pay off. We had a long undefeated run in the League after November and conceded only one goal in nine games. Even that was a penalty. The defence has been playing very well, and the whole team has been coming back and doing its fair share of the work. It would be nice to score a few more goals, but if you don’t let any in, it means you have at least one point before you start.”

Turner’s ample power and energy in the middle of the pitch was a key component of Albion’s play in the 1960s. As the 1970s began, it looked all set to push Albion over the final hurdle. Indeed, Brighton were in top spot after a 2-0 win over Reading on 27th March 1970. However, the side under Freddie Goodwin limped to a fifth spot finish after a wretched run of four defeats in the last five matches.

By the time Albion were promoted, in 1971/72 under Pat Saward, Dave Turner was a squad player. He had been hampered by a knee injury during the previous campaign and faced heavy competition from the peerless Brian Bromley from November 1971 onwards. Sadly, he did not experience Second Division football with Brighton, joining Blackburn on a free transfer in the summer of 1972.

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Did Albion really want promotion in 1976?

Some angry and sceptical letters from E.F. Russell and L. Revell in the Argus in April 1976, as Brighton’s promotion push in Division Three peters out with one win in their last eight matches, despite rookie striker Peter Ward hitting six goals in that period.


L. Revell (no relation to Alex?) wrote:

“Albion have been pipped for promotion once again. I would suggest that next season will be a bit of an anti-climax and that the efforts at home will not be as good as this year. So an enormous improvement would have to come about in away performances to have any sort of chance of going up. This being so, I doubt very much whether next season will bring promotion either. I have said repeatedly for years that I will never see Brighton in the First Division whatever age I reach.”

The understandable sense of frustration from season ticket holders such as him was probably not helped by the Argus reporting a few weeks before on the eve of the busy Easter schedule:

There is no specific promotion target for Albion manager Peter Taylor. With just four matches remaining, he is content to play each game as it comes. With the big game at Millwall coming up on Friday, Taylor said he was confident of a result. “But I am not thinking about a target. We shall continue to play our best.”

In the end, Albion were tonked 3-1 at the Den.

Happily, Revell’s pessimism was misplaced. In fact, 1976/77 went down as one of the most golden, most celebrated seasons in Albion history, signalling the start of the glory years. As formidable a home record as Brighton had in 1975/76 (W18 D3 L2), they improved their Goldstone record the following campaign (W19 D3 L1). In 1976/77, they also significantly enhanced that wretched away record, from W4 D6 L13 to W6 D8 L9.

However, it was to take all the motivational drive of Alan Mullery, and the deposing of top scorer Fred Binney (who got a mere five away League goals in 1975/76), to bring this to fruition. Peter Taylor had long departed, but he did also achieve promotion in 1976/77, with Brian Clough, of course, as Nottingham Forest sneaked back into Division One. Glory was just around the corner for them too.

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New items in the Seagulls Shop ’94


That navy blue bomber jacket still looks the bees’ knees!


In happier days: Danny Wilson


Sacked yesterday as manager by Sheffield United, fifth in League One, Danny Wilson has had much better times, not least in his playing days. Joining initially on loan from Nottingham Forest, Brighton fans remember Wilson fondly as a dynamic midfield player in the 1980s with great tackling and wonderful passing, as well as an eye for goal. Indeed, he opened the scoring in a 2-0 win at arch rivals Crystal Palace on Boxing Day 1983 and also hit the net at Selhurst Park the following season to rescue a point for the Albion in a 1-1 draw. All together, the inspirational midfielder played 135 League appearances for Albion, have signed in a bargain £45,000 deal in January 1984.

In Match Magazine, in November 1986, he said:

“We’ve struggled a lot with injuries and Alan Mullery has had to introduce a few young players to the first team. Inevitably it takes time for them to adjust. But we’ve been playing well and I feel we haven’t deserved to lose on some occasions. Promotion is still a possibility with three points for a win and, with the new play-off system in operation at the end of the season, Brighton have everything to play for.

Like every footballer, I want to play in the First Division and hopefully I’ll get back there with Brighton. I certainly see a long-term future on the south coast.”

In other news, Danny Wilson was called up by Billy Bingham for the Northern Ireland squad, with the Wigan-born player qualifying through his mother’s Londonderry birthplace.

“I’ve come across most of the other lads at some point during my football career and of course I know club mate Steve Penney well so settling down has been no problem.”

Wilson made three appearances for Northern Ireland as a Brighton player before his £150,000 move to Luton in July 1987.