Tag Archives: freddie goodwin

Obscure Albion kits: 1970/71 Home

‘Come on, you chalky whites… say cheese’. So proclaimed the Argus as Pat Saward’s squad posed for the cameras before the 1970/71 season:


Back row: Joe Wilson (chief scout), Howard Wilkinson, John Templeman, John Napier, Keith Watkins, Alan Gilliver, Alex Sheridan, Alex Dawson, Eddie Spearritt, Peter O’Sullivan;

Third row: Stewart Henderson, Terry Stanley, Bobby Smith, Geoff Sidebottom, Brian Powney, Paul Flood, Alan Duffy, Andy Marchant;

Second row: Mike Yaxley (trainer), Kit Napier, Nobby Lawton, Pat Saward (manager), Dave Turner, Norman Gall, Peter Dinsdale (coach);

Front row: Martin Tew, Gary Parsons, Mark Douglas, Mick Stanley.

A second shot, mainly of first-reamers, was also taken:


Back row: Howard Wilkinson, Alan Gilliver, John Napier, Peter O’Sullivan;

Middle row: Stewart Henderson, Bobby Smith, Geoff Sidebottom, Brian Powney, Eddie Spearritt, Alan Duffy;

Front row: Kit Napier, Alex Dawson, Nobby Lawton, Dave Turner, Norman Gall.

As John Vinicombe explained:

Albion’s playing staff are seen here in their new strip for the first time. The outfit is predominantly white, with blue cuff and collar.

Giving a clue as to the location of the photo shoot, he added:

Pre-season training is being carried out at the University of Sussex, and manager Pat Saward said he had never seen such marvellous facilities made available for a professional club.

It is not particularly clear why the club ditched the familiar blue shirts with white sleeves after six years in favour of all-white. Perhaps it was to emulate Real Madrid or Leeds United. Or perhaps it was so the Albion players stood out under floodlights. Some online discussion suggests it was a change that was implemented by outgoing boss Freddie Goodwin rather than one introduced by the new man at the helm Pat Saward.

Here is a close-up of it sported by John Napier in the 1-0 victory over Aston Villa in March 1971:


It was even worn with red socks during the penultimate match of the season, as by substitute Norman Gall against Bristol Rovers in May that season:


Unsurprisingly, the all-white number proved unpopular with Goldstone regulars, so different it was from what they classed as a Brighton and Hove Albion home kit. As part of Pat Saward’s drive to build a stronger bond with supporters, he listened to supporters, and brought back the famous blue and white stripes after a long absence in time for the 1971/72 campaign.

Tagged , , ,

With Wolves visiting, Cup fever grips Brighton

The League Cup captured the imagination of Sussex in the autumn 1969. In August, Freddie Goodwin’s side put one over south coast rivals Portsmouth, with Alex Dawson getting the only goal, Then the Albion toppled First Division side Birmingham City, 2-0, in front of 24,232 supporters to set up a mouth-watering third round tie with mighty Wolverhampton Wanderers on 24th September.

With Brighton going well in Division Three, the level of interest in the floodlit match was such that the Evening Argus produced a four page A3 colour supplement as a preview to the game:

Back row: Mike Yaxley (coach), Terry Stanley, George Dalton, Barrie Wright, Bobby Smith, Mike Everitt, Dave Armstrong, Ken Blackburn, Joe Wilson (trainer); Middle row: Tom E. Whiting (chairman), Brian Powney, Andy marchant, Stewart Henderson, Dave Turner, John Napier, Norman, Gall, John Templeman, Paul Flood, Geoff Sidebottom, Harold Paris (vice-chairman); Front row: Howard Wilkinson, Alex Dawson, Kit Napier, Eddie Spearritt, Freddie Goodwin (manager), Nobby Lawton, Willie Bell, Allan Gilliver, Brian Tawse. Sitting: Martin Tew, Keith Watkins, Michael Stanley, Garry Parsons.

Back row: Mike Yaxley (coach), Terry Stanley, George Dalton, Barrie Wright, Bobby Smith, Mike Everitt, Dave Armstrong, Ken Blackburn, Joe Wilson (trainer);
Middle row: Tom E. Whiting (chairman), Brian Powney, Andy marchant, Stewart Henderson, Dave Turner, John Napier, Norman, Gall, John Templeman, Paul Flood, Geoff Sidebottom, Harold Paris (vice-chairman);
Front row: Howard Wilkinson, Alex Dawson, Kit Napier, Eddie Spearritt, Freddie Goodwin (manager), Nobby Lawton, Willie Bell, Allan Gilliver, Brian Tawse.
Sitting: Martin Tew, Keith Watkins, Michael Stanley, Garry Parsons.

Rather generously, the back page was mainly devoted to a colour photo of the visitors:


As you can see, Wolves’ skipper was Mike Bailey, who would go on to lift the League Cup trophy four and half years later, in an entertaining 2-1 victory over Manchester City in 1974. Unfortunately, injury kept him out of this match. Had he travelled to the Goldstone, he would have seen a huge crowd of 32,539 supporters. What a contrast to the falling gates when he took over as Brighton boss in 1981.

In John Vinicombe’s match report, the Argus writer declared:

Albion should have beaten Wolves out of sight at the Goldstone last night. For close on 70 minutes they were Wolves’ masters and thoroughly deserved a 2-1 lead with Hugh Curran, the player Albion tried hardest to subdue, won the game with a two-goals-in-eight-minutes burst. So Wolves entered the fourth round of the Football League Cup when it looked for so long like a major upset before a 34,000 crowd that set up a floodlit ground record.

The 3-2 skin-of-the-teeth success was highly flattering to a side standing fourth in the First Division. But in the final analysis they displayed their class by twice coming back to steal a place in the last 16. They owed it all to Curran whose stealth stamped him as a superb turner of half-chances into goals.

Yet Wolves were given a tremendous fright by an inspired Albion, and were unable to find their bearings without Mike Bailey supplying the drive and Derek Dougan his own brand of inspiration.

Napier (left) and Gilliver rise to head...

Napier (left) and Gilliver rise to head…

Dawson holds his hands aloft as Gilliver tumbles between the defenders, with ball in the net

Dawson holds his hands aloft as Gilliver tumbles between the defenders, with ball in the net

On nineteen minutes, Albion took the lead when Kit Napier’s inswinging corner was missed by Wolves keeper Parker, who seemed more worried by big Alex Dawson. He seemed to push Dawson, which may have warranted a penalty, but Allan Gilliver showed his goal touch to squeeze the ball home at the far post.

However, Wolves hit back twelve minutes later when Wagstaffe intercepted Nobby Lawton’s pass. The Wolves player ran on and on, and it became one on one with Geoff Sidebottom once John Napier slipped. He then fed Woodfield who slotted home the equaliser.

Eddie Spearritt plants his head onto the ball...

Eddie Spearritt plants his head onto the ball…

...which disappears in a mountain of toilet roll in the back of the net.

…which disappears in a mountain of toilet roll in the back of the net.

On the stroke of half-time, though, Brighton delighted the home crowd by retaking the lead. Kit Napier’s free-kick found Eddie Spearritt who guided a header just under the crossbar.

With Albion dominant, an upset was on the cards. But Wolves were not finished, and Hugh Curran raced on to a huge defence-spliting goal kick from Parkes to equalise with twenty minutes to spare. Curran then broke Albion hearts on 78 minutes, making the most of a mix-up at the far post. Sidebottom and Turner had left it for each other to deal with Wagstaffe’s harmless looking cross, allowing Curran to nip in.

Even so, Albion played stoutly during the evening, none more so than Stewart Henderson who had a storming match.


Henderson, a small and classy right-back, would go on to be voted by supporters as their Player of the Season.

Tagged , , , , ,

Energy drinks, Albion’s secret weapon in 1969!

Skipper Nobby Lawton has his energy drink poured by manager Freddie Goodwin

Skipper Nobby Lawton has his energy drink poured by manager Freddie Goodwin

An Argus piece in September 1969, by John Vinicombe and Alan Jones. It was published in the week before Brighton’s much anticipated League Cup tie against First Division giants Wolverhampton Wanderers:

How come they’re unbeaten in the first eight matches? What’s so special about the Goldstone outfit that Brighton’s start is a talking point all over the country?

The fact that Albion have drawn Wolves in the League Cup has set everybody talking. People who wouldn’t ordinarily go outside the back door to see Albion now want tickets. Residents half a mile from the ground have been offered money for use of their drives o the night of the match.

No doubt tickets will go at inflated prices on a mini black market. Suddenly it is the in thing to watch a side who were in danger of finishing Third Division chumps in the middle of last season.
Come Wednesday, September 24, and a 35,000 capacity crowd will see Albion battle with Wolves for the right to enter the fourth round of the competition. The fervour building-up is more on par with an FA Cup semi-final. That’s football for you, up one day, down the next.

The fundamental answer to all the questions about Albion’s current high-riding spot is, of course, that the club is jus beginning to benefit from the systematic preparation begun by manager Freddie Goodwin and his staff way back in the summer.

Goodwin believes in thorough, painstaking attention to detail. He’s not one for the instant method. But that isn’t to say Freddie scorns everything trendy, or that he is one of those ivory tower figures who conduct affairs from a remote office. He’s a players’ manager through and through, and one innovation may partly explain Albion’s fitness.

In America, Freddie discovered a product developed by the University of Florida for the Gemini space programme that has a sporting application. It is a powder form drink called Gatorade. A 2oz packet makes two pints of a delicious drink tasting something like sherbet. But it is the effect on footballers that impressed Goodwin.

“Quick replacement of salt has been a problem for ages, but Gatorade overcomes this. The salt lost in the first half is replaced almost immediately, and I think our players are all the better for drinking this during the interval. It is used at Wimbledon, and I believe Liverpool are trying it.”

The powder contains glucose, citric acid, sodium chloride, sodium citrate, gum acacia, sodium orthophosphate, potassium orthophosphate, chloride, flavourings, and colour. One swig and the players take on the aspect of cartoon characters in a speeded-up film…

The old ritual of a steak three hours before an away game has been replaced by Freddie introducing the players to a pre-match cup of tea, slice of toast, and honey.

“I have always felt that there is a tendency to eat too much, particularly when travelling. I changed our eating habits on the summer tour or Ireland, and the players say they feel better for it. I think sometimes there has been a little lethargy on the field as a result of eating steak. The lads seem to go much better on honey.”

And left over from the Ireland trip, appropriately from the land of superstition, is the story of Freddie’s lightweight tan suit. Freddie didn’t wear it for the last match of the tour at Limerick, and Albion lost. He started the season wearing it, and now each match day will touch no other. “I don’t believe in these sort of things, lucky charms and all that, but the players feel more comfortable going out there to see me wearing it. Mind you, I’ll freeze to death in winter…”

To see how Goodwin’s side, aided by Gastorade and a tan suit, fared against Wolves, tune in to The Goldstone Wrap tomorrow…


Tagged ,

Colour photo from 1969: Brighton v Barnsley

Here’s a stunning photo from 5th April 1969 in match with Barnsley at the Goldstone Ground, with an excellent view of the South East corner:

brighton barnsley 1969

The photo is from QueenSpark’s Brighton & Hove Photographic Collection

With a Tykes player on each post, it looks like the Yorkshiremen are defending a corner. Unlike what is common practice nowadays, it seems that back in the 1960s the attacking side did not throw that many players forward for this set-piece. At least from this photo, anyway. From left to right, The Albion players are Dave Armstrong, Alex Dawson and John Napier.

Dawson looks ready to pounce on any indecision. Legend has it that this is a scenario that would often lead to ball and goalkeeper in the back of the net!

The match ended in a 4-1 victory for the Albion in front of 11,410 supporters. Armstrong, Spearritt, Turner and Dawson scored. Having stood in 23rd position on 14th December 1968, the win took Freddie Goodwin’s side to sixth position in Division Three. However, poor form in the last three matches, and other teams having games in hand, meant that Albion eventually finished 12th.

Tagged , , ,

The inner game of Freddie Goodwin


Years ahead of his time? Or patronising messages from a cod pychologist?

From Football League Review in the 1969/70 season, with photo by Peter Robinson:

Brighton manager Freddie Goodwin reckons he has part of the answer to easing pre-match dressing room tensions… a dose of philosophy and a touch of psychology.

For the walls of the home dressing room at the Goldstone Ground are decorated with the thoughts of manager Fred – philosophical titbits for his players.

Examples: “It’s tough at the top – it’s hell anywhere else.” … “We supply everything here except guts.” … “Exhaustion – when one needs help to be sick.”

Explains the young Brighton boss: “It’s an idea I picked up in the States. Try to condition players to think in depth about the game and life in general, and it helps everyone.”

The former Manchester United and Leeds defender who took over the Brighton job after a spell in America has taken a night-school course in psychology. “I am sure it helps in a job like this when you are dealing with people of different temperaments,” he says.

Does philosophy in the dressing room help results on the field? Says Fred: “It may just be coincidence but after I had put up the sayings on the wall last January, the team hit a good patch of form.”

So teams visiting Brighton this season beware.., you’ll be facing 11 players with this thought in mind: “Success for the club adds up to better money for everyone.”

Whatever the positive effects the sloganeering may have provided, they must have wore off by the time Albion’s promotion push from Division Three hit the rocks in late March 1970. By mid-April, it was exhausted. To note one of the messages in Goodwin’s hand, I’m not sure anyone needed help to be sick then.


Freddie’s stars on the rise in 1969/70

I hadn’t heard of Striker magazine until recently. However, besides weekly columns of Colin Bell and Peter Osgood (ghostwritten, presumably) they were kind enough to print a Brighton team photo on 13th June 1970 (Issue 23):


That was a fine Albion side in 1969/70, with Nobby Lawton, Kit Napier, Alex Dawson and Willie Bell at the heart of a team seeking promotion to the Second Division. Led by manager Freddie Goodwin, Brighton hit good form at the start of the campaign, winning six and drawing two of their opening eight matches. In Soccer Star magazine on 26th September 1969, Maurice Weedon found the Albion boss in a cautious mood:

Over the years managers have told me many things but never until I spoke to Fred Goodwin of Brighton had one told me he wishes he could dampen the enthusiasm of the club’s supporters. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that Goodwin isn’t appreciative of the support Brighton is receiving and I hasten to add that he told me no club has a finer bunch of supporters “… they are the best in the country” he added.

The reason for Goodwin’s statement is that due to Brighton’s fine start in Division III’s promotion struggle and their first and second round wins in the Football League Cup when they defeated Portsmouth 1-0 through a goal by Alex Dawson and their 2-0 win [over Birmingham] (Alan Gilliver and Kit Napier). Brighton supporters are already counting the side as good as in Division II next April.


“We have a great chance,” Goodwin told me, “But I am not thinking about winning promotion. My immediate aim is always to win the next match, and if we can do that promotion will take care of itself”.

A wise outlook and one which is bringing results. It is worth recalling that their win over Birmingham came a few days after the Midlands club had thrashed Second Division Leaders Queens Park Rangers 3-0, Bert Murray grabbing a hat-trick within the first 15 minutes, yet for the match at Goldstone Ground Birmingham were never really in with a chance•.

The slick-moving Brighton side got their grip on the game when Gilliver gave them the lead in the seventh minute and Brighton were in command right to the finish. The fact that there was no going on defence is shown by the way Kit Napier, Dawson and John Napier went near before Kit Napier added the second near the close.

This is typical of Brighton. No holding on to a one-goal lead. They are always on the lookout for goals which is the reason why they are so well supported – for fans always respond to attractive football.

On the opening day of the season Brighton had an attendance of 11,250 (only Luton’s 12,800 was bigger in Division III) and this was 2,000 up on the first home game last season, and the trend has continued.

The second home game attracted 13,900, as against 11,600 last campaign. “Not only are the attendances up, but the cheering and encouragement means a lot to our players”, Goodwhi said.

This was followed by 14,000 for the visit of Rochdale and 20,000 for the game with Portsmouth and 24,000 when they defeated Birmingham City, and it is good to see the revival Goodwin has brought to the Sussex side attracting the fans in such increasing numbers.

“It’s wonderful the backing we are getting from local people. It is just that I want them to realise that there is a long way to go before the end of the season, and I don’t want anybody to underestimate the task before us”, explained Goodwin.

There are just two new players, this season left-back Willie Bell (from Leicester) and Alan Gilliver (from Rotherham). In answer to my question, how they are getting along Goodwin’s reply was that both players have fitted into the side perfectly.

“Both are the finest type of player”, he said. He added that Bell’s experience has brought strength to the defence, and has given a solidity; which never weakens under pressure, “…A really wonderful signing,” was the manager’s comment.

He said that the Sussex air must suit Gilliver, for last season he netted two goals in 22 League appearances with Rotherham while he passed this figure in just a couple of matches, and has not stopped banging in goals.• “Alan is a wonderful character, always full of life and he and Alex Dawson are a great pair of comedians off the field,” Goodwin told me.

alex-dawsonHe added that with Dawson being the danger man last season defences were beginning to make a set for him, “… but Gilliver is a big, strong player and takes some of the weight of Dawson”, said Goodwin. This gives more fluency to the attack and with goal-snatchers like Kit Napier, Nobby Lawton and Eddie Spearritt around they are giving opposing goalkeepers a busy time.

There has been much talk about Brighton having three captains Nobby Lawton, Willie Bell and Alex Dawson, and I asked Goodwin how this plan is working. “It isn’t correct to say we have three captains as some papers have reported, we have only one, Nobby” explained Goodwin He went on “The correct position is that as the state of the game can change in a flash, Bell makes on-the-spot decisions when we are under pressure, while when we are on the attack Dawson makes snap judgements.”

He said the scheme was devised by Lawton and himself before the season opened and is working very well. Goodwin said the success of the side – average age 26 – comes through team-work with every player giving all he has not only for the 90 minutes of a match, but in training sessions, practice games and tactical get-together, … “another example of what a grand bunch of players there are here,” Goodwin said, adding that the side is as full of confidence as any he has seen.

The club has four apprentice-professionals, a new venture, and there are some promising youngsters. If a team is to win promotion it is essential to have cover for all positions, and Goodwin told me the reserves are as promotion-minded as the first team and should injury hit the side there are good players ready to step into the team.

This season Brighton are running a reserve side, something which was lacking last season. They play in the London Midweek League and there is also a Sunday morning side for juniors and as Goodwin watches every match it means he sees at least three games a week.

This, plus supervising training and the 101 other jobs of a manager means Goodwin has little time for leisure, but he loves every minute of his job, • “…for to be in a town so football conscious as Brighton is very encouraging” he said.

Towards the end of last season I wrote that Brighton could be THE team of Division III this campaign and with around a quarter of the season gone I am more convinced than ever this can prove so, and I am writing this before Brighton play Wolverhampton at Goldstone Ground in the third round of the Football League Cup.

As Goodwin doesn’t like too much talk of promotion at stage of the season, I’ll just say I think they will win enough matches to finish higher than most teams and leave it at that.

The Albion certainly finished higher than the 12th position they mustered in 1968/69, reaching fifth spot, but a disappointing late run of four defeats in five led to their promotion hopes evaporating. The club had held top spot as late as March 28th.

Worse was to come when Freddie Goodwin left in the summer, taking coach Willie Bell and junior team coach George Dalton with him to Birmingham.

As the rest of the football world turned its attention to the World Cup in Mexico, Albion had to start again in finding a manager capable of leading the club into Division Two.

Tagged , , ,

Brighton’s Team Photo 1969/70


After getting knocked out of the FA Cup by Walsall in a long-running FA Cup 2nd Round tie that went to three replays in December 1969, Freddie Goodwin’s side embarked on a scintillating run of form of fourteen victories in nineteen league matches. Supported by new striker Alan Duffy, who had a sensational debut against Bradford in January, the team (dressed above in kit that made them look like a blue Arsenal) were sitting pretty at the top of Division Three at the start of the Easter schedule. However, four defeat in five games put paid to the promotion dreams. Goodwin left for Birmingham City in the summer.

Tagged ,