Tag Archives: jimmy case

The Boys in the Old Brighton Blue

Here are the the 12″ and 7″ versions of Brighton’s 1983 FA Cup Final song, with ‘The Goldstone Rap’ as the B-Side, released on Energy Records:


With superb attention to detail, the front and back covers had lavish designs that helped to soften the blow to club sponsors British Caledonian Airways, whose name would not feature on the players’ shirts on Cup Final day, due to TV regulations at the time:



Back row: Michael Robinson, Steve Gatting, Gordon Smith, Graham Moseley, Perry Digweed, Gary Stevens, Steve Foster, Jimmy Case;

Middle row: Sammy Nelson, Giles Stille, Neil Smillie, Tony Grealish, Graham Pearce, Gary Howlett, Gerry Ryan;

Front row: Terry Connor, Chris Ramsey.

I originally bought the 12″ from one of the second hand record shops on Trafalgar Road, Brighton. Not sure how much it cost me, but it was considerably less than the £50 forked out by one of The Seagulls Love Review fanzine lads, Stefan, at a BHACHS auction at Withdean about five years ago!

You can see a dance performance to this song here:

The song can be heard in its entirety below:

In case you want to have a sing-a-long, the rather corny lyrics are:

come on you seagulls, we’ll follow you
come on you seagulls, we’ll see you through
come on you seagulls, we’ll follow you
the boys in the old Brighton blue

verse 1
we are the boys in the white and the blue
football’s our game, Brighton’s our name
we are the team who’ll be out there for you
the boys in the old brighton blue

verse 2
here we are on the road to wembley way
fighting hard for our place on that day
for the pride of our town down by the sea
we’ll do our best to bring them victory

verse 3
cause we are the boys in the white and the blue
football’s our game, Brighton’s our name
follow the flag we’ll be flying for you
the boys in the old Brighton blue

reprise chorus

verse 4
as we go on our way to meet the best
once again we’ll be put to the test
but we’ll play like we always try to do
we won’t give up until the game is through

verse 5
we are the boys in the white and the blue
football’s our game, Brighton’s our name
follow the flag we’ll be flying for you
the boys in the old brighton blue

verse 6
follow the boys in the white and the blue
football’s our game, Brighton’s our name
follow the flag we’ll be flying for you
the boys in the old Brighton blue (twice)

reprise chorus with last line sang twice

I have been told that the lyrics of Albion’s FA Cup final song were reproduced on an A4 sheet which was distributed over the counter at the Seagulls Shop.

In the end, the song reached number 65 in the UK singles chart. Not a bad achievement considering the song wasn’t all that good!

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Great Albion Kits: 1980/81 to 1983/84 Away

Strangely, when Adidas took over the contract to supply the Brighton kit from the 1980/81 season onwards, they did not sell replicas of the yellow away kit.

It took until the 21st century for the club to issue a remake of this polyester wonder for the club shop, but understandably it came without the trefoil on the breast and the classic adidas stripes down the sleeves. However, this was addressed in a Thailand factory somewhere as this effort did the rounds on eBay a few years ago:


Although the collar was not as flared as the original, it was a pretty faithful rendition. The most glaring error is that it was ‘British Caledonian Airways’ for the change shirt, not just ‘British Caledonian’. If you want to be extra picky, the type of the sponsors’ logo was also not in bold, which is how it was in the Thai version. A good effort, nevertheless.

The kit was usually combined with yellow shorts and yellow socks, and very smart it looked too, especially on a sunny day. Sometimes, though, blue shorts and socks were worn instead:


At the time of the launch of the kit, Football League clubs were not allowed to wear shirt sponsors on televised matches apart from local news. This led an incident where ITV could not show highlights of Aston Villa’s match with Brighton in October 1980, as the Seagulls sought to protect their sponsorship interests. As the Brighton v Middlesbrough programme said:

There was controversy before the match when ATV, the Midlands ITV company, wanted to film the game, to show highlights the following evening in a two-minute news sequence. The Albion were however clad in the yellow ‘British Caledonian’ shirts and after a ‘phone call between Alan Mullery and Gary Newbon, the TV presenter, it was clear that the game could to be shown. Albion were well within their rights to refuse to change, other than for a featured game and ATV felt that the regulations would not allow the showing.

Minus a shirt sponsor, the all-yellow kit combination made the cover of Rothmans Football League Players Records 1946-1981:


However, it got its best exposure at the FA Cup Semi-Final between Brighton and Sheffield Wednesday. It even outlasted the home version, as it was worn for a few matches in the 1983/84 when the new white away kit did not provide enough contrast at the likes of Bristol Rovers and Blackburn.

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Happy 60th birthday, Jimmy Case!

For he’s a jolly good fellow, for he’s a jolly good fellow! Yes, it’s a special day for for one James Robert Case, who hits the big 6-0 today. It doesn’t seem that long ago when Jimmy was a 39 year old, plying his trade as a footballer at Brighton & Hove Albion.

Here is a superb interview by Harry Pratt from Matchday magazine (March 1994) all about his return to the Goldstone Ground:


Jimmy Case is completing his 20th season in the professional game. Yet he retains the enthusiasm and dedication more readily associated with a teenage trainee.

That has been the Case way throughout a career that has taken him from the mighty heights of Liverpool to the lower regions of non-League football with Sittingbourne.

Despite being 39, Case was still the target for Liam Brady when he took over as manager of struggling Brighton towards the end of last year.

Brady saw Case as the perfect player-coach as he began the difficult task of arresting Brighton’s dramatic plunge into the Second Division relegation area.

For Case, who after a nomadic 12 months had suddenly found himself playing in the Beazer Homes Premier Division with Sittingbourne, Brady’s job offer was a Godsend.


‘I think Liam reckoned Brighton were light in midfield and while talking among friends my name cropped up,’ says Liverpool-born Case.

‘I had no hesitation in accepting. I still have the appetite for the game and want to continue playing for as long as possible.

‘I had only come across Liam a few times before coming to Brighton. But I knew all about his footballing ability. I used to play against him, but we never came too close together. Liam was not keen on crunching tackles!

‘But seriously, he had tremendous vision and superb passing ability that few have matched. The main difficulty was getting the bail off him.’


Case was the complete midfielder in his prime when he graced the all-conquering Liverpool team of the 1970s. Tenacious in the tackle and a quality passer, his blistering shot and a willingness to run himself into the ground made him a vital component of Bob Paisley’s team.

His first professional season at Anfield was 1973-74, and in the next eight years Case won virtually very club honour in the game – four League Championships, three European Cups, one UEFA Cup and one League Cup. The only things missing from his collection was an FA Cup winners’ medal he scored in the 2-1 defeat by Manchester United in the 1977 Final – and an England cap.

In today’s era he would surely have been an England regular. But he was unfortunate that in his heyday there was an abundance of skilful midfielders banging on the England door – Hoddle, Brooking and McDermott, to name a few.


His time at Liverpool ended in 1981 when he joined Brighton, then in the First Division. Case’s presence was instrumental in one of the club’s most progressive periods that culminated in them reaching the 1983 FA Cup Final. Once again it was Manchester United who denied him that elusive winners’ medal as the Seagulls crashed 4-0 in a replay. However, reaching Wembley detracted from Brighton’s League form and they were relegated at the end of the season.

‘That was a great time,’ recalls Case of the Cup run. ‘It was nice to know that the success I had enjoyed with Liverpool could still continue somewhere else.’


By 1985, Case was on the road again as he moved along the south coast to Southampton, where he was to remain for six years. He followed that with brief spells with Bournemouth, Halifax and Wrexham.


‘Bournemouth released me because they had severe financial problems and had to let go players out of contract,’ explains Case.

‘After that I had half a season with Halifax before Wrexham boss Brian Flynn came in for me. That was only to help them out until the end of the season.’

Many in Case’s position would have decided the time had come to call it a day. But underlining his determination to continue, Case spent last summer keeping in trim by playing in Perth, Australia.

Not the most likely setting, and Case admits the standard of football left a lot to be desired. ‘When I came back,’ he says, ‘I found that I was off the footballing map in England as the papers had reported that my
mnva to Australia was permanent.’

While looking for a new club, Case was far from idle as he worked as a scout for Wrexham. Yet, at 39, Case struggled to secure long-term employment and admits: ‘A lot of clubs looked at my age and were not prepared to offer me more than a one-season contract.

‘But that has never really bothered me. For the last nine years I’ve been on one-year contracts with all my clubs, and that includes six years at Southampton.

‘I’ve always believed that it’s up to me to prove I’m worth keeping on. If I play to my ability then I have no fears.’

Brady clearly believes Case is still good enough for first-team football and that judgement was proved fight as Brighton’s form picked up immediately after his arrival with a four-game unbeaten run that eased relegation worries.

Playing in a deep central midfield role, Case’s main task is to help the team play as a cohesive unit. He is no longer charging all over the pitch, but more involved in picking up possession and then initiating the flowing football that is Brady’s trademark.

The new style introduced by Brady is already paying dividends with attendances at the Goldstone Ground increasing significantly. Crowds of over 10,000 when they are at the wrong end of the table indicate Brighton’s potential for top-flight football.

‘We’re looking to play football,’ Case says, ‘and that has attracted new support. But results are equally important because at the end of the day fans are always going to judge their club by their League position – it’s a thin line. The main aim for this season is to pull clear of relegation and stabilise our position which will give us something to build upon.’

Brighton’s future, despite crippling financial problems, is now considerably brighter.


Highly-rated Irish Under-21 central defender Paul McCarthy (above) has signed a new contract, as has striker Kurt Nogan.

‘The outlook is rosier. Paul and Kurt have seen the light and that has given everyone here greater confidence with regards to the future,’ says Case.

Such was the popularity of Case that a crowd 15,645 came to see his testimonial match between Brighton and Liverpool in October 1994. He finally retired in November 1995 following a neck injury in a reserve match. Then, two weeks, later, he became the manager of Brighton & Hove Albion, following Liam Brady’s resignation. It certainly was the impossible job, especially for a new boss.

Although it ended unhappily with the sack in 1996, Albion fans’ memories of Case are mainly of the happy kind, as indicated by the showing of his extraordinary FA Cup Semi-Final free-kick of 1983 before each Brighton match at the Amex, for supporters old and new to enjoy. Happy birthday, Jim.

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Highbury to heaven!

In 1984, Match Magazine issued its first ever album featuring ’70 super colour picture cards’ focussing on great goals and goalscorers. On the cover of this 28-page publication was Jimmy Case’s blockbuster past Bob Bolder in the 1983 FA Cup Semi-Final at Highbury:


If you look at the crowd closely enough, you may even see some familiar faces. It’s a cracking image and one that doesn’t appear to be given much of an airing these days.

Talking of aspects of that match with Sheffield Wednesday that seem to be rarely seen, I wonder how many supporters remember the old-style film recording of the game:

Makes a change from the Big Match Revisited footage that is frequently shown on the ITV 4!

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Jimmy Case forgets he’s a Brighton player!


Yesterday, Brighton faced Blackburn Rovers at Ewood Park. Surprisingly, for a low-scoring Seagulls side, they played out a 3-3 draw, showing enormous reliance to come back from behind. In 1981/82, the club under Mike Bailey had another side built around a tight defence rather than an all-out attacking game. And yet, in October that season, they also sprang a shock by fighting back to draw 3-3 with mighty Liverpool.

Over the summer of 1981, Mark Lawrenson had left Brighton for Anfield. In the opposite direction came Jimmy Case. The match in the pouring rain at the Goldstone attracted a lot of interest, not least as it was the first encounter for each player against their former sides, with Case starting while Lawrenson sat on the Liverpool bench.

And yet it was almost as if the transfer hadn’t happened for Jimmy Case. Receiving the ball from Tony Grealish as the match gets underway, force of habit meant that he played the ball, under very little pressure, to the feet of Kenny Dalglish!

You can watch it all here in the first half highlights:

Later on, Case even plays a short ball straight to Ray Kennedy. Was he still reminiscing about his Liverpool days? However, he must have remembered he was a Seagull by the time he headed the ball goalwards and tried to claim it was over the line!

In a classic encounter, though, things came good in the end. He found his range in the second half, with a bullet header past Bruce Grobbelaar as the Seagulls sent fans home happy with two late goals:

Liverpool finished League champions that season, while Albion, aiming for a UEFA Cup place for much of the campaign, achieved the unthinkable by winning the return game at Anfield 1-0 in March 1982.


Clubbing… with Jimmy Case

Regretfully, this is not an article about visiting the 1980s nightspots in Brighton with the Scouse midfielder. In the mid-1990s, 90 Minutes magazine ran a page feature every week profiling the ins and outs of football clubs home and abroad. In the 12th October 1996, it was the turn of Brighton & Hove Albion. Rather than be all guns blazing for a night on the razzle, manager Jimmy Case was undoubtedly in sombre mood, while doing he best to stay positive:


“I don’t ask for much, just a pitch for my team to play on.” The words of Brighton manager Jimmy Case, on the job that is almost as unenviable as the Manchester City hot seat.

As it stands, Case and his players will be homeless by the end of the season, but the hero of Liverpool’s Championship and European Cup triumphs of the late ’70s and ’80s, remains cheerful.

“My interest is in the supporters – they’re the lifeblood of this club and they deserve to see a team that entertains them, he says. “But we need help from every quarter at the moment. The local paper seem intent on stirring things up when they should be behind us. The pressure they’re putting on all of us is not needed.

“The situation with the ground seems to be changing every day. One day we’re all systems go with a new stadium. The next, a consortium has pulled out and we’re back to square one. We’ve been kicked right in the teeth more than a few times in the last year.

This is certainly not the ideal time for 42-year-old Case to cut his managerial teeth. He finally hung up his well-worn boots last season, but still has the enthusiasm of a teenager: “I miss playing, but when my team performs well, it makes up for everything we have to put up with off the field.

“I like to see good movement and passion from my players. That was bred into me from my days at Liverpool, and we’ve been playing nicely this year. We also have a great spirit in the dressing room which keeps us all going.

“I spoke to Graeme Souness the other week, and he said that if I could manage at Brighton, I could do it anywhere. But I relish a challenge and will see it through to the end,” says Case. So there’s some hope for Brighton fans, whose loyalty has been thoroughly tested of late.

The Brighton job, with all the problems surrounding the sale of the Goldstone, and the club’s general financial plight, would have been a tough nut to crack even for an experienced manager. It clearly proved beyond Case’s abilities at the time to turn around the fortunes of the side. At first, he enjoyed the support of the fans but this ebbed away, with the defeat to Sudbury Town in the FA Cup 1st Round replay underlining how far the club fallen. However, it was the League position that was all-important. When Brighton stood nine points adrift at the bottom of the Football League in December 1996, Case was sacked.

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Cool Case



Here’s the Daily Mirror’s report of the first ever FA Cup Quarter-Final to take place at the Goldstone Ground, with the Seagulls victorious on 12th March 1983:

By Harry Miller: Brighton 1, Norwich 0

Jimmy Case knows how to keep his cool when the jackpot is only a shuffle and a shot away.

That priceless asset, picked up in a decade of Cup fighting on every front with Liverpool, explains why Brighton are heading towards Wembley and Norwich are among the also-rans.

In Norwich this morning they are probably still muttering and moaning about the legacy of Case’s 67th minute winner and whether he should even have been around to score it.

Yesterday, referee Alan Robinson, from Waterlooville, cleared up one point while the Mirror’s Footballer of the Month for February revealed another.

Norwich protested furiously and pointed to a linesman’s raised flag when Case went past Paul HayIock, shuffled and shot past Chris Woods for the goal that takes Brighton into the FA Cup semi-finals for the first time in their history.

But referee Robinson answered Norwich claims that Haylock had been fouled by saying: “When I spoke to the linesman he said he was fiagging for a foul on Case. I decided to play the advantage.

Norwich manager Ken Brown said: We were done by an old pro who was lucky to be on the field at the time.

“He had already been booked for one foul. His second one, on Mick McGuire, was diabolical.”

Case, who is still only 28, admitted that after the clash with McGuire referee Robinson had-gone to him and said: “You’re going the right way to go towards the tunnel.”

The midfield ace whose goal had knocked out Liverpool in the previous round answered: “I know. I’ll calm down.” To Norwich’s cost, he did.

Case told me: “I’m not a dirty player. I caught McGuire as he was going away from me. There were incidents in the game far worse. Anyway, my record speaks for itself.

“I’ve never been sent off.”

He added: “Really, I don’t remember much about the goal. But looking at it on the video I Certainly don’t think I fouled anyone.”

A tie played at a frantic pace and without much pattern gave a reasonable insight into why these sides are at the bottom end of the First Division.

Brighton manager Jimmy Melia was honest enough to call it “a poor scrappy game,” which it was.

In the end, reality ruled.

Brlghton’s impressive skipper Steve Foster, judged the game’s best player by the match sponsors, admitted: “I would still swap our place in the Cup for a spot halfway up the First Division.”


Shattered dreams


Having been sold to south coast rivals Southampton a year before, Jimmy Case came back to haunt the Seagulls in the FA Cup Quarter-Final at the Goldstone on 8th March 1986.

In the first half, the Saints seemed to be first to every loose ball, and quickly gained a foothold against a rejigged Brighton side. Chris Cattlin dropped Chris Hutching at right-back, shifted Steve Jacobs from midfield to fill his place, and gave Mick Ferguson his first home start since November 1985. Suffice to say, it didn’t work:

Brighton did make more of a fight of it in the second-half but the two goals in the first half had given First Division Southampton an unassailable lead. A pity that Ferguson and Biley couldn’t have stuck those chances away here:

Chris Cattlin’s programme notes the following week reflected on the emphatic defeat:

“I would like to start this afternoon by saying what a great disappointment it was to us all that we failed to do ourselves justice last Saturday, against Southampton. That disappointment is, I know, shared by all our supporters and I appreciate how you feel. We had done so well to get so far in the competition, with battling displays in all the other rounds, but to be honest, the way we played last Saturday did not justify our presence in the Quarter-Finals. We did not play anything like we can on the day.”

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Stick in the mud

On this day in 1982, Mike Bailey led Brighton to an astonishing 1-0 triumph over Liverpool at Anfield. As Peter Welbourn of the Sunday Express wrote:

The defensive discipline which has been the cornerstone of success on Brighton’s travels emerged triumphant again at Anfield. An untidy goal snatched five minutes before half-time was enough to cost Liverpool vital championship points. Alan Hansen could only watch in despair as Andy Ritchie’s shot struck his knee to skid over the line.

There was further luck for the Seagulls late on when mud played its part. Bob Greaves believed that Liverpool:

…were well beaten by a combination of an own goal and a wicked pitch. Take that moment 13 minutes from time when Grealish committed a horrific back pass to give Rush an equaliser on a plate. The Liverpool man hit the ball towards an empty net from some 12 yards, it suddenly stopped in the mud and was cleared.

Here’s some photos from that pivotal moment:


Keeper Digweed looks helpless here but Foster was able to make the clearance:


No wonder Perry Digweed quipped about the mud after the match: “I think I’ll take a bucketful of this stuff and spread it in the Brighton goalmouth.”


Even so, the good fortune would have counted for little if it wasn’t for the gritty determination that kept the Seagulls in the game despite the second half onslaught by Liverpool. The Evening Argus’ John Vinicombe was moved to write:

For a display of character and defensive ability, Albion’s performance could not be faulted. The spectacle, while being almost entirely one way, was full of excitement and passion as Albion gradually came to terms with the demands imposed Liverpool on visiting sides•. But that is not to say that Albion didn’t stretch Liverpool’s defences and there were times when the European champions were forced to sweat it out. Everybody performed beyond the line of duty in this action packed drama and Digweed, brought in on the big occasion, had an excellent game. To come to Anfieid and play like this was the highlight of Albion’s season so far, and reinforced the view that their best games have all been away from the Goldstone.

Both Steve Gatting and Steve Foster had immaculate matches at the back. Despite almost gifting the home side an equaliser with his rush of blood moment, Tony Grealish’s industry and excellent play also caught the eye in helping to take Brighton to 8th in Division One. Following the game, manager Mike Bailey was understandably delighted:

“The result at Liverpool was one of the most satisfying it is possible for a manager to get. Although we were all very happy after the game and it was a good journey home, I don’t think the players realised quite what they had achieved. Not many teams go to Anfield and come away as winers, and I certainly never did it as a player. It just shows how far this club has come in the last few years. Five years it would have been unthinkable for Brighton to have gone to Anfield for a League game and come away as winners.

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Panini Football 82 – a reshaped Brighton


The wind of change blew in 1981/82, and not just for Brighton & Hove Albion. Panini introduced new stickers with a tweaked layout. While the head and shoulder shots remained, the photos now sported rather spatially uneconomical oval frames instead of the standard rectangle. Elsewhere, the one year experiment with two stickers for a First Division club squad photo was abandoned, with team groups reverting back to one sticker.

The Brighton squad was also significantly revamped, under new boss Mike Bailey. Right-back Don Shanks was drafted in while, surprisingly, this was the first Panini collection to feature Gary Stevens in the Brighton double-spread:


New midfielders Jimmy Case and Tony Grealish are featured here, while youngster Giles Stille also appear for the first time for the Albion. Filling the void left by Horton and Lawrenson, all three players enhanced the quantity of facial hair found within the Brighton squad. Up front, Robinson, Smith and Ritchie powered on with a clean-cut Albion strike force:


Of the other teams, Steve Gatting still appears on the Arsenal pages even though Brighton signed him quite early on in the season, in September 1981. Panini clearly didn’t get round to updating their stickers. The Welsh rapscallion Mickey Thomas is also on the Everton spread, despite his ill-starred spell at Goodison Park. His time with Brighton in the same 1981/82 season proved just as disastrous. And, surprise surprise, Peter Ward makes no appearance in the Nottingham Forest pages.

Perhaps that’s fitting. As a sticker collection, Football ’82 was a bit like Brighton & Hove Albion that season: solid, no thrills and not very much flair. All that would change the following season when Panini added a healthy dose of innovation back to its flagship football sticker collection.

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