Fatman Slim's Archives Page

Final Totals
Run In
Start to RunIn
Mid Season
Halfway to three quarters
Start to Halfway
End of Start to Halfway

Final Totals

SesnLgPlWnDrLsPt %W%D%LPosManager
10-11 1 46 28 11 7 95   61 24 15 1 Poyet
09-10 1 46 15 14 17 59   32 30 37 13 Poyet
08-09 1 46 13 13 20 52   28 28 43 16 Slade
07-08 1 46 19 12 15 69   41 26 33 7 Wilkins
06-07 1 46 14 11 21 53   30 24 46 18 Wilkins
GP could see some people on the W'dean pitch. They thought it was all over... it was in '10/11.
Poyet worked for a mid table finish in '09/10 and got it too.
Slade took over from Adams in '08/9 when we appeared down but he kept us up and walked on water to boot.
Wilkins finished 7 pts off lg1 p-o places in '07/8. Much better than a big disappointment for '06/7 when getting a 'must do better' report but still lost his job - oh dear!!
McGhee had euphoria in '04/5 when surviving in the Champ's by a point, in a very close relegation scrap. A year later his number was up well before game 46 of '05/6. Two terms before he was happily on his way to er, Cardiff in May for '03/4 lg1 p-o final.
Coppell had seen his skills as a manager validated in a desperate attempt to defy very long survival odds. Perhaps an unlucky year, '02/3 in the Champ's.
Taylor took; the lg1 title, Brighton up to elite and resignation to boot, with a big CV plus in '01/2.
Adams had done an incredible act for a once rock bottom club, when achieving promotion in '00/1 after two years . He actually wasn't far off lg2 play-offs in Withdean's first season of '99/00.

Run In Back to Top

SesnLgPlWnDrLsPt %W%D%LPosManager
10-11 1 11 6 3 2 21   55 27 18 1 Poyet
09-10 1 11 6 3 2 21   54 27 18 13 Poyet
08-09 1 11 5 2 4 17   45 18 36 16 Slade
07-08 1 11 5 2 4 17   45 18 36 7 Wilkins
06-07 1 11 1 5 5 8   9 45 45 18 Wilkins
01-0211173124--6427 91Taylor
Gus was after auto-promo in '11 for sure and got it by winning the title early doors!
Poyet wanted '10 to be top half by the end really.
Slade pulled off the great escape in '09 and became a hero in his own run-in.
Wilkins was just short of lg1 p-o figs in '08 but had a dire run-in for '07 that looked negative from any angle.
McGhee couldn't motivate a defeated team of '06 Championship. His run-in was a nightmare in '05 with just one win. Nearly 2 pt/gm had got B'ton to knockout stages in a successful lg1 campaign of '04.
Coppell went for it but Champ's points return needed to be bigger. A positive sequence broke down in '03.
Taylor went on winning, if not drawing, to get lg1 glory. All but unbeaten for '02.
Adams was a model of consistency in '01 and did the biz as usual. In his first lg2 season for '00, a vision of the future revealed what an unbeaten run could do.

Start to Run In Back to Top

SesnLgPlWnDrLsPt %W%D%LPosManager
10-11 1 35 22 8 5 74   63 23 14 1 Poyet
09-10 1 35 9 11 15 38   26 31 43 18 Poyet
08-09 1 35 8 11 16 35   23 31 46 22 Adams
07-08 1 35 14 10 11 52   40 28 31 11 Wilkins
06-07 1 35 13 6 16 45   37 17 46 12 Wilkins
Gus wanted to kick on during '10/11.
Poyet was hoping '09/10 was a survival year afterall.
Adams lost the backing of Knight in '08/9 and left before the run-in. Slade took over.
Wilkins overall inconsistencies were dragging good work down. Lg1 play-offs looked but a dream in '07/8 and '06/7.
McGhee knew he'd a massive job on in '05/6 Champ's, while 12 months prior he was cruising '04/5. A year previous again '03/4 he's lg1 top 5 and won nearly half of fixtures.
Coppell kept us on a '02/3 Champ's tightrope but it was always in the balance.
Taylor posted good '01/2 Q figs so far, as lg1 WDL ratio was 3:2:1. A class act.
Adams notched up a high proportion of lg2 victories in '00/1. He'd only levelled out by three quarters gone in '99/00.

Mid Season Back to Top

SesnLgPlWnDrLsPt %W%D%LPosManager
10-11 1 23 15 4 4 49   65 17 17 1 Poyet
09-10 1 23 6 7 10 25   26 30 43 18 Poyet
08-09 1 23 6 4 13 22   26 17 56 22 Adams
07-08 1 23 9 8 6 35   39 35 26 11 Wilkins
06-07 1 23 9 4 10 31   39 17 43 12 Wilkins
GP knew it was now or never during '10/11.
Poyet was now in unknown territory - new manager of a decade-long sleeping giant in '09/10.
Slade arrived to pick up the pieces of Adams failure in '08/9.
Wilkins '07/8 lg1 total was only marginally better than '06/7.
McGhee was really up against it in '05/6. In '04/5 it was an acceptable Champ's tally. His lg1 effort of '03/4 kept things ticking over.
Coppell was trying to beat Champ's survival odds in '02/3 but a very hard task.
Taylor went for broke during '01/2, recording fab stats and loadsa lg1 pts.
Adams was on a roll in '00/1 netting over 2 pt/gm. A first season '99/00 was merely just a point per lg2 game at this stage.

Halfway to three quarters Back to Top

SesnLgPlWnDrLsPt %W%D%LPosManager
10-11 1 12 9 1 2 28   75 8 16 1 Poyet
09-10 1 12 4 5 3 17   33 42 25 18 Poyet
08-09 1 12 3 3 6 12   25 25 50 22 Adams
07-08 1 12 5 4 3 19   42 33 25 11 Wilkins
06-07 1 12 4 2 6 14   33 16 50 12 Wilkins
GP went for broke from early doors in '10/11.
Gus wanted the job for '09/10 and any year is a long time in footy.
Adams went in '08/9 when failing even to be mediocre. Slade arrived to pump it up.
Wilkins was having an up and down time to try and rise above lg1 mediocrity for both '07/8 and '06/7.
McGhee picked up the Champ's pace in '04/5 but it was a winter of discontent in '05/6. His lg1 effort of '03/4 kept p-o hopes alive.
Coppell continued good Champ's work in '02/3 but losses mounted. He was close to cut off.
Taylor pushed on during '01/2, recording useful lg1 win stats. No probs there.
Adams done good in '00/1 piling on lg2 points. His first season '99/00 went a bit flat to boot.

Start to Halfway Back to Top

SesnLgPlWnDrLsPt %W%D%LPosManager
10-11 1 23 13 7 3 46   56 30 13 1 Poyet
09-10 1 23 5 6 12 21   21 26 53 21 Poyet
08-09 1 23 5 8 10 23   22 35 43 19 Adams
07-08 1 23 9 6 8 33   39 26 35 10 Wilkins
06-07 1 23 9 4 10 31   39 17 43 12 Wilkins
Poyet had his target by end of '10 and was spot on too.
Gus knew what he had to do before end of '09 - top twenty!!
Adams had to start again as it went tits up in '08.
Wilkins knew to work some lg1 magic after '07. He was also on track to improve on '06 from lg1 mid-table but needed less defeats.
McGhee in his two Champ's years '05 & '04 really struggled. He got Albion to 4th in lg1, after a wobble to halfway back in '03.
Coppell knew he had to keep future defeats to a low % stat for Champ's survival after '02.
Taylor appeared to have all the lg1 answers by Xmas '01. Time would tell.
Adams got his '00 table top act together and lg2 results were very positive. A season before '99, he was looking for a new millennium plan.

End of Start to Halfway Back to Top

SesnLgPlWnDrLsPt %W%D%LPosManager
10-11 1 11 6 3 2 21   54 27 18 1 Poyet
09-10 1 11 2 2 7 8   18 18 63 21 Poyet
08-09 1 11 3 1 7 10   27 9 63 19 Adams
07-08 1 11 4 4 3 16   36 36 27 10 Wilkins
06-07 1 11 5 2 4 17   45 18 36 12 Wilkins
Poyet needed to maintain momentum for '10 up to New Year.
Slade got sacked coz we needed to be above the d-z by halfway in '09. Gustavo Poyet came in.
Adams lost the plot in '08, falling down the table.
Wilkins was again getting stuck outside lg1 p-o places in '07. He'd steadied the ship in '06 and held a lg1 mid-berth position.
McGhee found '05 & '04 Championship standards a bit taxing. In his lg1 year '03 he did ok though.
Coppell had to work miracles in '02 but was only human. He needed to find a Champ's formula.
Taylor made a seamless change-over in '01 and had super lg1 figs. Onward & seemingly upwards.
Adams bettered his start in the lg2 promo year from '00 but had found season1 of '99 frustrating, mainly through inconsistency.

Start Back to Top

SesnLgPlWnDrLsPt %W%D%LPosManager
10-11 1 12 7 4 1 25   58 33 8 1 Poyet
09-10 1 12 3 4 5 13   25 33 42 17 Slade
08-09 1 12 2 7 3 13   17 58 25 17 Adams
07-08 1 12 5 2 5 17   41 17 41 11 Wilkins
06-07 1 12 4 2 6 14   33 17 50 18 McGhee
Poyet got to make '10 a very fast start in our last year at Withdean.
Slade was expected to do the do in '09 but it started really badly.
Adams returned in '08 and k-o'd rev2 but results were poor.
Wilkins was trying to put a p-o squad together for '07 and sometimes we were, other times we weren't. Mostly we were average lg1.
In '06 McGhee (W2 D1 L3) lost the plot and was sacked. Wilkins took on the lg1 job to aim for play-offs. His mantra was for youth.
McGhee had two seasons in the Championship where starts were; initially ok '04, then much less than average '05.
Coppell kicked off in '03 League 1 in fine style and took us to the top. On course for a promotion challenge of sorts.
Hinshelwood had a tough job on but no experience to help when starting a Championship campaign in '02.
Adams got reasonable results from his new lg2 team after a Brighton homecoming '99. He then took a better side to barnstorming starts in consecutive seasons in lg2 of '00 & lg1 '01.

Poyet Back to Top

SesnLgPlWnDr LsPt %W%D %LPos 
10-1111274 125--5833 81
Target+341987 65--5623 212 
Actual+342176 70--6220 181 
Req'd4626128 90--5726 172 
Total4628117 95--6124 151 
Gus had played down talk of automatic promotion, a top-six finish and big club ambition, while Albion were still at Withdean for '10/11. But early results were good, so we were actually looking for an auto-pomo spot. In the event, GP exceeded all expectations for BHA to become champions early doors. He got best stats too for '99-'11 over all.


Poyet Back to Top

SesnLgPlWnDr LsPt %W%D %LPos 
09-1011234 513--2533 4217(Slade)
Target+3414119 53--4232 2610 
Actual+34121012 46--3529 3513 
Req'd46171514 66--3733 3010 
Total46151417 59--3230 3713 
Slade done the great escape, added to the squad in pre-season but faltered in opening rounds of '9/10. Then Gus Poyet came in and did the big turn around. It took a while to get results, so he too changed playing personnel. He eventually got well above a point a game to stay clear of lower table fodder. A fair run-in took us into mid table.


Slade Back to Top

SesnLgPlWnDr LsPt %W%D %LPos 
08-0911227 313--1758 2517(Adams)
Target+3415910 54--4426 2910 
Actual+3411617 39--3218 5016 
Req'd46171613 67--3735 2810 
Total46131320 52--2828 4316 
Adams came back for '08/9 but needed 20pts to virtually fix a path to a p-o spot. In view of disappointing results, could he match his year1 figures this season? Er, he left after halfway thru with the club in 21st.
So Slade arrived to try and salvage something from a disaster campaign. He kept us in League1 and it could have been worse.


Wilkins Back to Top

SesnLgPlWnDr LsPt %W%D %LPos 
07-0811252 517--4117 4111
Target+341789 59--5024 266 
Actual+34141010 52--4129 297 
Req'd46221014 76--4822 306 
Total46191215 69--4126 337 
Twenty points would have been a nice '07/8 starting point but inconsistencies held a young squad back. Brighton were probably a tad better than those stats so lg1 p-o's were aimed for again. Wilkins got to mount a late challenge but had too much ground to make up for grabbing a top-six spot. He was relieved of duties to add insult to other woes.


Wilkins Back to Top

SesnLgPlWnDr LsPt %W%D %LPos 
06-0711242 614--3317 5018(McGhee)
Target+3418610 60--5317 306 
Actual+3410915 39--2926 4518 
Req'd4622816 74--4817 356 
Total46141121 53--3024 4618 
Wilkins shared the lg1 sequence of 12 starting fixtures with McGhee in '06/7. Both recorded W 2 D 1 L 3 which formed the basis for estimating a 'target' over 34 games to end of season. This projection was only good enough to give a mid table finish. However, hope springs eternal so play-offs were the aim. In the event, mediocrity would have been nice!


McGhee Back to Top

SesnLgPlWnDr LsPt %W%D %LPos 
05-06C1217 410--858 3321
Target+34101014 40--2929 4121 
Actual+3461018 28--1729 5324 
Req'd46111718 50--2437 3921 
Total4671722 38--1537 4824 
McGhee didn't do too well at the start of '05/6 and was left with a Championship sized mountain to climb. A target of 40 points was attainable in practice, compared to '02/3 for instance. By run-in he'd only added 19 and had to up it considerably to stay up. Long before the end proper we were down and out. Many Brighton fans didn't think he'd put up enough of a fight to survive as boss.


McGhee Back to Top

SesnLgPlWnDr LsPt %W%D %LPos 
04-05C1243 515--3325 4215
Target+3481115 35--2432 4421 
Actual+349916 36--2626 4720 
Req'd46121420 50--2630 4421 
Total46131221 51--2826 4620 
In '04/5 McGhee was having a crack at being a Champ's boss and just about held it together. He needed 35 pts from 34 games which is really only relegation form. At 3/4 stage (page 1) he only needed 6 points for apparent safety. It began to fall apart and went to the last day as in '02/3 - although we had a slight edge on drop zone rivals this time. A close run event celebrated as fantastic by B'ton fans.


McGhee Back to Top

SesnLgPlWnDr LsPt %W%D %LPos 
03-0411273 224--5825 171(Coppell)
Target+3414911 51--4127 324 
Actual+3415811 53--4424 324 
Req'd46211213 75--4626 284 
Total46221113 77--4824 284 
Back in div2 (lg1) of '03/4 was still incentive enough for Coppell to kick start a bid for a quick return to elite. He had us flying by game 12 and auto promo candidates.
McGhee got lucky or perhaps really did the biz after this. Play-offs were realistic and a 75 point target overall was surpassed to take 4th place. Mounting losses were cause for concern but he kept them within limits to below 1/3 of WDL totals.


Coppell Back to Top

SesnLgPlWnDr LsPt %W%D %LPos 
02-03C1211 104--88 8424(Hinshelwood)
Target+34111310 46--3238 3021 
Actual+34101113 41--3032 3823 
Req'd46121420 50--2630 4421 
Total46111223 45--2426 5023 
B'ton had got to div1 (Champ's) in '02/3 but were ill prepared. Hinshelwood drew a short straw and both Board and fans suddenly realised what a decent standard it was. You are only as good as the last result and basically, we needed a miracle to survive.
Coppell came in for 3/4 of that season with an unenviable target of 50 pts or 21st place to try and achieve. His record stands as a valiant attempt to change us into a mid-table side, by overcoming a huge deficit to start with. Real hard luck that we went down on the final day.


Taylor Back to Top

SesnLgPlWnDr LsPt %W%D %LPos 
01-0211264 222--5033 173(Adams)
Target+3418106 64--5329 182 
Actual+3419114 68--5632 121 
Req'd4624148 86--5230 182 
Total4625156 90--5433 131 
Adams kicked off '01/2 on course to assault div2 (lg1) in strident manner, having raised the club's and his profile considerably. It was very good for each and a bond still endures.
Taylor came in, maintained impetus and aimed for better if possible. His record of exactly 2 points per game made him and BHA a winner. Albion stormed the division and collected a second consecutive title. B'ton actually took 24 from 30 points during the run-in - no mean feat. Taylor's muted celebrations didn't reflect that of an incredibly jubilant Sussex by the sea.


Adams Back to Top

SesnLgPlWnDr LsPt %W%D %LPos 
00-0121272 323--5817 253
Target+341789 59--5024 263 
Actual+342167 69--6218 201 
Req'd46241012 82--5222 263 
Total4628810 92--6117 221 
Adams mounted a challenge on promotion places in '00/01 from the word go with super starting figures. Being div3 (lg2) his target was 3rd spot, which meant maintaining a 50% win ratio. Over the next 34 fixtures B'ton had a 3:1 W/L differential and cruised to automatic promotion, then the title and some nice silverware by late in the run-in. Job done and how!


Adams Back to Top

SesnLgPlWnDr LsPt %W%D %LPos 
99-0021253 418--4225 3311
Target+341699 57--4726 267 
Actual+3412139 49--3538 2611 
Req'd46211213 75--4626 287 
Total46171613 67--3735 2811 
Who could ever forget that incredible 6-0 first match win at Withdean to originally put us top of the div3 table for '99/00? Indeed, in the inaugural home friendly game versus Nott'm Forest (24/7/99) it seemed as if we really were playing big-boys and something for Albion to aspire to. Events since took a turn for the better, after an initial season establishing our Brighton based team fit to climb above previous depths of near relegation from FL status. Adams realised he might with luck make play-offs but his target proved just too distant to get points required. More draws than wins scuppered reaching a higher place than mid-table.


Click on the character from the list

Chris Hughton

Prem Targets
PL & PL2 Signings & loans out

Sami Hyypia
CHAMPIONSHIP Ins & Outs '14 - '17
Championship Squads 14-17

Oscar Garcia
Gus Poyet
CHAMPIONSHIP Ins & Outs '11 - '14
Championship Squads 11-14

CUP Competitions

Withdean Managers
Withdean Coaches
Gus Poyet
Russell Slade
Dean Wilkins
Mark McGhee
Steve Coppell
Martin Hinshelwood
Peter Taylor
Micky Adams
W'dean Ins & Outs
W'dean Goalkeepers '99-'11
W'dean 2nd & 3rd Revolutions '08-'11
W'dean interim period '06-'08
W'dean Championship Years '02-'06
W'dean Old Squad '99-'02
W'dean - FA Cup
W'dean - League Cup
W'dean - FL Trophy
Dick Knight
Martin Perry
Gory Years Managers '93-'99
2 Goldstone Ground Managers
1 Goldstone Ground Player
Sami Hyypia - Bobby Z - Charlie O - Danny C - Guy B


Falmer Years - 2011-19
Aug 2011 - June 2013 ~ Gus Poyet ... ... . Championship
Jun 2013 - May 2014 ~ Oscar Garcia ... ... ... " " "
Jun 2014 - Dec 2014 ~ Sami Hyypia .... ... ... " " "
Jan 2015 - May 2019 ~ Chris Hughton ... Championship & Premier League
May 2019 - (Jun 2023) ~ Graham Potter ... Premier League

The American Express Community Stadium (Amex) officially opened in July 2011, with a friendly against Premiership big-boys Tottenham Hotspur in front of a crowd of 15k. Previously 6k watched the first ever ramp-up event, when Charlie Oatway's BHA reserve side played non-league Eastbourne Boro in the Sussex Senior Cup Final for previous season '10/11.
GUS POYET took Brighton to the Amex as League1 title holders at Withdean and next we were playing in a brand new 20k+ stad in the Championship. Behind the scenes, Brighton fans knew Chairman Tony Bloom was the man responsible for financing building of the Amex, which was only plans on paper at time of the Global Banking crisis and recession of 2007-8. He effectively provided funds to erect CEO Martin Perry's pet project of lifes work and also enable Gus Poyet to try to take the club from the gutter to the stars. Talk about state of the art!
BHA applied to increase stadium capacity for the second year in 2013 from 22k up to 30k. There were also plans to build a training complex at Lancing by 2014. Gus Poyet also did the biz on-field and BHA reached Champ's p-os for '12/13.
OSCAR GARCIA became head coach for our third term at Falmer for '13/14. But he resigned immediately after defeat in p-os once more.
SAMI HYYPIA was appointed in summer of 2014 as the new, young and dynamic head coach by ever-ambitious chairman Tony Bloom. But he also resigned, following a poor run of results prior to Xmas fixtures.
CHRIS HUGHTON stepped in at New Year 2015 with a brief to lift the team clear of Champ's relegation places and reinvigorate the club to, 'one aim, one ambition.' This appeared to be a huge task by end of the season. But in 2016 Albion just missed a top-two place, although were knocked out in p-o s-f once again. He then went one better in 2017 by steering Seagulls to automatic promotion to the Premier League. He kept BHA there after their first & second elite season completions in 2018 & 2019. But parted company with Albion immediately afterwards.
GRAHAM POTTER very soon got headhunted by Tony Bloom, following finish of the second Premier League campaign in May 2019.

Y L Sea'n . Pt . Po . Manager - status
1 C 11/12 . 66 . 10 . Poyet - mid div Championship
2 C 12/13 . 75 . 04 . Poyet - p-o s-f in " " "
3 C 13/14 . 72 . 06 . Garcia - p-o s-f in " " "
4 C 14/15 . 47 . 20 . Hyypia/Hughton - 5th from bottom in C
5 C 15/16 . 89 . 03 . Hughton - p-o s-f Championship
6 C 16/17 . 93 . 02 . Hughton - runners-up " " "
7 P 17/18 . 40 . 15 . Hughton - 6th from bottom Premier League. FA Cup QF
8 P 18/19 . 36 . 17 . Hughton - 4th from bottom Premier League. FA Cup SF
9 P 19/20 . ?? . ?? . Potter

Years 1&2, Gus Poyet - Championship.
The charismatic and somewhat enigmatic Uruguayan coach certainly raised the team's profile, when competing in tough second level fixtures which coincided with BHA rehoused at the Amex. Crowds flocked there again when capacity increased during the second term, with almost constant sell-outs.
The football was something Brighton fans old and new hadn't seen live before. It therefore came as a shock when at end of '12/13 Poyet was told to stay away and later sacked in the close season.
Year 3, Oscar Garcia - Championship.
As a former Barcelona midfielder, Garcia was considered more than suitable to continue the Spanish style of play that Albion adopted during opening years in the Championship. He took his brand of quiet determination onto the training ground and led BHA to another successful season. But quit to pursue greater ambitions.
Year 4, Sami Hyypia & Chris Hughton - Championship.
The tall blond Finn was another young coach with impecible credentials as a quality player, like Garcia & Poyet, at the highest club level, plus international experience. He also quit, after seeing BHA slide into relegation places before end of 2014. He was replaced by a very experienced manager with a sound coaching record, knowledge of the division and how to get out of it - upwards!
Years 5 - 8, Chris Hughton - Championship & Premier League.
In 15/16 Hughton came very close to gaining auto-promo in his first full season. Twelve months later he achieved that target, taking BHA into the Premier League for 17/18 as Championship runners-up. CH then ensured BHA survived both their initial and second PL terms. At end of the 18/19 season Chris Hughton was released by the club.
Year 9, Graham Potter - Premier League
Tony Bloom appointed his latest younger coach after eye-catching progress rebuilding at Swansea in the Championship.

Falmer Years - 2019-(2023) Premier League
Taking flight with Seagulls after nesting Swans
Not many fans were aware of the young manager over in Wales at Swansea but Tony Bloom persuaded him to join Albion and coach at the highest level. Potter's cv included managing in Sweden where he had been very successful with small outfit Ostersund - even taking them to the Europa League. GP's playing days in the EFL were as a full back, for numerous clubs, including Southampton, Stoke and West Brom. He also has a degree in social sciences and a masters in leadership skills. The 44yo came to Albion having worked with a young squad in Wales and proved capable of developing talent from the academy. BHA paid Swansea around 3m compensation to acquire services of their new boss/head coach, who brought his respected coaching team on board too. Potter signed a 4yr contract.

Chris Hughton Back to Top
Falmer Years - 2015-19 Championship & Premier League.
To Seagulls from Magpies, via Canaries.
On New Year's Eve, after a hectic Xmas period for 2014, Tony Bloom appointed the very experienced coach and proven manager on a 3.5yr contract. On a fans published vote, Chris Hughton was not first choice but there was no doubting his official credentials to step into the Albion hot-seat and become the fourth Amex boss in the last couple of years.
Hughton played for Spurs & West Ham at fullback and had over 50 Rep of Ireland caps. He hung boots up over twenty years ago but the then 56yo had established as a top flite coach for over 15yrs or so prior to getting the gaffers job at Newcastle in 2009.
In 2011 while at Birmingham, he guided Blues into Championship play-offs. Then Hughton went again into the Prem with Norwich before leaving the club as they faced relegation in 2014. At level two he has seen it, done it and worn the t-shirt.
In the event, the mission was accomplished - when Albion escaped all relegation issues but failed to reach a nominal 50 points safety target. The following season Chris Hughton took BHA to very brink of automatic promotion - getting the LMA award to boot, as the club contested play-offs. He was then awarded a 4yr contract by Tony Bloom.
At end of the 16/17 season Hughton took BHA into the Premiership automatically from clear 2nd place. After a seafront parade he & Tony Bloom were bestowed with freedom of the city. Chris Hughton also won the LMA Championship manager of the year for the second season running with BHA, having previously gained that peer title when with Newcastle. CH duly delivered again, steering Albion to PL survival with 2 games to spare. He was deservedly awarded a new deal until end of 20/21 season. At beginning of 2019 Chris Hughton entered his 5th year as manager, a stat which was unusual to say the least in any PL club, or indeed EFL division. After the second Prem campaign CH again managed to keep BHA in the divison for another term. However he paid the ultimate price following a disappointing run of results from Jan 2019. Brighton fans did not realise he would be gone the day following end of season laps at the Amex but that heartfelt thank you was in fact farewell.

 Back to Top

***PREM STATS*** Back to Top
Falmer Years - 2018-19 Premier League
19/20 - P0 W0 D0 L0 . F0 A0 GD0 . Pt0 Po0 = 0.00pt/gm
FA Cup - EFL Cup -

18/19 - P38 . W9 D9 L20 . F35 A60 GD-25 . Pt36 Po17 = 0.94pt/gm - stayed up.
FA Cup - semi finals. EFL Cup - 2nd round.

17/18 - P38 . W9 D13 L16 . F34 A54 GD-20 . Pt40 Po15 = 1.05pt/gm - 40pt target reached & survival!
FA Cup - quarter finals. EFL Cup - 3rd rnd.

19/20 - SEQUENCES, wdl runs, Points per Game index & Position.
*** Runs *** xxx - w0, d0, l0 first half
second half xxx - w0, d0, l0
Wins 0 = 0.0%, Draws 0 = 0.0%, Loss 0 = 0.0%
Index - 0.0pt/gm - target survival index - 1.00pt/gm
Po - xx ... Ave Po = xxth

Monthly RESULTS; reverse chronological season.
Mth - Home . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Away
Aug - West Ham, Southampton . . . . . . . . . . . . . Watford, Man City

Win by - 1 = 0, 2 = 0, 3 = 0, 4 = 0, 5 = 0, all = 0
Lose by - 1 = 0, 2 = 0, 3 = 0, 4 = 0, 5 = 1, all = 0
Draw by - 0 = 0, 1 = 0, 2 = 0, 3 = 0, 4 = 0, all = 0

Rslt 0-0 1-0 1-1 2-0 2-1 2-2 3-0 3-1 3-2 4-0 4-1 4-2 5-0 5-1
Win ---- --0- ---- --0- --0- ---- --0- --0- --0- --0- -0- -0- -0- --0- = 0, F0 A0 GD0, score first = 0/0 - 0.0%
Lose --- --0- ---- --0- --0- ---- --0- --0- --0- --0- -0- -0- -0- --0- = 0, F0 A0 GD0, concede first = 0/0 - 0.0%
Draw -0- --- --0- ---- ---- --0- ----- ---- ----- ----- ---- ---- ---- ---- = 0, F0 A0, equalise last = 0/0 - 0.0%

GOALS Conceded; 1-15min = 0, 16-30m = 0, 31-45m = 0, 46-60m = 0, 61-75m = 0, 76-90+m = 0, total = 0
GOALS *Scored*; 1-15min = 0, 16-30m= 0, 31-45m = 0, 46-60m = 0, 61-75m = 0, 76-90+m = 0, total = 0

Alphabetical RESULTS; Home & Away pairings.
Arsenal (A) (H) = 0pt, Aston Villa (H) (A) = 0pt, Bournemouth (A) (H) = 0pt, Burnley (H) (A) = 0pt, Chelsea (A) (H) = 0pt, Crystal Palace (H) (A) = 0pt,
Everton (H) (A) = 0pt, Leicester (A) (H) = 0pt, Liverpool (H) (A) = 0pt, Man City (H) (A) = 0pt, Man Utd (H) (A) = 0pt,
Newcastle (H) (A) = 0pt, Norwich (H) (A) = 0pt, Sheff Utd (H) (A) = 0pt, Southampton (H) (A) = 0pt, Tottenham (A) (H) = 0pt,
Watford (A) (H) = 0pt, West Ham (A) (H) = 0pt, Wolves (A) (H) = 0pt.
P0 . W0 D0 L0 . F0 A0 GD0, clean shts 0, fts 0. Top six = 0pt, mid eight = 0pt, bottom six = 0pt, total = 0pt

2020 FA CUP; 3rd rnd -
2019 EFL CUP; 2nd rnd -

Prem Targets Back to Top
***SEASONS COUNTER*** compare ongoing Actual numbers after Start, to forecast Required totals.
19-20 -- Pl - Wn Dr Ls - Pt -- W% D% L% - Po - Fixtures
Start .... 10 -
Target +28 -
Actual +28 -
Req'd .. 38 -
Total ... 38 -

18-19 -- Pl - Wn Dr Ls - Pt -- W% D% L% - Po - Fixtures
Start .... 10 - 04 02 04 - 14 -- 40 - 20 - 40 - 11 - - 1-10
Target +28 - 08 07 13 - 31 -- 28 - 25 - 46 - 12 - - 11-38
Actual +28 - 05 07 16 - 22 -- 18 - 25 - 57 - 17 - - 11-38
Req'd .. 38 - 12 09 17 - 45 -- 31 - 24 - 45 - 12 - - 1-38
Total ... 38 - 09 09 20 - 36 -- 24 - 24 - 52 - 17 - - 1-38

17-18 -- Pl - Wn Dr Ls - Pt -- W% D% L% - Po - Fixtures
Start .... 10 - 03 03 04 - 12 -- 30 - 30 - 40 - 12 - - 1-10
Target +28 - 07 05 16 - 26 -- 25 - 18 - 57 - 17 - - 11-38
Actual +28 - 06 10 12 - 28 -- 21 - 36 - 43 - 15 - - 11-38
Req'd .. 38 - 10 08 20 - 38 -- 26 - 21 - 53 - 17 - - 1-38
Total ... 38 - 09 13 16 - 40 -- 24 - 34 - 42 - 15 - - 1-38

19/20 PL TABLE
Po . Pl . GD . Pt . pt/gm Team
01 .

19/20 Stats -
Quarterly - - - - - - - - - - - - - - Per Quarter % - individual & accumulated %
Pl . W D L . . . F A . GD . Pt Po . pt/gm
38 .
29 .
19 .
10 .

Individual per Quarter stats (Q 1-4 = @ gms 10 - start, 19 - halfway, 29 - threequarters, 38 - final total)
Q1 - H = 0 0 0, A = 0 0 0 . Qtr total 0pt . F0 A0 gd0 . 0 clean-shts and 0fts. 0.00pt/gm. 0 home games run.

18/19 Stats -
Pl . W D L . . . F A . GD . Pt Po . pt/gm
38 . 9 09 20 . 35 60 -25 . 36 17 . 0.94 - - - Q4% - 00 33 67 - 24 24 52 Total
29 . 9 06 14 . 32 42 -10 . 33 15 . 1.13 - - - Q3% - 30 20 50 - 31 20 48 Threequarters
19 . 6 04 09 . 21 27 -06 . 22 13 . 1.15 - - - Q2% - 22 22 55 - 31 21 47 Halfway
10 . 4 02 04 . 11 13 -02 . 14 11 . 1.40 - - - Q1% - 40 20 40 Start

Q4 - H = 0 1 4, A = 0 2 2 . Qtr total 03pt, F03 A18 gd-15 . 1 clean-shts and 6fts. 0.33pt/gm. 1 home games run
Q3 - H = 2 1 2, A = 1 1 3 . Qtr total 11pt, F11 A15 gd-4 . 3 clean-shts and 2fts. 1.10pt/gm. 1 home games run
Q2 - H = 1 2 1, A = 1 0 4 . Qtr total 08pt, F10 A14 gd-4 . 0 clean-shts and 2fts. 0.88pt/gm. 2 home games run
Q1 - H = 3 1 1, A = 1 1 3 . Qtr total 14pt, F11 A13 gd-2 . 3 clean-shts and 3fts. 1.40pt/gm. 2 home games run.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Q+ - H = 6 5 8, A = 3 4 12 . Full total 36pt, F35 A60 gd-25 . 7 clean-shts and 13fts. 0.94pt/gm. 3 home games best run.

17/18 Stats -
Pl . W D L . . . F A . GD . Pt Po . pt/gm
38 . 9 13 16 . 34 54 -20 . 40 15 . 1.05 - - - Q4% - 11 33 55 - 24 34 42 Final Total
29 . 8 10 11 . 28 38 -10 . 34 10 . 1.17 - - - Q3% - 30 40 30 - 27 34 38 Threequarters
19 . 5 06 08 . 15 23 -08 . 21 12 . 1.10 - - - Q2% - 22 33 44 - 26 31 42 Halfway
10 . 3 03 04 . 10 11 -01 . 12 12 . 1.20 - - - Q1% - 30 30 40 Start

Q4 - H = 1 2 1, A = 0 1 4 . Qtr total 06pt, F06 A16 gd-10 . 2 clean-shts and 4 fts. 0.66pt/gm. 3 home games unbeaten run.
Q3 - H = 3 1 1, A = 0 3 2 . Qtr total 13pt, F13 A15 gd-2 . 1 clean-shts and 4 fts. 1.30pt/gm. 3 home games unbeaten run.
Q2 - H = 1 3 1, A = 1 0 3 . Qtr total 09pt, F05 A12 gd-7. 4 clean-shts and 5 fts. 1.00pt/gm. 2 home games unbeaten run
Q1 - H = 2 2 1, A = 1 1 3 . Qtr total 12pt, F10 A11 gd-1. 3 clean-shts and 4 fts. 1.20pt/gm. 4 home games unbeaten run.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Q+ - H = 7 8 4, A = 2 5 12 . Full total 40Pt, F34 A54 gd-20 . 10 clean-shts and 17 fts. 1.05pt/gm. 6 home games longest run in Q1-Q2.

***PREM SQUADS***  Back to Top
Falmer Years - 2017-20 (years 7-9) Premier League & PL2 (U23) group.
Year9 Squads, 2019 - 2020 - third PL season. Plus PL2 div1
***PL squad*** 1 Ryan (gk), 2, 3 Bong, 4 Duffy, 5 Dunk, 6 Stephens, 7 Kayal, 8 Bissouma, 9 Locadia, 10 Andone, 11 Knockaert, 12, 13 Gross, 14 Balogun, 15, 16 Jahanbakhsh, 17 Murray, 18, 19 Izquierdo, 20 March, 21, 22 Montoya, 23 Steele (gk), 24 Propper, 25, 26, 27 Button (gk), 28, 29, 30 Bernardo, 31, 32, 33 Burn, 41 Sanders, 42 Gyokeres, 49 Molumby.
U23 squad; Sanchez (gk), McGill (gk), Cochrane, A Davies, J Davies, Longman, Cox, Roberts, O'Hora, Ahannach, Spong, Alzate, Ostigard, Gwargis, Radulovic,
PL Signings; * for 25 man squad (8 homegrown players). Matt Clarke (c-d Portsmouth), Leandro Trossard (winger Genk)
U23 signings;
Out on loan; Walton (gk), Suttner, Schelotto, Hemed, White, Tau, Tilley, Connolly, Mac Allister,
U23 on loan; Keto (gk), Mlakar, Baluta, Dreyer, Arce,
Left; Bruno (coach), Towell, Collar, Mateju
U23s released; Barclay, Moore, Tomlinson, Kerr, Hall, Ljubicic, Collings.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Year8 Squads, 2018 - 2019 - second PL season. Plus PL2 div1
PL APPS - 1 Ryan (gk) 34, 2 Bruno 14, 3 Bong 19 (3), 4 Duffy 35, 5 Dunk 36, 6 Stephens 29 (1), 7 Kayal 9 (9), 8 Bissouma 13 (11), 9 Locadia 12 (14), 10 Andone 8 (15), 11 Knockaert 18 (12), 12 Keto (gk loaned), 13 Gross 24 (1), 14 Balogun 5 (3), 15, 16 Jahanbakhsh 12 (7), 17 Murray 31 (7), 18, 19 Izquierdo 9 (6), 20 March 30 (5), 21 Schelotto (loaned), 22 Montoya 24 (1), 23 Steele (gk) 0, 24 Propper 30, 25 Hemed (loaned), 26 Tau (loaned), 27 Button (gk) 4, 28 White (loaned), 29 Suttner (loaned), 30 Bernardo 19 (3), 41 Sanders 0, 42 Gyokeres 0, 49 Molumby 0.
CUPS - 1 Ryan 2, 27 Button 4, 23 Steele 1, 58 Collar 1, 3 Bong 1 (1), 35 Barclay 1, 30 Bernardo 5, 4 Duffy 5, 14 Balogun 2, 29 Suttner 1, 2 Bruno 4, 22 Montoya 3 (1), 16 Jahanbakhsh 5, 11 Knockaert 6, 7 Kayal 6, 8 Bissouma 6, 6 Stephens 5, 42 Gyokeres 2 (2), 13 Gross 1 (1), 9 Locadia 5 (3), 24 Propper 2 (3), 44 Connolly 0 (1), 20 March (2), 10 Andone 3 (1), 33 Burn 3, Murray 2 (2), 19 Izquierdo (2).
GOALS - Murray 13, Gross 3, Duffy 5, Knockaert 2, Kayal 1, Dunk 2, Andone 3, Balogun 1, March 1, Locadia 2, Stephens 1, Propper 1 = 35
Cups - Knockaert 2, Bissouma 1, Andone 2, Murray 2, Locadia 2, March 1 = 10
CARDS; red - Stephens, Duffy, Dunk, Knockaert = 4, yellow - Ryan 2, Duffy 4, Dunk 7, Montoya 4, Bernardo 4, Stephens 6, Murray 5, Balogun 2, Propper 2, Knockaert 4, Locadia 1, Bissouma 5, Kayal 4, Jahanbakhsh 2, Bruno 2, Izquierdo 1, Andone 5, March 1, Gross 1 = 59
Cups - Bissouma 3, Stephens 1, Locadia 1, Bruno 1, Bernardo 1, Montoya 1, Dunk 1, Jahanbakhsh 1 = 10
SIGNINGS; winter window - Jan Mlakar (Maribor), Tudor-Cristian Baluta (Constanta), Alexis Mac Allister (Argentinos)
summer window - Martin Montoya* (rb Valencia), Dan Burn* (def Wigan), Alireza Jahanbakhsh* (winger Alkmaar), Yves Bissouma* (mf Lille), David Button* (gk Fulham), Bernardo Silva* (def RB Leipzig), Jason Steele* (gk Sunderland), Leon Balogun* (c-d Mainz), Florin Andone* (striker La Coruna), Percy Tau (striker Sundowns SA).
Out on loan - Tau (Belgium), Towell (Rotherham), Walton (gk Wigan), Hemed (QPR). To Jan 19 - Burn (Wigan), Norwood (Sheff U). From Jan 19 - Suttner (Dussledorf), Schelotto (Verona), Mlakar (Maribor), Baluta (Constanta), Allister (Argentinos)
U23s loaned - Mateju (Spain), Tomlinson (Bognor), to Jan 19 - Radulovic (Spain), Alzate (Swindon), Hall (Notts Co), Sanchez (Forest Green). From Jan 19 - Arce (Spain), Kerr (Derry), White (Peterboro), Barclay (Notts Co), Cox (Northampton), McGill (gk Basinstoke), Tilley (Cork), Dreyer (St Mirren), Ljubicic (Eastbourne), Connolly (Luton), Keto (Waterford).
U23 '18 signings - Joe Tomlinson (def Yeovil), Hugo Keto (gk Arsenal), Billy Arce (striker Independiente), Anders Dreyer (winger Esbjerg), Leo Ostigard (def Molde), Peter Gwargis (m-f Jonkopings).
Left - Norwood, Skalak, Baldock, Krul, Maenpaa, Goldson, Murphy, Huenemeier, Sidwell (youth coach), Rosenior (U23 coach), Ince, Ulloa.
U23s left - Mandroiu, Maguire-Drew. Normann.
U23s released - Hutchinson, Hornby-Forbes, Dallison, Ayunga, Bjordal, Vose, O'Sullivan, Meekums, Kone, Ajiboye.
U23 PL2 div1 - coach Simon Rusk, Squad; Keto (gk loaned), 31 Sanchez (gk), 62 Collings (gk), 61 McGill (gk loaned), Rees (gk U18). Def - Tomlinson (loaned), 28 White (loaned), 47 Cox (loaned), 35 Barclay (loaned), 48 Hall, Roberts (U18), 52 J Davies, 54 Kerr (loaned), 53 O'Hora, 45 Moore, 57 Ostigard, Tanimowo (U18). M-F - Barker, 58 Collar, 55 Mandroiu (left), 49 Molumby, 51 A Davies, 41 Sanders, 66 Normann (left), 64 Cochrane, 39 Ahannach, Dreyer (loaned), Gwargis, Araujo (U18). FWD - Radulovic, 43 Tilley (loaned), 42 Gyokeres, 44 Connolly (loaned), 65 Ljubicic (loaned), Longman (U18), 71 Spong (U18), 73 Cashman (U18), Wilson (U18)
18/19 - P22 W9 D8 L5 F37 A27 GD+10 Pt35 Po3. Sussex Senior Cup - semi-finals.
U18 squad - Rushworth (gk), Zalewski (gk), Clarke-Eden, Tutt, Weaire, Lopata, Packham, Jenks, Leonard, Vukoje, Carre, Tolaj, Cocoracchio.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Year7 Squad, 2017 - 2018 - Premier League survival. Plus PL2 div2 (U23) group.
RETAINED Champ's group; keepers - Niki Maenpaa*, Def - Bruno*, Lewis Dunk*, Shane Duffy*, Uwe Huenemeier*, Connor Goldson*, Liam Rosenior*, Gaetan Bong*, M-F - Dale Stephens*, Beram Kayal*, Steve Sidwell*, FWD - Glenn Murray*, Sam Baldock*, Tomer Hemed*, Solly March*, Anthony Knockaert*, Jiri Skalak*
Out on loan - Chris Walton (gk), Ollie Norwood, Rohan Ince, Richie Towell, Jamie Murphy. U23s - Ben Hall, Ben White, Jordan Maguire-Drew, Tyler Hornby-Forbes, Tom Dallison, Jonah Ayunga.
Left - Ankergren (gk coach), Forren, O'Grady, Adekugbe, Akpom, Tomori, Pocognoli, Stockdale, Manu, Hunt, later - LuaLua, Brown.
SIGNINGS; Close & pre-season - Pascal Gross* (mf - Ingolstadt), Maty Ryan* (gk - Valencia), Markus Suttner* (lb - Ingolstadt), Izzy Brown (mf - Chelsea loan), Davy Propper* (mf - PSV)
U23s - Josh Kerr (def - Celtic), Mathias Normann (mf - Bodo Glimt, loaned out), Ales Mateju (rb - Pizen), Soufyan Ahannach (winger - Almere, loaned out), Steven Alzate (striker - Orient)
August window - Jose Izquierdo* (winger - Brugge), Ezequiel Schelotto* (full-back - Sporting), Tim Krul* (keeper - Newcastle)
January window - Jurgen Locadia* (striker - PSV Eindhoven), Leonardo Ulloa* (Leicester loan), U23s - Viktor Gyokeres (striker - Brommapojkarna), Warren O'Hora (c-d Bohemians), Bojan Radulovic (striker Lleida), Stefan Ljubicic
APPS; 1 Ryan (gk) 38, 2 Bruno 23 (2), 3 Bong 25, 4 Huenemeier 0 (1), 5 Dunk 38, 6 Stephens 36, 7 Kayal 8 (11), 8 Skalak 0, 9 Baldock 0 (2), 10 Hemed 8 (7), 11 Knockaert 27 (6), 12 Maenpaa (gk) 0, 13 Gross 35 (3) PoY, 14 Sidwell 0, 15 Murphy 1 (3) (loaned), 16 Ulloa 2 (8) (on loan), 17 Murray 25 (10), 18 Goldson 2 (1), 19 Izquierdo 23 (8), 20 March 18 (18), 21 Schelotto 15 (6), 22 Duffy 37, 23 Rosenior 1 (2), 24 Propper 35, 25 Locadia 3 (3), 26 Krul (gk) 0, 27 -, 28 -, 29 Suttner 13 (1), 30 LuaLua 0 (left), 31 Walton (gk loaned), 32 -, 33 -, 34 Ince (loaned), 35 -, 36 Towell (loaned), 37 Brown 4 (9) (left), 38 Mateju (U23), 39 Ahannach (loaned), 47 Hutchinson (U23), 49 Molumby (U23), 51 Sanders (U23), 66 Connolly (U23), 70 Tilley (U23)
Cups - Maenpaa 1 (1), Krul 5, Rosenior 3, Bruno 1, Suttner 3, Bong 3, Schelotto 3, Goldson 5, Huenemeier 5, Knockaert 3 (1), March 3 (1), Stephens 3, Propper 1 (4), Kayal 4, Izquierdo 2 (2), Skalak 3, Hemed 3, Murray 0 (3), Baldock 1 (2), Ulloa 2, Locadia 2, Dunk 1, Duffy 1, Gross 1, Murphy 1, Brown 1, Molumby 2, Hutchinson 1, Ince 1, Towell 1, Mateju 0 (2), Tilley 0 (1), Connolly 0 (1)
GOALS; Murray 12, Gross 7, Izquierdo 5 GoY, Hemed 2, Knockaert 3, March 1, Dunk 1, Ulloa 1, Locadia 1, og 1 = 34
Cups - Murray 2, Stephens 1, Ulloa 1, Locadia 1, Goldson 1, Tilley 1 = 7
CARDS: Red - Knockaert 1, Propper 1 = 2. Yellows - Dunk 7, Duffy 8, Murray 9, Knockaert 4, Bruno 3, Stephens 6, March 3, Propper 2, Izquierdo 2, Gross 2, Bong 2, Schelotto 3, Goldson 1, Kayal 2 = 54
Cups - Skalak 1, Knockaert 1, Baldock 1, Propper 1, Izquierdo 1, Kayal 1 = 6

PL & PL2 Signings & loans out Back to Top
Falmer Years - 2017-20 (seasons 7-9) Premier League & PL2 (U23).
Big money signing (15m+) on 4yr deal from Genk during close season 2019. 24yo winger has Belgium U21 caps and Europa League experience. Proven scorer at lower level on continent.
in 19 - Matt Clarke
First summer signing of new boss Graham Potter's reign, spending 3.5mill. Has EFL experience as young centre back with Pompey in L1. Signed a 4yr contract. Prospect to aim for the first team match-day squad.
in 19 - Jack Spong - (U23)
Elevated from U18 side to get a deal with U23 group. Midfielder with PL2 div1 apps already in the bag during 18/19 season.
in 19 - Ryan Longman - (U23)
Graduated to U23s with extended deal after promise in U18 group during 18/19. Winger who scores goals in 3:1 ratio.
in 19 - Jan Mlakar (out on loan)
Winter deadline day U23 deal for 20yo Slovenian striker who scores goals. Returned to home club Maribor on loan. Came through youth football in Italy. Has U21 caps & Europa Lg apps.
in 19 - Tudor-Cristian Baluta (out on loan)
19yo Midfielder signed for U23s at end of Jan window but went back to parent club in Romania. U19 & U21 caps and also an app in Nations League.
in 19 - Alexis Mac Allister (out on loan)
Acquired from Argentinos Juniors in Jan window and loaned back to them immediately. Product of their academy but a BHA future prospect as a goalscoring midfielder. Loaned to Boca Juniors for 19/20.
in 18 - Martin MONTOYA (22)
Eleventh hour summer deadline day signing from Valencia for experienced right back. Had form with Barca & Inter but 27yo got 4yrs at BHA. Champions League apps & Catalonia international. PL regular. Steps up into Bruno's shoes.
in 18 - Alireza JAHANBAKHSH (16)
Record buy around 17m for 24yo Iranian World Cup winger via Alkmaar on 5yr deal. Top scorer in Dutch league last term, a versatile player. Talks sense too. Hamstring injury reduced PL apps. At Asia Cup.
in 18 - Yves BISSOUMA (8)
Pre-season signing got a 5yr deal. Mali midfielder played for Lille and steps up to the Prem. French speaker but boots do the talking. FA Cup apps. On steep learning curve.
in 18 - David BUTTON (27)
July signing from Fulham to make up keeper numbers. Was at Charlton, Brentford and had previous loans away from Spurs. Good replacement for Ryan. FA Cup apps.
in 18 - BERNARDO da Silva Jr (30)
Brazilian defender who played in Germany and has experience in Europe competitions. Son of Brazil international Bernardo Fernandes da Silva. Claimed lb spot in PL & FA Cup. Potential to shine.
in 18 - Jason STEELE (23)
Keeper signed to be a homegrown part of 25 man PL squad in summer of 18. Experience with Sunderland, Blackburn & Middlesbro. Injury minimised any apps.
in 18 - Florin ANDONE (10)
Secured his striker services in close season for 5mill from La Coruna. Romanian international played in Spain for La Liga outfit Cordoba. Prolific scorer at those clubs. Competitve from subs bench but incurred injuries. Tough acclimatization.
in 18 - Leon BALOGUN (14)
Summer signing of big German c-d adds to 2nd season back line. Nigerian international with experience of World Cup, Africa Cup & Europa League. Lack of apps.
in 18 - Dan BURN (33)
26yo cent def from Wigan was Aug deadline signing for 4yrs. Tall with plenty of back line experience in EFL pyramid. Recovered from leg break. Stayed at Latics on loan to New Year. FA Cup apps. Bench regular.
in 18 - Peter Gwargis (U23)
Swedish 17yo midfielder got 3yr contract to bolster PL2 group. Has U17 caps and apps in home senior sides. In Sweden U18 squad.
in 18 - Leo Ostigard (U23 - 57)
Norwegian U19 defender arrived on 3yr deal prior to Aug k-o. Played at senior level for Molde in homeland. In Norway U21 squad. On fringes of senior squad.
in 18 - Anders Dreyer (U23 - out on loan)
Danish winger with Superliga credentials who scores goals to games at a 2:1 ratio. Has current U21 caps to boot. Went on loan in SPL from Jan 19.
in 18 - Billy Arce (U23 - out on loan)
Pre-season 4yr purchase for 20yo Ecuadorian striker prospect from Independiente. On loan to Extremadura in Spain div2 to Jan 19 then changed clubs to Emelec until Jan 20.
in 18 - Percy Tau (26 - out on loan)
pre-season arrival from Sundowns in SA where was player of the season. An international with 12 caps the 24yo is a prolific goal scorer in South Africa. Out on loan in Belgium for season. Selected in SA Africa Cup squad. Progressive with experience.
in 18 - Hugo Keto (U23 - out on loan)
goalie on a free from Arsenal in July pre-season. 20yo Finland U21 keeper came via Helsinki to originally join Gunners youth squad in 2014. App in Finland UEFA qual squad. Feb 19 on loan at Waterford.
in 18 - Bojan Radulovic (U23)
signed on Jan 18 transfer deadline from Lleida for development squad. Prolific scorer in Spanish lower leagues. Went back to Spain 4th tier outfit for first part of 18/19 season. Part of successful PL2 div1 squad.
in 18 - Warren O'Hora (U23 - 53)
18yo Irish cent-def. Has Rep of Ireland U19 caps. Came from Bohemians on 2.5yr deal with dev group.
in 18 - Viktor Gyokeres (U23 - 42)
19yo Swedish striker with U19 caps. Joined 2nd squad from January window. Part of team promoted to PL2 Div1. On fringes of PL & FA Cup match-day groups. Raised to Sweden squad. In U21 team.
in 18 - Alex Cochrane - (U23 50)
Made multi apps for U18s from '16 and graduated to U23 side. Full back got an extended deal after being in PL2 div1 side. Checkatrade Trophy apps.
in 18 - Jurgen LOCADIA (9)
24yo striker from PSV Eindhoven got a 4yr deal at cost of 14m in Jan window. Holland U21 caps. Limited PL sub apps prior to run in side. Third striker option.
in 17 - Ezequiel SCHELOTTO (21 - out on loan)
Arrived via Inter & Sporting on last day of August window. 28yo Argentinian had nearly 200 games in Europe as a defender and wingback. Made regular PL apps 1st season but not in 25 man squad for 2nd year. On loan to Verona from Jan 19 window.
in 17 - Jose IZQUIERDO (19)
Club record signing just prior to Prem k-o, of 13.5m for the 25yo Columbian internat'l winger from Brugge. Had cup & league success in Belgium from 2014, plus experience in Europa & Champions League. Became a PL favourite but suffered long-term knee injury after World Cup app.
in 17 - Davy PROPPER (24)
25yo Dutchman, to fill a goalscoring midfield role, gotten in for club record fee of around 10m. Played in Champions League for PSV and intern'l caps for Netherlands. PL regular pick. In Nations League squad.
in 17 - Aaron Connolly (U23 - 44 out on loan)
Came thru academy ranks and noted for a very good goals to games ratio. Rep of Ireland U19 caps. EFL Cup apps. Went on loan at Luton after Jan 19 window. Voted 18/19 PL2 PoY. In U21 squad summer tournament.
in 17 - Jayson Molumby (U23 - 49)
Young midfield prospect elevated from development teams. U21 RoI caps. EFL Cup app. Long term injury but on bench in 19 FAC5 tie. In Ireland U21 squad summer tournament.
in 17 - Max Sanders (U23 - 41)
Horsham lad was impressive m-f captain of academy side promoted to elite div1. Eng U18 caps. EFL Cup app. On fringes of PL squad.
in 17 - James Tilley (43 U23 - out on loan)
Sussex born forward rose from development group to fringes of first team match-day squad. EFL Cup app. Went on loan to Cork from Jan 19 but injured.
in '17 - Jordan Davies (U23 - 52)
18yo from Wrexham has Welsh U19 caps. Left back has potential with U23 squad to make the grade long term.
in 17 - Soufyan Ahannach (U23 - 39)
21yo winger from Almere in Holland got a 3yr contract. Prolific scoring record in Dutch second tier. Loaned to Rotterdam for 2018 but suffered a broken leg. Back for PL2 div1 in 19.
In 17 - Steven Alzate (U23 - 46)
18yo attacker got a 3yr deal when joining from Orient to play in the U23 PL2 Div2 league. Part of team promoted to Div1. On loan to Swindon in 18/19 to Jan1 but returned injured. Signed extra 3yr deal.
in 17 - Tom McGill
Came thru academy ranks from '14 to represent England squads between posts at youth levels up to U19. Progressed to U23 group but went on loan in County leagues at Worthing, Greenwich & Basingstoke from '18. Got extended deal to 2021.
in 17 - Markus SUTTNER (29 out on loan)
The second player from Ingolstadt and signed in home country of Austria during Albion summer camp there. Experienced left-sided defender who Chris Hughton believed could be effective in the Premier League. Not a PL regular but made EFL Cup apps. On loan at Dusseldorf from Jan 19.
in 17 - Maty RYAN (1)
A close season 5 million (record), 5 year signing of Australian International keeper from Valencia. He said, 'rain, hail or shine I will be there to try and contribute the best I can and hopefully help the team to some successes along the way.' Number one choice in PL & Aussies team. Not challenged by others in keepers union.
in 17 - Pascal GROSS (13)
First summer signing for an initial season in the elite. 25yo midfielder from German outfit Ingolstadt penned a 4yr deal as BHA prepared to enter the Prem. 200 apps in the Bundesliga top 2 divs. Considered a playmaker, with an impressive range of accurate passing. PL first choice on team-sheet as a no.10. 17/18 Player of the year. Injury hit second campaign apps.
in '17 - Glenn MURRAY (17)
Signed permanently in the January window after arriving on loan from Bournemouth in summer of 2016. Second spell at BHA and a prolific goalscorer, netting 56 times prior to joining Palace after achieving promo with Albion in 2011 at Withdean. Also on loan at Reading in 2014 then moved to B'mouth in 2015. Regular scorer in PL side. 100 BHA goals over 2 spells.
in '16 - Shane DUFFY (4)
24yo Rep of Ireland International transferred from Blackburn at end of August transfer window. Biggest BHA signing then at 4 million. First choice c-d in PL and for home country where voted best player.
in 16 - Ben White (28 - U23 out on loan)
elevated briefly to first team squad from Academy group. Contract extended to 2022. Promising cent-def had EFL Cup apps. On loan at Newport for 17/18. With U23 PL2 div1 team and close to PL match-day group. On loan at Peterboro in 19, then Leeds for 19/20 season.
in '16 - Anthony KNOCKAERT (11)
French wideman got a three & half year deal in the New Year. BHA paid 2m to Standard Liege but the 24yo had previous with Leicester in the Championship. Instant impact in a team chasing promotion. Much tougher to star in the Prem. Flair player but emotional reactions.
in '15 - Gaetan BONG (3)
Joined in close season, for 2yrs, on a free from Wigan. 27yo was Cameroonian left back and had played prior for Olympiakos in Greece. Recovered from injury to be PL regular pick. In home country squad again. Some PL second season apps.
in '15 - Tomer Hemed (25 - Out on loan)
Experienced Israeli striker signed for Albion after a short spell at Almeria. Played in Spain and homeland for several clubs and had a good goals to games ratio. Not a Prem regular. Borrowed by QPR to June 19. In Israel squad.
in '15 - Beram KAYAL (7)
Came in the January transfer window from Celtic. Got a 2.5yr deal to give some quality in midfield. Experience in Champions League and also caps for Israel. 26yo was box to box player and had defensive & creative qualities. PL apps from bench. In Israel squad. Abilties under-used.
in 14 - Dale STEPHENS (6)
M-f; Bolton born and youngster at Bury. 24yo signed from Charlton for 3yrs at Xfer window. Spotted by Nathan Jones at lev2 but experience in lower league with Oldham - 70+ apps, 12 goals. 80+ apps for Addicks. Became a BHA m-f stalwart. Steady & solid but no playmaker.
Solly MARCH (20)
Sussex lad who came thru Albion's youth & development squads. Flying winger who initially was added to the 12/13 match-day Championship squad and went on thru to figure in the Prem.
Lewis DUNK (5)
Brighton boy and product of BHA's Academy prior to the Amex & Lancing training centre. First became part of 1st team squad at Withdean in 9/10 and brought forward during Gus Poyet's lower league revolution. Top league cent def who also gained England squad call up in 2018. Seagulls captain's armband too.
Chris Walton (32 - out on loan)
Keeper; was first choice in U21 squad. Then elevated to reserve choice in match-day squad. England credentials for U19. 14/15 Debut in COC at Spurs. Lg debut & mom to boot. Kept under wraps at tough pro level until development more advanced. 15/16 - loaned to Bury or was it Stanley I presume? Groin injury. Then loaned to Pymouth - his home town club. 16/17 - on loan at Luton. Recalled in Feb when Maenpaa injured. Went on loan to Southend in April. 17/18 - only way is up, out on loan at Wigan. Got injured but went back to be no.1 and a huge future prospect. Signed new 4yr deal. L1 keeper of the season. 18/19 - season loan at Wigan in the Championship.
* * * * * * * * * *
in 12 - BRUNO Salter Grau - out 19
Gus Poyet managed to obtain services of Vicente for a second year and to sweeten the pill also got Bruno in - ex-contract from Valencia. The two were team mates there and so helped both to settle at BHA for the second Championship season at the Amex. The 31yo Spaniard from Barcelona played for Espanyol, Lleida, Almeria and then Valencia. The no nonsense right back was first a defender but would go forward to aid attacks. He had over 360 apps in his home country and scored seven goals. Bruno was experienced and also brought other strengths to the position. Suffered extended injuries but recovered to perform well at Champ's & PL levels. El Capitan retired at end of the 18/19 season, instantly becoming a club legend. Took badges and became a BHA development coach.
12/13 - first choice. Something of a fans favourite. Got class, skill, flair and charisma. Got several Mom awards. Heel/calf strains etc and fragile. 13/14 - fitness carefully monitored. 10 yellows and bans. Had good & bad days. Lost scoring touch. 14/15 - started as a real old pro and easily adapted to wingback or m-f role - got forward to score. Needed to stand up and be counted but straight red! Regular when fit on week by week basis. 15/16 - renewed vigor and good form so always on teamsheet. 16/17 - made club captain but started as a centre back. Outstanding senior pro in wingback role. 17/18 - got this extra year deal, given the shirt & armband. Class act in this div. Rested sometimes with back problem. But another year added to contract for the 38yo. 20+ apps. 18/19 - club captain but not many PL apps. Hamstring prob in 1st game. Managed minutes for short series of games. FA Cup apps. Run-in hero with pro displays. Retired at end of season.
in '16 - Richie Towell - out 19
24yo m-f attacker signed to play from New Year 16 after agreeing terms for 2.5yr deal in Dec. Was on books at Dundalk in Ireland but previously with Hibs & Celtic in Scotland. A Dubliner, he scored plenty of goals in his home country so a move to England was better than just luck. Extended contract until 2019 but twice went out on loan.
16/17 - got injured but out in the cold? FAC app. An enigma. Got a contract to 2019. 17/18 - Went out on season loan to Rotherham. League Cup app. 18/19 - transfer speculation, out on loan to Millers again. Let go June 19. Joined Salford for next term in EFL.
in 18 - Ben Barclay - out 19
Part of academy progression who was included in PL pre-season. Capt of U23 side. EFL Cup app. Went on loan to Notts Co. Released at end of 18/19 season.
in 18 - Joe Tomlinson - out 19
Young lad from Yeovil FC joined 2nd group in summer as a talented defender with prospects. Loaned to Bognor for experience. Released at end of 18/19 season.
in 18 - Steven Lujbicic - out 19
Young 18yo striker from Iceland with U18 caps. Integrated with development group promoted to PL2 div1. Went on loan to Eastbourne Boro from Jan 19 window. Released at end of 18/19 season.
in 17 - Ales Mateju - out 19
Czech U21 int'l right back from Viktoria Plzen. Another youngster initially for development group. 17/18 - playing sub in League Cup ties. Played in successful U23 side promoted to PL2 div1 & Sussex Senior Cup winners. 18/19 - went on loan abroad to Brescia. Signed for them full time in summer of 19.
in 17 - Billy Collings - out 19
Keeper; Jan 2017 arrival via Reading. Learning trade in U23 set up. 18/19 - part of successful PL2 div1 squad but let go.
in 17 - Mathias Normann - out 19
21yo Norwegian midfielder drafted in from Bodo Glimt. Got 3yr deal to prove he can translate to EFL standard at least. Immediately went on loan to Molde for 6 months which was extended in '18. Left to join Rostov in Russia from Jan 19 window.
in 17 - Josh Kerr - out 19
A young defender from Celtic youth side brought in as a future prospect from U23 football. The 19yo had experience in the kids Champions League and Scottish Cup to boot. On loan at Derry from Jan19. Released at end of 18/19 season.
in '16 - Ben Hall - out 19
youngster who made the Motherwell cent-def pair, transferred to BHA with aims of breaking into the 1st 11 squad. From northern Ireland and a U19 cap to boot. Went on loan to Notts Co in 18/19 but returned injured. Released.
in 15 - Owen Moore - out 19
defender; been on books since 2015 via Arsenal academy. PL2 div2 experience and EFL Trophy apps. 18/19 - PL2 div1 apps but let go.
in 15 - Dan Mandroiu - out 18
midfield; Irish born lad joined BHA in 2015. PL2 div2 & EFL Trophy apps. Joined home country club Bohemians (IL Prem) in December 2018.
in 15 - Will Collar - out 19
another Sussex youngster to step up from juniors and go thru academy development U18 & U23 stages. Part of successful PL2 squads during two seasons 17-19. Match day captain. EFL Cup app. Joined Hamilton in SPL for 19/20.

BHA COACHES  Back to Top
Falmer Years - 2011-19
Initial organisation - Championship.
From the successful League1 title-winners of '10/11 at Withdean, Albion had Assistant Manager Mauricio Taricco to help Gus Poyet on the practice pitch. He duly retained first team coach and reserve eleven manager, Charlie Oatway - a previous player in the Withdean era. Also re-appearing, based at our new Falmer facility were; Tony Godden (GK coach), Luke Williams (development squad), plus Steve Brown and Vic Bragg (youth team). However the club soon reorganised with just Bragg answering to original Director of Football Martin Hinshelwood.
Gus Poyet had a strategy for the future that required all squads, from youth to first team, to play passing football using similar shapes and tactics. Thus Hinsh and Bragg became Academy Managers in the revamped set-up for 2012 onwards. Simon Rusk took over as Youth Team Coach.
The medical team too quickly shuffled the Amex pack; Nathan Ring (head physio), Matt Miller (conditioning & sport science) and Dean Lobb with Antony Stuart (sports therapists). Ex-player Paul Watson remained as physio, Stephen McAleer was youth physio, Robin Turner resumed orthopaedic consultant role, while Luke Hampton was club masseur again. James Clarke-Reed got appointed performance analyst. Early in 2012 Dr Helge Riepenhof, a top German sports doctor, was appointed full-time head of sport-med&science.
Poyet wanted professionalism and expertise in all associated areas, so promoted BHA stalwart Ade Cooper to Chief Scout (opposition analyst). He took over in lieu of John Stevenson, recent head of football operations, who in turn had replaced Zigor Aranalde for '11/12. Another ex-Seagull Warren Aspinal, was re-employed as southern scout. Ex-manager Barry Lloyd still associated with BHA in a talent spotting role.
From January 2012, David Burke became official Hd of Ops. Incidentally, Paul Barber took over as CEO and he had an FA coaching qualification and all.
In close season of '12/13 Andy Beasley replaced Tony Godden as keepers coach. He had previous with Gus at Swindon and Leeds. Then John Morling became Academy Manager in lieu of Martin Hinshelwood. Later Mervyn Day (ex-Chelsea keeper) got appointed manager of scouting.
Personnel changes from 2013 - Championship.
At end of '12/13, Taricco and Oatway were suspended by the club along with manager Poyet. Tanno was soon cleared of any wrong-doing. However he left the club following the sacking of Gus Poyet. Oatway moved on soon afterwards - thanked by the club but in undisclosed ignominious circumstances.
During the close season, Juan Torrijo Navaro, Rubens Martinez and Joaquin Gomez came on board as fitness and assistant coaches to new gaffer Oscar Garcia. Simultaneously Luke Williams vacated his job with the development squad. Keeper coach Andy Beasley also left. Nathan Jones an ex-Seagull from the Withdean era (see squads y2k onwards) accepted the post of head assistant coach. He had previously been asst mgr at Yeovil before moving to Charlton. He could also speak Spanish - mucho bueno senor. Paul Holder began as Head of Academy coaching. Simon Ireland (ex-Blackburn) got appointed academy U21 coach.
More revisions for 2014 - Championship.
Sami Hyypia became manager but Nathan Jones remained - initially as First Team Coach, then Asst Mgr and Joaquin Gomez took that coaching role. Goalkeeping coach now was Antii Niemi, former custodian with top pedigree as a handler. David Burke was still Head of Ops and now assisted by Paul Winstanley as recruitment manger.
John Morling was Head of Academy - at the new training complex in Lancing. The Academy was granted category one status - to play in PremLg div2. U21 coach was Simon Ireland and U18 coach was Simon Rusk. Mark Anderson was academy recruitment manager.
Dr Reipenhof stood down from the medical services unit, so Adam Brett took the post. Seagulls strength & conditioning manager was now Tom Barnden. The club doc became Dr Stephen Lewis.
2015 thru 17 - Championship.
With the resignation of Sami Hyypia just before Xmas, Tony Bloom decided to revamp admin and David Burke was first out of the Academy door. Nathan Jones became caretaker prior to the New Year. Chris Calderwood as former right-hand man of new boss Chris Hughton, then joined BHA as asst mgr. Jones became 1st team coach with Niemi in support but Gomez left. And Simon Rusk stepped up to U21s. Head of admin was now Paul Mullen. Ewan Chester joined the scouting team.
For '15/16, ex-Albion goalie Ben Roberts took over as keeper coach. At New Year Nathan Jones left to become manager at Luton. He was eventually succeeded as first team coach by Paul Nevin, a former Prem Lg head of coaching, in the 2016 close season. Nathan Jones was headhunted in Jan19 by Stoke and took Joaquin Gomez with him to the ambitious ex-Prem oufit.
In '16/17 Simon Rusk took charge under the new U23 Prem Lg div2 status and also Checkatrade Trophy competition. In November Calderwood left and was replaced in a week by Paul Trollope as asst mngr - he had previously worked with Hughton at B'ham & Norwich.
***From Aug 2017 - in the Premiership***
Assistant manager - Paul Trollope, First team coach - Paul Nevin, GK coach - Ben Roberts, veteran keeper Casper Ankergren joined the U23 gk coaching staff. Strength & conditioning - Tom Barnden.
Academy Manager - John Morling, U23 coach - Simon Rusk, U23 asst/Academy gk coach - Shannon Ruth, U18 coach - Ian Buckman, youth coach - Martin Hinshelwood. Original coach Vic Bragg moved into another role at BHA.
Support; Head of Med - Adam Brett. Physios - Paul Watson, Sam Blanchard. Doctor - Stephen Lewis. Sports Science - Martin Springham.
During summer 2018 David Weir was appointed in the new post of pathway development manager to oversee loans out for U23 & squad players. Ex-fullback Liam Rosenior didn't exactly hang up boots when moving into academy admin as U23 assistant coach. And legend Bobby Zamora officially returned to the club as an ambassador. Steve Sidwell also announced his retirement and rejoined as asst youth coach, with boot room duties and an ambassador to boot.
From spring 2019 Dan Ashworth was hired as technical director, with aspects involving sports science, academy & recruitment. Those 3 dept managers reported to him. Manager Chris Hughton was not directly part of that heirarchy. First team coach Paul Nevin was called up to the England training group. In Nov '18 CEO Paul Barber was made Deputy Chairman by the Board - he also had responsibilities for PL clubs at FA meetings.
At end of the 18/19 season manager Chris Hughton, assistant Paul Trollope & 1st team coach Paul Nevin were all relieved of duties. Within a week Graham Potter accepted an offer to join BHA as head coach and brought his assistant Billy Reid, coach Bjorn Hamberg and also Kyle Macaulay along (assistant for recruitment to Paul Winstanley), to enhance Seagulls set up at Lancing. GK coach - Ben Roberts, U23 coach - Simon Rusk, U18 coach - Mikey Harris. Newly retired Bruno joined the team as senior player development coach. Liam Rosenior left for a job with Derby County coaching staff.

Goalkeepers  Back to Top
Falmer Years - 2011-2019 (seasons 1-8) Championship & Premier League.
17 - 19 (seasons 7-8) Premier League; Ryan, Steele, Button, Maenpaa, Krul, (Walton loaned out) .
18/19 - Maenpaa & Krul left in close season of 2018, so Jason Steele & David Button came in from Sunderland & Fulham respectively to make up numbers. Walton again played at Wigan for the second season. Star U23 stopper Robert Sanchez went on loan to Forest Green. Hugo Keto then joined the group.
17/18 - veteran Casper Ankergren joined the coaching staff under ex-Albion custodian Ben Roberts. While Championship stalwart David Stockdale signed for Birmingham prior to the Prem campaign. Australia international team no.1 Maty Ryan was signed as his replacement during the close season. Number two Niki Maenpaa also penned a new deal. Meanwhile Chris Walton went on loan to Wigan. Tim Krul came in on loan from Newcastle before the August window closed - later got a 1yr deal.
'14 - '17 (seasons 4-6) Championship; Stockdale, Maenpaa, (Walton), Ankergren
15/16 - young Chris Walton went on loan to Bury for 15-16 & Luton 16-17. David Stockdale and Finnish goalie Niki Maenpaa were left to dispute the gloves - exclusively for the former Prem custodian, with the Finn on the bench.
14/15 - Casper Ankergren was the only senior keeper retained from the first three seasons at the Amex. But he played only a bit part in subsequent years. David Stockdale from Fulham had been recruited as no.1, two weeks before opening day of the '14/15 campaign. When he was injured, U19 custodian Chris Walton deputised and showed maturity beyond his young age. Bizarrely, Ali Al-Habsi came in from Wigan on loan for a month but merely played once that Nov.
'11 - '14 (seasons 1-3) Championship; Brezovan, Kuszczak, Ankergren
12/13 - In the close season Tomasz Kuszczak signed a 2y deal. He became first choice throughout that term & '13/14. But at end of those 2 campaigns he & Brezovan were both released.
11/12 - on day1 GP played Casper Ankergren again (once at Leeds) as no.1. He'd done good for BHA's previous season in Lg1 with clean sheets. Earlier first choice Peter Brezovan (originally via Swindon) was on the bench as reserve keeper. Third goalie Michael Poke (initially from So'ton) was back-up to the union. Poke and youngster Mitch Walker from Dev Squad (who did a spell on loan) turned out in reserves and for BHA seconds in the Sussex Senior Cup competition. Before end of October '11, Poyet made a short loan move for veteran Steve Harper from Newcastle. Brezovan regained the gloves at end of 2011, while Poke went on loan to Bristol Rovers. Poyet next signed David Gonzales (ex-Man City) for 2012 as late competition for the gk jersey. But both these back-up keepers, plus youngster Walker, were released at end of '11/12 campaign.

 Back to Top

Sami Hyypia Back to Top
Falmer Years - 2014 Championship.
From playing in red to bossing in blue.
During the '14 close season a former Finnish international and Liverpool legend became Albion's third manager at the Amex in as many years. Hyypia had limited experience as boss with Bayer Leverkusen in the Bundesliga after hanging up boots there in 2011. He also coached Finland's squad. As a player Hyypia enjoyed success on Merseyside and was a key man in the Champions League side of 2005.
However, his record in charge of BHA was poor and with Albion adrift in the bottom three, he resigned his post in mid December - just before Xmas.
Hyypia's strategic brand of wingless shape with narrow front runners did not prove successful and many supporters found it totally ineffective.

CHAMPIONSHIP Ins & Outs '14 - '17 Back to Top
Falmer Years - 2014-2017 (seasons 4-6) Championship.
in 17 - Tim Krul - out 18 (Prem)
Came on loan from Newcastle at end of August window but signed permanently during September. The Dutch international keeper had been in the north since 2005. Second choice for PL gloves. 29yo experienced custodian had spells at homeland clubs and internationals to boot. In 25 man Prem pool and on bench. League Cup & FA Cup apps. Declined new contract.
Rohan Ince - out 18 (Championship)
midfield; came thru Chelsea youth and made an impact at BHA when used in holding role in lieu of Liam Bridcutt. Tall and strong, good in air. Championship; 13/14 - competitive but how creative? 14/15 - good in holding role and looked like a defender really. Big & athletic but not ungainly. 15/16 - came on as shield in front of rearguard. Very few apps so sent on loan to Fulham. 16/17 - middle of pecking order as defensive shield. LC & FAC apps. Went on loan to Swindon. Prem; 17/18 - looking in from the outside. On loan at Bury. League Cup app.
Kazenga LuaLua - out 18 (Championship)
Long serving wide man since 2011 departed in Jan window. Made 183 apps and scored 22 goals. Loaned from Newcastle '9/10. 19yo is a brother of Pompey's Congolese striker Lomana. Was ultra quick, can play l or r and a crowd pleaser. Done v good and form better. Then hamstrung in more ways than one. '10/11 L1; Gus got him again until New Year. Stunning first senior goal and faster than ever. On fire and can be an inferno. Hot shot or what? Loose cannon and dangerous. Broken ankle - out for season. '11/12 CHAMPS - returned on loan and had to deliver for BHA. Hamstring probs. Had more probs trying to beat Championship defenders. Signed permanently but was on bench. '12/13 - gotta work on full game. Impact player only. '13/14 - well, new coach etc so what next? Got selected but then had knee trouble. Impact as ever. '14/15 - don't call him impact only ever again! 15/16 - started like a hurricane but got injured. Back for run-in. 16/17 - injury prone. LC apps. Sent off U23 and long ban. Went on loan to QPR for '17. 17/18 - got a 6 month loan deal to QPR again. Signed for Sunderland in Jan 18.
Casper Ankergren - out 17 (Championship)
Keeper; 30yo Danish custodian with experience at Leeds in '9/10. Got 2 years, signing just before first fixture. '10/11 L1; lucky at times and in/out form. Strong hands and regular saves away apps - many clean sheets. Not too convincing around the area. But did get PoM for Sept and Mar - clean sheets too. Beat 3 times in high scoring matches. Wound up crowds with slow play. Didn't chuck himself around too much. '11/12 CHAMPS - knew the score and it meant keeping things cleaner. Off the boil as campaign hotted up at this level - needed to up it fast. Dropped but back after Steve Harper left. Not comanding in area on crosses. Left on bench. '12/13 - guaranteed seat on bench. FA Cup flop. Failed to challenge for gloves. '13/14 - settled for the quiet life with line of least resistance. '14/15 - reserve again and lacked ambition. 15/16 - not sighted east of Lancing. 16/17 - ditto. Made assistant to coach keepers.
in & out 17 - Vegard Forren
Arrived in March as stop gap central defender. The 29yo was a Norway international with Europa League experience. Played 10 years for Molde but once briefly on Southampton's books. Released in close season.
Jake Forster-Caskey - out 2017 (Championship)
Youngest ever teenager (16 and a little bit) to turn out for first team. Not big but man enough to compete in FL. Gus didn't rush him and included in new '10/11 develoment squad. Got England U17 credentials. World is his oyster if he can crack it. FAC5 app and looked Prem quality. '11/12 CHAMPS - gonna make the grade at some point in future. Sub on last day of 2011. Scored on full debut at New Year and on list for a reg place. Goal again in FAC3 on second start. Got crocked. '12/13 - Signed for another couple of seasons at least. Went on loan to Oxford in L2. '13/14 - tough to break thru into 1st 11? Variable displays. '14/15 - selected but needed to improve again - U21 call up. '15/16 - went on loan to MK Dons. 16/17 - on loan at Rotherham & then transferred to Charlton.
in 16 - Jiri Skalak - out 18 (Prem)
Big signing from Czech republic top div for wideman to help with 2016 Champ's promo push. Full international and 23yo also played in Europa League. Had previous with likes of Sparta Prague before going places on loan. Fair record of a goal per 6 matches on average. Loves England and likes blue & volt. Excellent dead ball delivery. 15/16 - played left flankers part in Championship promo push. 16/17 - not always first choice on left flank. Reluctance to go past defenders down wing. Defensive qualities tho. 17/18 - in 25 man PL pool but not match-day 18 on bench. Merely cover for any two injured flankers higher in the pecking order. League Cup & FA Cup apps but not q-f. 18/19 - pre-season transferred to Millwall.
in '16 - Steve Sidwell - out 18 (Prem)
The veteran midfielder signed a full contract for 12 months following a successful loan spell during the 15-16 run-in. Had Prem credentials via Stoke and was once on Albion books briefly as a transfer prospect in Withdean days. Been around the block in past years at Arsenal, Reading, Chelsea, Villa, Fulham and Stoke, so knew the score. Came off bench and looked ok in blue as well. And was a winner to boot. 16/17 - selected for 20+ apps but had competition in centre of park. Not quite the status now of Prem career but used experience very well. Awarded Championship goal of the season. 17/18 - in 25 man pool. Back surgery & ankle problem - out of training for most of season. No apps. Retired to become asst youth coach (U16) and a 3rd club ambassador.
Inigo Calderon - out 2016
wingback; offered contract at end of '9/10. Nasty hip injury curtailed short term success. Returned as Godfather Gus fav boy. '10/11 L1; Got to capt side on day1. Done well and liked to be up and back on right flank. Couple of cracking goals and all. Pretty fair full-back, needed to be tight defensively. Red card spoiled decent record. Slight loss of form in mid season, although super late season goals. Regular selection and voted in lg1 players team. PoY candidate. '11/12 CHAMPS - gave it a right pop, to see how far it goes. 5 Yellows & ban. Keyhole surgery on knee. Stunning strike for first goal. Lost his place but returned. Stand-in captain. '12/13 - competition for place and second choice. Competitive and likes to go forward again. Sent off at Leeds in match 45. Contract extended. '13/14 - chased any vacant wingback pos. Sent off in LC shambles. FA cancelled red card. Useful replacement on either flank. '14/15 - tough to be picked regular. Sent off in Cup tie. Useful stand-in and also as captain. Converted to winger and scored goals! PoY. 15/16 - on bench sometimes. Became stand in left back.
Adam Chicksen - out 2016
left back; 21yo prospect signed in 2013 close season by managerless BHA's talent-spotter team in lieu of new head coach. Kid came from MK Dons and was delighted to be at the Amex. Well, who wouldn't be? '13/14 - had something to prove. Got a small chance and did ok. Sometimes on bench. '14/15 - only sub for left flank job. Went on loan at Gillingham & Fleetwood. 15/16 - went on loan at Orient & Gillingham again.
Gordon Greer - out 2016
Central def; 29yo moved from Swindon for couple of hundred grand plus pocket change. Comes from Jockland and turned out for Kilmarnock once or twice. Made club capt. '10/11 L1; Sent off twice and bans. Thoroughly unprofessional and needed to rethink aggressive flaw. Injured calf, marked time with family issues. Was on bench, then on field. First choice, upped his game. No stroll in the park though. Generally commanded rearguard with solid displays. Red for a Glasgow kiss in run-in. In L1 players team. '11/12 CHAMPS - capable of leading L1 title winners in the Championship. Injured calf again. Struggled a tad with good attackers at this level. Sent off again. Plenty of gob but did ok. Abdominal probs. Poy runner-up. '12/13 - looked secure enough at BHA attempt to step up. Useful pairing with El-Abd. Trouble against good strikers in the air. Hamstring prob. Got contract extended. '13/14 - got into Scots squad. Muscle injury. Getting it done until red card. Over 40 apps, so Garcia loved him with Upson. '14/15 - got a new partner in Dunk and useful pairing thru season. Scotland cap. Niggling knee injury. First name on teamsheet. 10Y = ban. 15/16 - goes on & on and in Scot squad again. Suffered injury and some time out. Came back like GG does but mostly sat on bench.
in '16 - Jonah Ayunga - out 18
came in during Jan window from Dorchester to join U21 squad. A Dorset lad who had form as a striker in county games and Southern League. Joined Sligo & later Galway in Ireland, on loan for 2017 but broke a leg. On loan again, to Poole Town in '18.
in '16 - Henrik Bjordal - out 18
Future prospect joined in Jan window as part of U21 group. 18yo from Norway is an attacking midfielder or winger and signed for 2.5yr. Had experience in top div of homeland league and U21 caps. Went on loan to Gothenburg in '17. Part of U23 team promoted to PL2 Div1 in '18. Moved on to a Belgium club in summer 18.
in '16 - Oliver Norwood - out 19
25yr old midfielder arrived in the week before season kick-off. A Northern Ireland international, it was maybe the right move to come here from Reading. 3yr deal for NI playmaker. Good grounding as youth at Man Utd but sees the Championship as his premier career.
16/17 - provided competition in mf for crucial season. Needed to step up to make mark as influencial player. On loan to Fulham for 17/18 & Sheff Utd in 18 - signed for SU, so left Jan 19. Part of Blades Prem promo squad.
in '15 - Elvis Manu - out 17 (Championship)
Young striker/winger from Feyenoord got a three year deal until age 25. Another one for the future with Holland U21 caps. Went on loan back to Dutch league in 2017. Never in Prem plans. Transferred to Turkish football.
in '15 - Connor Goldson - out 18 (Prem)
Central defender from Shrewsbury penned a 4yr deal. 22yo northerner from Yorkshire who came thru ranks with the midlands club in lower leagues. Was in 14/15 PFA L2 side and Poy at Shrews. Required heart surgery. Not a Prem regular.
cent def; signed in Aug '15 to add to competition for places in rearguard and be part of Albion future. Was with Wolves as a kid but ended up on the channel coast via Shrewsbury. 15/16 - waited his chance and got it after Xmas. Got better with games. Good quality partnership with Dunk. 16/17 - came back from injury with League Cup & FAC app. Required surgery for heart problem - out rest of season. 17/18 - full recovery and in 25 man pool as sub. Upped his game to feature. League & FA Cup apps. MoM on PL debut but very limited apps. Bids came in from Rangers during spring of 18 and so he signed for the SPL side.
in '15 - Jamie Murphy - out '18 (Prem)
A winger from Scotland, playing for Motherwell but had last couple of seasons with Sheff Utd. 25yo got in for 1.5mill during the open Aug window. Wanted to play for national side and this was a step up towards that.
A Glaswegian with history in SPL and up north. Plenty of experience in attack and can perform on either flank. Scores goals and fancies the Championship to enhance Scot call up. 15/16 - straight red card & appeal dismissed. Had a knack of scoring but sometimes flatters to deceive. 16/17 - started on bench as impact player. Had good & bad days. 17/18 - in PL 25 man pool but not on bench as impact sub. League Cup app. Went on loan to Rangers for 2018 then signed permanently.
in '15 - Uwe Huenemeier - out 18. (Prem)
During the Aug transfer window, Albion signed the German central defender from the Bundesliga second division on a 3yr deal. He had not played outside his native leagues but was a product of Borussia Dortmund and so thought to be of good value at English level2. 29yo from German outfit Paderborn for 1.4mill. Was capt there, although part of relegated team. Kicks it & heads it like you would expect from the land of super efficiency. Made the move to the UK south coast to improve his English & breast-stroke at least. 15/16 - Straight in to team... but got injured. First reserve in pecking order but stepped up again with good displays. Then injured again and went off the map. 16/17 - returned with League Cup & FA Cup apps. Proved capable of being top class as a Championship centre half. 17/18 - in PL 25 man pool but unable to get a 1st 11 place. League cup apps. FA Cup apps. Returned to Paderborn for next season.
in '15 - Bobby Zamora - out '16
Ex BHA legend BZ returned to the club aged 35 to try and make a second impact. Prem experience and on verges of England team before injury struck when in prime. Hoping to make it as a Championship striker but injuries cut that very short. Returned to the club in summer 2018 as an ambassador.
in '15 - Jack Harper - out '17
19yo arrived via Real Madrid and is Scottish U19 striker. Left Spain with a knee injury but had hopes of flying high with Seagulls in future. Returned to Malaga in Jan '17 window. Only 25 U23 apps & 4 goals in 2 seasons.
in '15 - Vahid Hambo - out '17
came in mid July from Finland via FC Inter. 21yo striker scored lots of goals in homeland and penned a 2yr deal. Released after only making U23 squad.
in '15 - Niki Maenpaa - out 18 (Prem)
signed at start of pre-season to join goalkeeping union from Venlo. 30yo had international caps with Finland. Also played in France. Third choice for PL gloves. Had a desire to stop any more shots at Finns around the Amex for a few years. 15/16 - But only used in cup ties and as first reserve on bench. 16/17 - got the call when Stockdale injured but soon replaced & back on bench. LC & FAC apps. Sustained shoulder injury in FAC4 at Lincoln. 17/18 - in PL 25 man pool but 3rd choice keeper. League Cup & FA Cup apps. Left in summer 18.
in '15 - Liam Rosenior - out 18 (Prem)
Ex Hull full back with lots of games for other sides like Fulham & Bristol City. Was U21 in days of yore and still had something to offer at this level. Capt for Cup ties with rotated squad. On fringes of PL group. Londoner who went to Reading and Ipswich before ending up at Hull. Arrived summer 16. Plenty of campaigning under his belt and just glad to be here, on the south coast again... instead of Torquay. 15/16 - played wide right and made a fist of it. Reverted to left back and did a job there too. Carried off - knee damage. Kept shirt on return. 16/17 - started as fullback. Out for 3 months injured. Made successful return. 17/18 - in PL 25 man pool but not anticipated to raise game as he looked to coach eventually. Captain in League Cup & FA Cup apps. Only on PL fringes all season. Retired to become academy U23 asst coach. Left to coach for Derby in July '19.
in 14 - Sam Baldock - out 18 (Prem)
Arrived prior to closing of the transfer window and became tenth signing of this totally revamped squad (included 3 on loan). Not classic no.9 for the Championship but very useful average of a goal per three games. 25yo came thru MK Dons, West Ham and Bristol City, where he was L1 top scorer for 13/14. Prolific marksman signed a 4yr contract. 14/15 - Found it difficult to net and merely looked an average front man as sole c-f. Used in wideman role. Knee injury cut short season. 15/16 - showed good touches as part of 442. Lack of goals an issue. Injury prone. 16/17 - began on the bench. Sent off. Became strike partner with Murray. Yet more injuries. 17/18 - got 3yrs extra but required surgery on calf problem. In 25 man PL pool as homegrown and made bench but very difficult to be a first-choice sub. FA Cup apps but not q-f. Transferred to Reading in Aug 18.
in '14 - Adrian Colunga - out '15
The Spaniard signed from Getafe on a 2yr contract during Aug transfer window. Fee as undisclosed but as BHA were under FFP rules, we guess it didn't break the bank. 29yo striker was added to line-up with goal-scoring experience at top level in Spain. But went back there on loan to Granada. Failed to make squad and contract went in waste bin.
in '14 - Paddy McCourt - out '15
A N Irish int, who had been on Celtic and Barnsley books, impressed to earn a 1yr contract after being on trial. Joined expanding ranks in m-f and rated as something of an attacking force. Sometimes came on as sub. Went on loan to Notts County.
in '14 - Danny Holla - out '16
The flying 26yo Dutchman with a pedigree from good sides in Holland signed in August for three years. Came with endorsements as a versatile central midfielder capable of picking out a pass. Failed to hold a regular place and left the club in August '16.
in '14 - David Stockdale - out 17 (Championship)
Big signing to fill the vacant keeper position prior to final friendly before Championship kick-off. A first class pro of quality, with Prem experience at Fulham. Penned a 3yr deal as numero uno. 28yo had experience in Prem & Champ's. Was glove-hunted by Albion for big buckskin. Had Antti Niemi as g-k coach and didn't hesitate to join the upright framework of this progressive south coast club between the sticks. 14/15 Stats indicated some flaws as stopper - needed clean sheets! Broke finger - but lost weight! First choice... well, no competition. 15/16 - began to show useful performances as no.1. 16/17 - hoped 13 was the lucky one. Excellent stopper, although a few blunders with feet. Named in all-club Championship team. Runner up as BHA player of the year. Signed on for Birmingham.
in '14 - Chris O'Grady - out '17 (Championship)
Added to the squad in pre-season to fill gap in ranks of strikers. 28yo was previously at Barnsley. Had plenty of apps in lower league with Rotherham, Oldham, Rochdale & Wednesday. Loaned out for a while to Sheff Utd in 14/15 and 15/16 to Forest, also thru 16/17 to Burton. Released prior to BHA playing in the Prem.
in '14 - Aaron Hughes - out '15
Came in July as Sami Hyypia's first signing to boost a depleted squad. 34yo was a very experienced defender. Northern Ireland int and ex-Prem c-d with Newcastle, Villa & Fulham. Hardly figured, even from bench.
in '14 - Nzuzi Toko - out '15
Joined at end of the Oscar Garcia season as p-o squad was due overhaul. Came from Swiss club Grasshoppers where 23yo Congolese had experience in central midfield. Was a U21 and also native DR Congo player. But hardly figured under Sami Hyypia and soon released by Chris Hughton in Jan '15.

Championship Squads 14-17 Back to Top
Falmer Years - 2014-2017 (years 4-6) Championship.
Year4 Squad, 2014 - 2015 - fifth from bottom.
There was a significant change of personnel during and at end of '13/14 term - see Year3 below.
Out - Kuszczak, Brezovan, Hoskins, Rodriguez, Orlandi, Ulloa, Upson, David and Dickenson.
Sami Hyypia became the third BHA manager, in the close season, prior to Albion's fourth campaign at the Amex. In conjunction with chairman Tony Bloom and head of ops David Burke, he had several positions to fill with new players as time ran out through pre-season training.
Keepers - Casper Ankergren, Chris Walton. Defenders - Bruno, Gordon Greer, Lewis Dunk, Inigo Calderon, Adam Chicksen, Vita Maksimenko.
Midfield - Dale Stephens, Andrew Crofts, Kemy Agustien, Jake Forster-Caskey, Rohan Ince. Forwards - Craig Mackail-Smith, Kazenga LuaLua, Solly March, Will Buckley, Shamir Fenelon.
Pre-season; The first player introduced by Burke after abortive play-off s-f was Nzuzi Toko a holding midfielder. He was eventually followed by experienced c-d Aaron Hughes (Hyppia's first signing) and later in time for friendlies, striker Chris O'Grady (Barnsley). Then a big 1mill signing, David Stockdale a keeper from Fulham.
August; After one week, Buckley went to Sunderland. In week2, midfielder Joao Carlos Teixeira (Liverpool) penned a year long loan. Then two academy kids, defender Glen Rea & m-f Charlie Harris, also joined the first team squad. In week3, two midfielders; Danny Holla joined from Holland and Paddy McCourt (Barnsley). Then l-b Joe Bennett (Aston Villa) came in on season-long loan.
In the week prior to Aug window shut, striker Adrian Colunga came from Spain. Also m-f Gary Gardner (Villa) was added on 4mth loan. Then followed Sam Baldock a striker from Bristol City.
In early November Ali Al-Habsi (gk) came in on emg loan from Wigan, also Elliott Bennett returned on loan (Norwich) and c-d Greg Halford (Forest). Before the loan deadline at end of Nov, striker Darren Bent came in for a month from Villa. But CMS & COG went out on loan at the same time.
January; after New Year and Chris Hughton taking charge, striker Leon Best came in on loan from Blackburn. At the transfer window, Beram Kayal arrived from Celtic to bolster midfield. In the loan window, winger Emmanuel Ledesma joined from Middlesbro short term. Also Mustapha Carayol from the same club.

1 Al-Habsi (Gk short loan), 2 Bruno, 3 Greer, 4 Hughes, 5 Dunk, 6 Stephens (injured), 7 Colunga (out on loan), 8 Crofts (injured), 9 Baldock, 10 Agustien, 11 O'Grady, 12 Mackail-Smith, 13 Stockdale (Gk), 14 Calderon, 15 Chicksen, 16 Ankergren (Gk), 17 Teixeira (on loan), 18 Forster-Caskey, 19 Gardner (on short loan) then Best (on loan), 20 McCourt (out on loan), 21 Maksimenko (out on loan), 22 Holla, 23 Fenelon (out on loan), 24 Ince, 25 LuaLua, 26 Rea, 27 March (injured), 28 Toko (left), then Kayal, 29 Harris, 30 Buckley (transferred) then J Bennett (on loan), 31 Walton (Gk), 32 E Bennet (on short loan) then Ledesma (on short loan), 33 Halford (on loan), 34 Carayol (on short loan), 39 Bent (on short loan).

Year5 Squad, 2015 - 2016 Champ's p-os
Out - Mackail-Smith, Hughes, Agustien, McCourt, Maksimenko, Fenelon.
Keepers - Stockdale, Walton - out on loan, Ankergren. Defenders - Bruno, Greer, Dunk, Chicksen, Calderon.
Midfield - Stephens, Crofts, Forster-Caskey, Holla, Ince, Kayal. Forwards - Baldock, O'Grady, LuaLua, March, Colunga.
New signings - Tomer Hemed (Almeria - striker), Liam Rosenior (Hull - fullback), Niki Maenpaa (Venlo - keeper), Gaetan Bong (Wigan - fullback), Vahid Hambo (FC Inter - striker), Jack Harper (Real Madrid - striker), Bobby Zamora (QPR - striker), Uwe Huenemeier (Paderborn - cent def), Jamie Murphy (Sheff Utd - winger), Connor Goldson (Shrewsbury - cent def), Elvis Manu (Feyenoord - striker).
Nov '15 loan window - James Wilson (Man U - striker), Rajiv La Parra (Wolves - winger).
Jan '16 window - Richie Towell (Dundalk - m-f), Liam Ridgewell (Portland - cent -def), Anthony Knockaert (Liege - winger), Steve Sidwell (Stoke - m-f), Henrik Bjordal (Aalesunds - winger), Jonah Ayunga (Dorchester - striker), Jiri Skalak (Mlada Boleslav - striker)

1 Maenpaa (GK), 2 Bruno, 3 Greer, 4 Huenemeier (injured), 5 Dunk, 6 Stephens, 7 Kayal, 8 Crofts (out on loan), 9 Baldock (injured), 10 Hemed, 11 O'Grady (out on loan), 12 Bong (injured), 13 Stockdale (GK), 14 Calderon, 15 Murphy, 16 Ankergren (GK), 17 Goldson, 18 Forster-Caskey (out on loan), 19 Manu (out on loan), 20 March (Injured), 21 Wilson (on loan), 22 Holla, 23 Rosenior (injured), 24 Ince (out on loan), 25 Zamora, 26 Rea (out on loan), 27 Colunga (left), then La Parra (left), then Knockaert, 28 Chicksen (out on loan), 29 Towell, 30 LuaLua, 31 Walton (GK out on loan), 32 , 33 Ridgewell (on loan), 36 Sidwell (on loan), 38 Skalak

Year6 Squad 2016-17 Champ's runners-up
out - Greer, Calderon, Crofts, Chicksen, Zamora, Rea. Holla left after pre-season.
out on loan - O'Grady, Forster-Caskey (transferred), Walton (gk), Manu, LuaLua
new signings - Steve Sidwell (mf - Stoke), Ben Hall (U23, cd - Motherwell), Glenn Murray (striker - Bournemouth loan), Oliver Norwood (mf - Reading).
Youngsters Rob Hunt, Sam Adekugbe (Vancouver loan) and Ben White were added to the squad from U23s.
August; before the transfer window shut, Shane Duffy (c-d - Blackburn) and Sebastian Pocognoli (lb - WBA loan) arrived.
In the Jan window, Forster-Caskey transferred to Charlton, LuaLua went on loan to QPR, Hunt to Oldham & Ince to Swindon. Defender Fikayo Tomori came in on loan from Chelsea, while striker Chuba Akpom arrived on loan from Arsenal. Glenn Murray signed permanently.
At beginning of March cent-def Vegard Forren signed as a stop gap.

1 Maenpaa (gk), 2 Bruno, 3 Bong, 4 Huenemeier, 5 Dunk, 6 Stephens, 7 Kayal, 8 Skalak, 9 Baldock, 10 Hemed, 11 Knockaert, 12 Pocognoli (on loan), 13 Stockdale (gk), 14 Sidwell, 15 Murphy, 16 Ankergren (gk), 17 Murray, 18 Goldson (injured), 19 Manu (loaned), 20 March, 21 Norwood, 22 Holla (left) then Duffy, 23 Rosenior (injured), 24 Ince (loaned), 25 Forren, 26 , 27 Tomori (on loan), 28 Akpom (on loan), 29 Towell, 30 LuaLua (loaned), 42 Hunt (loaned), 43 White, 44 Adekugbe (on loan)

 Back to Top

Oscar Garcia Back to Top
Falmer Years - 2013-14 Championship.
More Spanish influence.
A reserved man by all accounts, 40yo Garcia from Catalonia took Israeli club Maccabi Tel Aviv from no-hopers to champions in fine style during one season there. He was headhunted by BHA and it was an open secret that he would replace Gus Poyet prior to pre-season. Garcia's m.o. was 433 and an exponent of Johan Cruyff's method of winning with Barcelona. He won major hons with them, including 4 La Liga titles as a player.
Supposedly more of a coach than all-round manager, Oscar was quite a taskmaster as motivator and man manager. He was previously youth coach at the Nou Camp, having enjoyed that successful career as a Barca midfielder.
He said, 'my obsession is to attack and have the ball as many times as possible.' Some fans thought the football ponderous & boring but Albion got to another p-o s-f and probably over-achieved with an injury ravaged squad. Oscar Garcia deserved full credit for making a tough season into a launch pad for the future.

Gus Poyet Back to Top
Falmer Years - 2011-13 Championship.
Home from home in city by the sea.
Seagulls Chairman Tony Bloom took over the hot seat when BHA club saviour Dick Knight became Life President in 2009. Tony was a maths wizard and could see the club he long supported, struggling with basic arithmetic at Withdean - so decided to crunch some huge numbers. With the team floundering in League1, Bloom elected to take a calculated risk, by making highly-regarded coach Gustavo Poyet manager - for his very first job as numero uno.
In his initial season '9/10, Poyet laid foundations for a promotion push the following term. Tony soon signed Gus up for much more and Brighton duly strolled to promotion as L1 champions for '10/11, thus further enhancing credentials of the impressive young Uruguayan talent.
Falmer next became home and Poyet spent a few million of Bloom's squad-pot in pre-season of '11/12, with an aim of establishing asap in the Championship at very least. He done good and BHA were not far off play-off places come end of term. On completion of '12/13 Gus had duly taken BHA to a p-o spot. This was the clubs highest placing since before those gory years of the nineties at the Goldstone Ground.
Sensationally Poyet was suspended by Bloom in May, the week after defeat by Crystal Palace in the 2nd leg s-f at the Amex. He was given a hearing by the club, ref breaches of contract but sacked during last week of June just before players started pre-season training. He appealed but the club upheld its original decision. Whatever rights or wrongs prevailed, the guy will be a modern Albion legend. He was a man who spoke directly from the heart and firmly believed in his opinions, irrespective of arousing opposition or for that matter negative publicity.

CHAMPIONSHIP Ins & Outs '11 - '14 Back to Top
Falmer Years - 2011-2014 (seasons 1-3) Championship.
Tomaz Kuszczak - out 2014
keeper; 30yo from Poland signed 2y deal for BHA, second season at Falmer in '12. Ex Man Utd and Polish Int. Came via WBA in 2.1mill deal to MU in 2007. '12/13 - no.1 was in his hands. Looked like the keeper we needed & remained consistent. Mighta commanded six yard box better. '13/14 - v good stopper and coulda been stronger in physical clashes.
Peter Brezovan - out 2014
Keeper; '9/10 - December signing and straight into L1 action. Tall and athletic with good handling and reasonable kicking. Was at Swindon and comfortable with Gus. Very mixed form between good and bad apps. '10/11 L1; Fractured wrist in pre-season out 2 months then on bench. FA Cup goalie and Sub late in lg1 run-in - did ok. '11/12 CHAMPS - some issues apparent before taking hands-on approach at short notice. On bench, done good on late seasonal debut. Kept place with FA Cup run. Held gloves but kinda got beat once too many times. '12/13 - did not make bench early doors. Looked shaky on debut. Out with washing thereafter. Got contract extended - happy as no.2. '13/14 - made rare apps in lieu of TK.
in & out 2014 - David Rodriguez
Striker; came on free at Jan transfer window from Celta Vigo in La Liga. Had over 100 apps and scored 38 goals. Few apps.
Liam Bridcutt - out 2014
Midfield; 21yo initially signed for five months to fill in as defensive cmf. Product of Chelsea youth system and hailed from Reading. '10/11 L1; Second choice as holding m-f. Small bundle of energy and knocked about, got it done A-ok. Quality displays in role. Stunning volley for first pro goal and late match winner. Worthy signing at L1. '11/12 CHAMPS - regular pick for destroyer role but beware yellow peril. Stepped it up. Worked hard but tough to shine in average line-up. Then got loadsa mom awards and top man. 10+ cards. PoS and deserved to be. '12/13 - improved and did so again. Contract extended. Done well and easily held his own. 10 yellows. Scotland call up. PoS award again. '13/14 - coming into prime and a Scot int to boot. Had hernia surgery - groin prob. Club accepted transfer bid by Prem outfit Sunderland.
Adam El-Abd - out 2014
Cent def; Fought his way back into '08/9 L1 side after injury and formation changes. Searched for the hero inside himself and at level. Not first choice and reached crossroads in career. '9/10 L1; Selected by default. Got it together - fighting displays. Signed new deal and appreciated by GP. Returned from injury and Gus really liked him more. '10/11 L1; A-ok and kept shirt. 5 yellows. MoM more than once. Broken nose. Beware the Egyptian - got a goal too. Injured - thigh wound needed stitches. Excellent performances through season. 10 yellow cards - oh dear. Done hamstring but quick recovery. Voted PoY. Fractured foot - out for start of '11/12. CHAMPS - fits in with Latin hard man ethos but could he come back on top of his game? Became regular. Won an Egypt cap. '12/13 - was a revelation under Gus. Did the do and not bad for a guy under six feet tall. Ten yellows. Egypt call up. '13/14 - after an Egypt cap, needed to be first choice at club tho. Got a run of apps in lieu of Greer. Moved permanently to Bristol City.
Ashley Barnes - out 2014
Forward; '9/10 L1 - 20yo target man got in from Plymouth. Scored on debut and did ok as sub. Got more - nice finisher. '10/11 L1; Found it tough and needed to be quicker but goal ratio did improve. Injury niggles. Useful lg1 form and scored as impact player. 20 goal target reached. '11/12 CHAMPS - first choice for strike partner and delivered as sub. Struggled with this standard at times. Sent off - violent conduct. Did variety of roles and also defends. Leading scorer too. '12/13 - hey, Gus says lay off him! Got picked regularly and good in fits and starts. Had to be at best to impress and that meant scoring goals. Sent off twice. Long suspension. Contract extended. '13/14 - is another centre forward these days. Transferred to Burnley.
in 2013 - Kemy Agustien - out 2015
M-f; put pen to paper for 2 years after impressing coaches and scouts. Dutch U21 int who did on-loan spell with Birmingham before ending up at Swansea - 31 apps in Prem. Considered quality by Oscar Garcia. Only made 6+7 lg apps & 4 in cups. Suffered with injuries.
in 2013 - Matt Upson - out 2014
Initially came on loan from Prem-land cast-offs and slotted in easily to hold place in cent-def for a shot at play-offs. Good enough for an old man to be offered a years contract in the very tough Championship. Ex-England hero was expected to show experience against good strikers. First signing of the post-Poyet era. Easily got PoY for season but was snapped up by Leicester. BHA could not compete with Prem clubs.
in 2013 - Fernando Ulloa - out 2014
During the end January window Brighton arranged a transfer with Spanish club Almeria for their Argentine striker (2mill). The 26yo was hailed as the target man we had been searching for. He got nearly one goal in two games and was top scorer in La Liga in last term with 29. On his debut he netted against Arsenal in FAC4 at the Amex. Had played for Castellon in Spain after three clubs in S America. Moved in 2010 to Almeria and got 48 goals in 102 apps. '12/13 - Looked big and awkward & jury out. Then hat trick hero. Took to the English game like an old centre forward. Needed right service. '13/14 - could play off another front man who supports. Straight red for high feet. Carried off - ankle prob. Useful at converting chances. Used in 451 on away trips - tough gig. Went to Leicester for 8million + appearance money. Came back on loan in 2018 PL Jan window as back up striker option.
in 2012 - Stephen Dobbie - out 2013
SD came to Albion at the summer deadline, with the club attempting to get a very competitive squad. The 29yo Glaswegian scored 26 goals from 48 starts for Swansea and Blackpool - 6 from 10 on loan to Seasiders in '11/12. Quite short for a pro at 5ft8, he was not the targetman fans were expecting but knew the score ok at this level and slightly above. Got a three year contract for an undisclosed fee. Gus believed he would fit in and give BHA different attacking options. Oh dear, all wheels came off. He soon went off to Palace on loan and later permanently.
in 2012 - David Lopez - out 2014
Gus had a long day on 31Aug and got in a right-sided midfielder from Athletico Bilbao (La Liga in Spain) late in the evening. 29yo Lopez was not an English speaker but decided to come over after making over 150 apps for two Spanish clubs. He transferred there from Osasuna for six million euros in 2007. He accepted a one year deal at BHA and added quality to m-f positions. Popular with fans. Signed again for another year. Then released.
in 2012 - Andrea Orlandi - out 2014
At the Aug-Sept transfer deadline, Gus swooped for a left-sided creative midfielder he'd been after from Swansea. The fee was undisclosed. Orlandi is Spanish but played most footy in England/Wales for Swans - 72 apps mainly at lev2. 28yo AO joined on a 2year contract, adding to an increasing number of fellow countrymen. He speaks English well and knew the game here, so everything seemed to fit into place - was even a team-mate of Calderon when they were much younger. Made a useful contribution to the squad. Had injury probs.
in 2012 - Andrew Crofts - out 2016
Ex-Albion L1 Captain and midfield dynamo, Crofty left BHA at Withdean in 2010 for Norwich. He returned to slot straight into a Championship team hoping to beat last terms tenth pos. The 28yo from Kent was with Chelsea youth before joining Gillingham as a pro. Russ Slade snapped him up in 2009 at W'dean and he had 44 apps for BHA. There were 68 caps for Canaries and 23 for Wales. AC scored around thirty goals in career to date and useful to add more from midfield at any level. Long term injury probs and shadow of former self but regained fitness. Went on loan to Gillingham to get games.
Tommy Elphick - out 2012
Cent def; made a man of him in 4 terms of torment from third-tier strikers. '9/10 - half decent start but needed to be full on it - sent off for 2 yellows. Started again and got up to speed. Given a shot in the arm by Poyet and responded. Found top frontmen a handful and drifted off them, upped it and ok. PoY candidate and racked up nearly full apps. '10/11 L1; Done good. Dropped then ban for 5Y. Reg FA Cup apps. Got starts in lieu El-Abd and Greer. Done his best - difficult to be regular pick. Injured - torn ankle ligaments. '11/12 CHAMPS - out for season-long injury from second surgery. '12/13 - renewed contract for one year. Had a big job on to be first choice. Went to Bournemouth on eve of season.
in 2011 - Vicente Rodriguez - out 2013
Plucked from the scrapheap of Valencia B team after notching 50 goals from over 300 apps in 11 years for the La Liga outfit. Chatted up by Gus, Tony Bloom and Ken Brown on a flying visit to the Amex from the Med in August. The 30yo Spaniard liked what he saw and said, 'si si senores.' A Spanish International with forty caps and been involved in Champions League and UEFA Cup. Potentially a massive return for the club from a proven Euro class act. Soon injured and spent a long time on sidelines. However Gus got him fit again for 2012 and we saw just what a class act we'd available. Busy and inventive but too clever by half for squad to read him. Further injuries severely curtailed second season apps. His potential was unused.
in 2011 - Craig Mackail-Smith - out 2015
CM-S was with Peterboro, who got to the Championship (via L1 p-o's) care of his 35 goals in '10/11. Gus wanted him and at 27 was considered in his prime - Scottish cap to boot. BHA passed over 2.5 million in July to Posh, to bust our spending record wide open. CM-S was at London Road for four years and netted 80 goals in 185 apps. Previously he was with Dag&Red in the Conference - 38 goals from 106 apps. Craig had several interested parties for his services but he chose Brighton and Gus Poyet is the reason why - oh and we got a new stadium too. Didn't have the most productive of first campaigns, although maintained fitness throughout. Sometimes sub and asked to play wide but best facing goal and chasing. Injury in second year at the Amex prevented him getting back to form of old. Made 79+28 lg apps, 8+5 in cups and scored 21+3 goals.
in 2011 - Will Buckley - out 2014
Spending one million pounds in June of the close season prior to the Amex opening, meant BHA gained our most expensive signing ever. Watford got the wad but 22yo Buckley had previous with Rochdale. Will could play as a winger or creative midfielder, scoring in either role. He didn't hesitate to sign for 3 years, remembering how Albion looked like a proper lev2 outfit away at Watford in the FA Cup of '10/11. Bit of a goal-getter and supersub '11/12. Couldn't hold a regular place and some average away performances to boot. Hamstring problems reduced the number of apps in second year. '12/13 - repayed some of big fee. But had more to offer. Kinda lost scoring touch. '13/14 - mighta aimed to be new Vicente. Oh dear, perhaps a hamstrung step too far. '14/15 - after day1 went to Sunderland for 2.5mill or so.
in 2011 - Will Hoskins - out 2014
During the '10/11 season, League1 leaders Albion went to Bristol Rovers and would have won 0-4 but for Will Hoskins. He scored twice for the West Country club and although they went down to Lg2, he netted twenty goals that season. It came a no surprise when Gus Poyet got him for Seagulls straight away, with a 500k wedge, rising to 800k if he did the biz. WH had experience at Watford and also been on loan to Forest and Millwall. Made scant apps '11/12 and went on loan to Sheff Utd. The following year he busted a knee and that finished it. Released following many injury probs.
in 2011 - Craig Noone - out 2012
New Year '11 transfer window signing from Plymouth. Got 3 year contract and about 300k spent. 23yo from Merseyside played non-league at Stockport. Two footed and played on either flank. Not too many regular apps in last two terms. Liked to dribble thru and cut inside. Listened to Gus and changed impulsive ways. Came off bench to add flair. Something of a supersub game changer and popular with fans. Massive step up in Championship but coped. Needed end product for all that dribbling. Regular sub when not starting. Had hamstring probs. Needed more apps. Signed for Cardiff for supposed seven figure sum.

Championship Squads 11-14 Back to Top
Falmer Years - 2011-2014 (years 1-3)
A new beginning at the Amex in the Championship.
Year1 Squad, 2011 - 2012 - mid table finish.
From the previous lg1 title-winning squad, Gus Poyet retained -
keepers, Casper Ankergren, Peter Brezovan, Michael Poke and Mitch Walker. Club Captain Gordon Greer, long serving pair Tommy Elphick and Adam El-Abd (both injured), together with wonder-kid Lewis Dunk and youngster Steve Cook, made up heart of defence. The champions lg1 full-backs, Inigo Calderon and Marcos Painter were again first choices, supported initially by asst mngr Mauricio Taricco.
In cent midfield, Gary Dicker, Liam Bridcutt and Matt Sparrow were rejoined by old hand Alan Navarro. On the wings, Craig Noone and Jamie Smith were bolstered by LuaLua re-signing (on loan from Newcastle) and million pound man Will Buckley via Watford. Up front, Gus spent money on Will Hoskins (Bristol R 500k) and Craig Mackail-Smith (Peterboro 2.5mill) to assist Ashley Barnes.
August; Romain Vincelot, a utility player, came in from Dag&Red. Just into the new season, GP signed playmaker Ryan Harley care of Swansea.
At end of August, Gus got Vicente Rodriguez on a free from Valencia - a huge result for an experienced big name from Spain.
Toward end of October, Poyet got Chilean international defender Gonzalo Jara Reyes on short loan from West Brom. Next obtained services of veteran keeper Steve Harper from Newcastle on short loan. Soon after, striker Billy Paynter loaned to us via Leeds. LuaLua signed permanently in November.
For 2012 Gus got goalie David Gonzalez (ex-Man C) on a free. Just before the Jan 2012 transfer widow shut, target-man Sam Vokes appeared on loan from Wolves. Jara Reyes returned and also fullback Joe Mattock came in on loan from WBA. During February, Gus swooped for Man City m-f pair, Abdul Razak and Gai Assulin on loan to bolster quality options for selection.
In the development squad, Ex-Spurs youth teamer, Yaser Kasim, Norwegian Torbjorn Agdestein and U18 star Jake Forster-Caskey were now lining up with Dutch youngster Roland Bergkamp. Others to make the grade included Grant Hall, ex-Chelsea pair Anton Rodgers and Ben Sampayo, plus George Barker. At New Year, youngster Ben Dickenson came in from Dorchester.

1 Brezovan (gk), 2 Mattock (on loan), 3 Greer, 4 Elphick (injured), 5 Dunk, 6 El-Abd, 7 Hoskins (loaned), 8 Navarro, 9 Barnes, 10 Sparrow, 11 Noone, 12 Mackail-Smith, 13 Paynter (on loan) then Assulin (o-l), 14 Calderon, 15 Vicente Rodriguez, 16 Ankergren (gk), 17 Harley, 18 Dicker (injured), 19 Poke (gk loaned), 20 Vincelot, 21 Harper (o-l gk) then Gonzalez (gk) , 22 Painter (injured), 23 Agdestein, 24 Smith (left) then Vokes (o-l), 25 LuaLua, 26 Bridcutt (PoY), 27 Taricco, 28 Cook (transferred) then Razak (o-l), 29 Bergkamp (loaned), 30 Buckley, 31 Hall, 32 Kasim, 33 Barker, 34 Sampayo, 35 Forster-Caskey, 36 Jara Reyes (on loan), 37 Walker (gk), 38 , 39 Dickenson, 44 Rodgers.

Year2 Squad, 2012 - 2013 Champ's p-os
Many players already had ongoing contracts so Poyet only released -
Navarro and keepers, Poke, Walker and Gonzalez.
In the close season he got Polish g-k Tomasz Kuszczak (ex Man U) and Spanish fullback Bruno Saltor Grau (ex Valencia). Then at pre-season, left back Wayne Bridge (Man C) arrived for season loan.
During early August, Andrew Crofts returned from Norwich. Yaser Kasim, Jake Forster-Caskey and Roland Bergkamp went out on loan. After friendlies finished Tommy Elphick transferred to Bournemouth and Grant Hall signed for Spurs.
At Aug xfer window Craig Noone went to Cardiff. But Gus got four in; 3 midfielders - Andrea Orlandi (Swansea), David Lopez (Bilbao) and Dean Hammond (loan So'ton). He also got striker Stephen Dobbie (Swansea).
In new year Matt Sparrow signed for Crawley. Before the '13 xfer window shut, target-man Leonardo Ulloa signed from Almeria in Spain. On the last day, cent-def Matthew Upson arrived on loan from Stoke

1 Brezovan (gk), 2 Bruno, 3 Greer, 4 Elphick (transfer) then Hammond (loan), 5 Dunk, 6 El-Abd, 7 Hoskins (injured), 8 Crofts, 9 Barnes (banned), 10 Sparrow (left) then Dobbie, 11 Noone (transfer) then Orlandi, 12 Mackail-Smith (injured), 13 , 14 Calderon, 15 Vicente (injured), 16 Ankergren (gk), 17 Harley (loaned), 18 Dicker, 19 Ulloa, 20 Vincelot (left) then Upson (loan), 21 David Lopez, 22 Painter (injured/loaned), 23 Agdestein, 24 , 25 LuaLua, 26 Bridcutt (PoS), 27 , 28 Bridge (loan), 29 Kuszczak (gk), 30 Buckley, 33 Barker (loaned), 35 Forster-Caskey, 38 Dickenson (loaned)

Year3 Squad, 2013 - 14 Champ's p-os
At end of '12/13 Vicente, Painter and Dicker were released. El-Abd signed a new contract and eventually Lopez did too. Upson got a year's deal.
David Burke (Head of Ops) signed Adam Chicksen a 21yo left back prospect from MK Dons. In pre-season m-f Kemy Agustien came here on a free from Swansea. Several lads were included from the dev squad. For first home game, m-f Keith Andrews signed on-loan from Bolton. Later Stephen Ward (lb) also came on-loan from Wolves.
Before close of the Aug loan window, winger Craig Conway signed from Cardiff until end '13. An emergency loan for a striker gotten in Leroy Lita (Swansea) in mid October.
During Jan '14, Barnes, El-Abd & Maksimenko transferred and striker Jonathan Obika (Spurs) came in on loan. Before the window closed Bridcutt also transferred. M-f Dale Stephens signed from Charlton, along with striker David Rodriguez out of La Liga. Before end of Feb, Jesse Lingard signed on loan from Man Utd.

g-k; 29 Kuszczak, 1 Brezovan, 16 Ankergren. def; 2 Bruno, 14 Calderon, 5 Dunk, 3 Greer, 6 El-Abd (left), 20 Upson, 15 Chicksen, 28 Maksimenko (left), 17 Ward (loan). m-f; 8 Crofts (injured), 11 Orlandi, 21 Lopez, 26 Bridcutt (left), 10 Agustien, 18 Forster-Caskey, 38 Ince, 4 Andrews (loan). strikers; 7 Hoskins, 12 Mackail-Smith, 19 Ulloa, 9 Barnes (left), 30 Buckley, 25 LuaLua, 27 March, 22 Barker then Obika, 24 Dickenson, 23 Conway (loan), 35 Lingard (loan), 44 Lita (loan)

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CHAMPIONSHIP Stats Back to Top
Falmer Years - 2011-17 Championship.
'16/17 - Per Quarter Stats.
Q4 - H = 4 0 1, A = 3 1 2 . Qtr totals 22 pts, F16 A9 gd+7. 4 clean-shts and 3 fts. 2.00pt/gm. 4 home games unbeaten run.
Q3 - H = 4 1 1, A = 2 1 3 . Qtr totals 20 pts, F20 A17 gd+3. 3 clean-shts and 2 fts. 1.66pt/gm. 5 home games unbeaten run.
Q2 - H = 5 1 0, A = 4 1 0 . Qtr totals 29pts, F22 A5 gd+17. 7 clean-shts and 1 fts. 2.63pt/gm. 6 home games unbeaten run.
Q1 - H = 4 1 1, A = 2 3 1 . Qtr totals 22pts, F16 A9 gd+7. 7 clean-shts and 4 fts. 1.83pt/gm. 3 home games unbeaten run.
Q+ - H = 17 3 3, A = 11 6 6. Full total 93pt, F74 A40 gd=+34. 21 clean-shts and 10 fts. 2.02pt/gm

'15/16 - Per Quarter Stats.
Q4 - H = 3 3 0, A = 4 1 0 . Qtr totals 25 pts, F23 A8 gd+15. 4 clean-shts and 1 fts. 2.27pt/gm. 6 home games unbeaten run.
Q3 - H = 4 0 2, A = 2 2 2 . Qtr totals 20 pts, F18 A11 gd+7. 6 clean-shts and 5 fts. 1.67pt/gm. 4 home games unbeaten run.
Q2 - H = 3 1 1, A = 0 6 0 . Qtr totals 16pts, F13 A13 gd0. 3 clean-shts and 4 fts. 1.45pt/gm. 4 home games unbeaten run.
Q1 - H = 5 1 0, A = 3 3 0 . Qtr totals 28pts, F18 A10 gd+8. 4 clean-shts and 1 fts. 2.33pt/gm. 6 home games unbeaten run.
Q+ - H = 15 5 3, A = 9 12 2. Full total 89pts, F72 A42 gd=+30. 17 clean-shts and 11fts. 1.93pt/gm

'14/15 - Per Quarter Stats.
Q4 - H = 0 2 3, A = 1 2 3 . Qtr totals 7 pts, F4 A11 gd-7. 4 clean-shts and 7 fts. 0.63 pt/gm. 1 home game unbeaten run.
Q3 - H = 4 0 2, A = 2 2 2 . Qtr totals 20pts, F16 A11 gd+5. 6 clean-shts and 5 fts. 1.66pt/gm. 3 home games unbeaten run.
Q2 - H = 1 3 2, A = 0 3 2 . Qtr totals 9pts, F13 A18 gd-5. 1 clean-shts and 2 fts. 0.81pt/gm. 3 home games unbeaten run.
Q1 - H = 1 3 2, A = 1 2 3 . Qtr totals 11pts, F11 A14 gd-3. 3 clean-shts and 5 fts. 0.91pt/gm. 4 home games unbeaten run.
Q+ - H = 6 8 9, A = 4 9 10. Full total 47pts, F44 A54 gd=-10. 14 clean-shts and 19fts. 1.02pt/gm

'13/14 - Per Quarter Stats.
Q4 - H = 2 1 2, A = 2 3 1. Qtr totals 16 pts, F16 A12 gd+4. 3 clean-shts and 4 fts. 1.45 pt/gm. 3 home games unbeaten run.
Q3 - H = 4 2 1, A = 2 1 2. Qtr totals 21 pts, F11 A7 gd+4. 7 clean-shts and 3 fts. 1.75pt/gm. 4 home games unbeaten run.
Q2 - H = 2 2 1, A = 4 1 1. Qtr totals 21 pts, F17 A9 gd+8. 5 clean-shts and 1 fts. 1.90 pt/gm. 2 home games unbeaten run.
Q1 - H = 2 2 2, A = 1 3 2. Qtr totals 14 pts, F11 A12 gd=-1. 5 clean-shts and 4 fts. 1.16 pt/gm. 4 home games unbeaten run.
Q+ - H = 10 7 6, A = 9 8 6. Full total 72pts, F55 A40 gd=+15. 20 clean-shts and 12fts. 1.56pt/gm

'12/13 - Per Quarter Stats.
Q4 - H = 3 2 0, A = 2 2 2. Qtr totals 19 pts, F19 A8 gd+11. 5 clean-shts and 3 fts. 1.72 pt/gm. 5 home games unbeaten run.
Q3 - H = 4 1 1, A = 2 3 1. Qtr totals 22 pts, F19 A12 gd+7. 5 clean-shts and 1 fts. 1.83 pt/gm. 5 home games unbeaten run.
Q2 - H = 2 4 0, A = 1 3 1. Qtr totals 16 pts, F16 A15 gd+1. 3 clean-shts and 2 fts. 1.45 pt/gm. 6 home games unbeaten run.
Q1 - H = 2 2 2, A = 3 1 2. Qtr totals 18 pts, F15 A8 gd=+7. 4 clean-shts and 6 fts. 1.50 pt/gm. 3 home games unbeaten run.
Q+ - H = 11 9 3, A = 8 9 6. Full total 75pts, F69 A43 gd=+26. 17 clean-shts and 12fts. 1.63pt/gm

'11/12 - Per Quarter Stats.
Q4 - H = 2 3 1, A = 0 2 3. Qtr totals 11 pts, F10 A16 gd=-6. 3 clean-shts and 4 fts. 1.00 pt/gm. 3 home games unbeaten run.
Q3 - H = 4 2 0, A = 2 3 1. Qtr totals 23 pts, F19 A10 gd=+9 5 clean-shts and 2 fts. 1.91 pt/gm. 6 home games unbeaten run.
Q2 - H = 3 0 2, A = 1 1 4. Qtr totals 13 pts, F06 A11 gd=-5. 4 clean-shts and 7 fts. 1.18 pt/gm. 3 home games unbeaten run.
Q1 - H = 2 3 1, A = 3 1 2. Qtr totals 19 pts, F17 A15 gd+2. 4 clean-shts and 2 fts. 1.58 pt/gm. 4 home games unbeaten run.
Q+ - H = 11 8 4, A = 6 7 10. Full total 66pts, F52 A52 gd=0. 16 clean-shts and 15fts. 1.43pt/gm.

CUP Competitions Back to Top
Falmer Years - 2011-19
Yearly statistical record.
FA Cup -
19 r3 B'mouth A 5/1/19 w 1-3 ~ Knockaert, Bissouma, Andone. r4 West Brom H 26/1 0-0, A 6/2 w 1-3 aet ~ Andone, Murray 2. r5 Derby H 16/2 w 2-1 ~ Knockaert, Locadia. q-f Millwall A 17/3 w 4-5 pens 2-2 aet ~ Locadia, March. s-f Man City Wembley 6/4 l 1-0.
'18 r3 Palace H 8/1/18 w 2-1 ~ Stephens, Murray, r4 Middlesbro A 27/1 w 0-1 ~ Murray, r5 Coventry H 17/2 w 3-1 ~ Locadia, Goldson, Ulloa, q-f Man Utd A 17/3 l 2-0
'17 r3 MK Dons H 7/1/17 w 2-0 ~ Kayal, Hemed, r4 Lincoln A 28/1 l 3-1 ~ Towell
'16 r3 Hull A 9/1/16 l 1-0
'15 r3 Brentford A 3/1/15 w 2-0 ~ Dunk, O'Grady, r4 Arsenal H 24/1l 2-3 ~ O'Grady, Baldock
'14 r3 Reading H 5/1/14 w 1-0 ~ Crofts, r4 Port Vale A 25/1 w 3-1 ~ Ince, March, Obika, r5 Hull H 17/2 d 1-1 ~ Ulloa, r5r A 24/2 l 2-1 ~ Ulloa
'13 r3 Newcastle H 5/1/13 w 2-0 ~ Orlandi, Hoskins, r4 Arsenal H 26/1 l 2-3 ~ Barnes, Ulloa
'12 r3 Wrexham H 7/1/12 d 1-1 ~ Forster-Caskey, r3r Wrexham A 18/1 d 1-1 ~ Barnes - BHA win 5-4 on pens aet, r4 Newcastle H 28/1 w 1-0 ~ Buckley, r5 Liverpool A 18/2 l 6-1 ~ LuaLua

EFL Cup -
18 r2 Southampton H 28/8/18 l 0-1
'17 r2 Barnet H 22/8/17 w 1-0 ~ Tilley, r3 Bournemouth A 19/9 l 1-0
'16 r1 Colchester H 9/8/16 w 4-0 ~ Murphy 2, Baldock, Manu, r2 Oxford A 23/8 w 2-4 ~ Adekugbe, LuaLua, Manu, Hemed, r3 Reading H 20/9 l 1-2 ~ Hemed
'15 r1 Southend A 11/8/15 w 0-1 ~ LuaLua (90+3), r2 Walsall A 25/8 l 2-1 ~ Forster-Caskey (39)
'14 r1 Cheltenham H 12/8/14 w 2-0 ~ Dunk (79), Mackail-Smith (90), r2 Swindon A 26/8 w 2-4 aet ~ Ince (10), Colunga (95), F-C 2 (pens 100, 120), r3 Burton Albion A 24/9 w 0-3 ~ Ince (18), LuaLua (37), CMS (65), r4 Tottenham A 28/10 l 2-0
'13 r1 Newport H 6/8/13 l 1-3 aet ~ Barnes (18)
'12 r1 Swindon A 14/8/12 l 3-0
'11 r1 Gillingham H 9/8/11 w 1-0 ~ Barnes (67 pen), r2 Sunderland H 23/8 w 1-0 aet ~ Mackail-Smith (96), r3 Liverpool H 21/9 l 1-2 ~ Barnes (90 pen)

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Withdean Managers Back to Top
WITHDEAN ERA 1999 - 2011
Chronological Background
Apr 1999 - Oct 2001 ~ Micky Adams
Oct 2001 - May 2002 ~ Peter Taylor
July 2002 - Oct 2002 ~ Martin Hinshelwood
Oct 2002 - Sep 2003 ~ Steve Coppell
Nov 2003 - Sep 2006 ~ Mark McGhee
Sep 2006 - May 2008 ~ Dean Wilkins
May 2008 - Feb 2009 ~ Micky Adams
Mar 2009 - Oct 2009 ~ Russell Slade
Nov 2009 - May 2011 ~ Gus Poyet

There was a local south-coast derby on a Tuesday night in 2006, when Bournemouth came to town. The first time they visited in the 'modern' Withdean era was almost exactly five years before in 2001, while the world recovered from 9/11 and realised its implications. By coincidence it was also Brighton & Hove Albion's selective Centenary Match. Brighton duly won, to cement their intention to make a mark on history and attempt to gain a second consecutive promotion in three years at W'dean. Three games later Micky ADAMS quit as manager, to jump two levels instead of just one small step.
Peter TAYLOR bridged that gap but subsequently failed to take a giant quantum leap. A year later 2002, Martin HINSHELWOOD was about to be relieved of duties by Dick Knight after eight losses on the bounce, with a 'ten and out' limit imminent. Two years on from actually achieving 100 years history, by 2003 Albion were back in div2 (league 1) having further; lost those two 'new' bosses, had an abortive initiation to div1 (Championship) in '02/3 and were now about to wave goodbye to Steve COPPELL. Thus changing their third short-term manager in quick succession. September is remembered as the month war broke out in 1939 but for this 21st century equivalent, progress "in our time" was getting a tad ridiculous.
By the second coming of Bournemouth to our super sports complex in Feb '04, BHA was well on the way to reach a place in div2 play-offs. A 3-0 home victory certainly floated our boat. We had by then lashed Mark McGHEE to the helm and he steered a straight course to the Millennium Stadium.
Another three years went by and following a second sinking from the Championship and indifferent form in League 1, Brighton repeated their September phobia and dispensed with Mr McGhee's captaincy. Dean WILKINS with no experience came straight in for bulk of '06/7 and hey, it was a learning curve alright. He done fairly good in '07/8 just failing to reach League1 p-os.
But failure was subjective in others' eyes - for '08/9 Micky ADAMS returned, with an agenda and a plan of his office at Falmer. Oh dear, he only lasted 9 months. Russell SLADE was left to pick up the pieces from Mar '09 and keep us up in League1. He did too on the last day and got a contract to boot. Unfortunately '9/10 started as a mare and RS was gone in 8 months total.
First season chairman Tony Bloom, sifted a huge mail bag in Nov '09 and for his second appointment, gave Gus POYET his first manager's job. GP moved Albion into mid table mediocrity and set about putting plans into action for that last season at Withdean in '10/11. A couple of months into the season Albion hit top of the table and went on to gain promotion and then the league1 title with four fixtures to go.

Y L Sesn Pt Po Mangr
1 2 99/0 67 11 . Adams
2 2 00/1 92 1(P) Adams - champions
3 1 01/2 90 1(P) Adams/Taylor - champions
4 C 02/3 45 23 . Hinshelwood/Coppell - rel
5 1 03/4 77 4(P) Coppell/McGhee - play-off winners
6 C 04/5 51 20 . McGhee
7 C 05/6 38 24 . McGhee - rel
8 1 06/7 52 18 . McGhee/Wilkins
9 1 07/8 69 07 . Wilkins
10 1 8/9 52 16 . Adams/Slade
11 1 9/10 59 13 Slade/Poyet
12 1 10/11 95 1(P) Poyet - champions

Y1-3 Micky Adams & Peter Taylor - League Two & One.
Years 1-3 were sensational when seen in the light of a decade of playing league football at a place like Withdean sports complex. Adams first sought consistency where previously this had not been possible at the Goldstone and Priestfield. BHA's homecoming and new squad began a process of steady improvement in standard, based on what had gone before in lg2 (div3). In 99/0 after a useful opening 3 months, things slipped over the winter period as we bobbed about adrift in mid table. A late unbeaten run to end of first season, lifted the club from anonimity to mediocrity. The following two terms can conventionally be considered successful for Brighton. So much that an incredible rare double promotion was achieved. In 00/1 Adams immediately kicked off a promo push with an enhanced skillful side. Consistency was maintained until gaining silverware as champions in Albion's centenary year. 01/2 started in similar vein in lg1 (div2), initially launched by Adams before he left for kudos of the Premiership. Peter Taylor took over and the challenge continued somewhat seamlessly. It was business as usual as Taylor matched Adams stats in back-back fashion.

Y4 Martin Hinshelwood & Steve Coppell - Championship
With Taylor declining to attempt a shot at Championship level (div1), Hinshelwood gave it a try for year4. But attempting to establish a team at higher standard proved difficult in 02/3. There was a long losing run and Coppell stepped into the breach but was unable to save us from relegation, although he tried hard enough. The recognised 50 point survival target unfortunately was not reached. There was a feeling of hard luck that prevailed in denying consolidation afterall. Nevertheless a precedent had been set in doggedly competing at this level.

Y5-7 Mark McGhee - League One & Championship.
There was a positive beginning to year5 when Coppell bettered Adams respective stats at lower league in 03/4 before likewise leaving for superior status. Mark McGhee arrived, got through a tough mid season and kept us in the hunt for a play-off place. He almost matched Adams/Taylor's credentials as his luck held during the run-in and knockout phases. It was an unbelievable day of emotion at the Millennium Stadium. In 04/5 McGhee's year6 return to the Championship went much along lines of Adams inaugural year1 until tailing off, to assume a drop zone contest of Coppell's year4. Albion clung on to tier two this term, snatching survival at the death - thus claiming a second life. In 05/6 under pressure McGhee's year7 went from bad to worse - down, enough said.
For 06/7 there was a weekend lg1 visit to south London in Sept 2006, thankfully short in terms of nationwide away trips because appearing quite a bit on fixture lists was Millwall. We'd been there a lot during recent seasons, which also brought mixed memories flooding into our once-upon-a-time manager's aching head. South he came, in the year 2000 to Millwall and in that new beginning, created heaven and then it became hell. He took them up to division 1 and on to play-offs but crowd trouble meant imposed restrictions at the Den, when sky high gates fell to meagre on rocky earth. Mr McGhee was under enforced gas pressure, as imposed Premiership impossibilities simmered on a low rear burner. The following season, he moved down to Brighton in 2003 and took us back into the Championship alongside Millwall again. Both clubs dropped into familiar League1 surroundings by 2006 and Mr McGhee was once more feeling pressurised.
Dick Knight appointed Mark McGhee, hoping he could make new city boys Brighton a regular Championship side, like he had with our neighbours in the capital and one enduring life with the Lions. Our new manager responded with a defensive, 'there is no magic wand'. This no nonsense Glaswegian had a very broad playing and managing experience, also saying, 'I don't want to be known as a Second Division specialist'. McGhee arrived here after long deliberation and not as a knee jerk reaction to wanting a job. By own admission, he was prepared to give 100% but only signed for two years initially, as a sort of pre-nuptial honeymoon period. Those opening games at lesser standard for our gritty Scots Boss were, in footy speak a 'mare. He added to the squad immediately and held a doctrine of blooding young players considered of pro ability. His aim was to finish in the top two. It didn't happen quite that way but a prominent Youth Policy flourished during two subsequent years ('04-'06) in the Championship. However establishment there stalled, as things went badly wrong towards that disappointing end to our last Champ's season. Even a 1st of April win at lowly Millwall was merely celebrated as another bizarre event, although it could be seen just what youth, pace, enthusiasm and commitment might eventually achieve.
The '06/7 season started with a below average assessment and again Mr McGhee was feeling a squeeze. He asked for a degree of tolerance from Brighton fans, who gave him a tongue lashing on seeing the third consecutive defeat in six. 'We have a very young squad, who need time to develop and aren't suddenly going to turn up experienced and knowing the ropes'. So, based on form thus far, no inspiring talk of a 'top two finish' or presumably not League1 er, specialism either. 'The only players available to me beyond the 16 were two others, neither of whom featured before'. Well, BHA had become a selling club and by definition 'profits' by remaining small and turning over talent - including those not reaching McGhee's supposed quality test for attitude, seemingly in which he did specialise. So goal posts appeared to get moved since progressive days of three years before, when he stated, 'I've come here to be at the top end of the game again'. Brighton fans very much welcomed a return to such an ambitious program that desperately needed to boost this club and yes, it all kicked off on a Saturday in Docklands. However, McGhee was sacked on the Friday before, along with assistant Bob Booker.

Y8-9 Dean Wilkins - League One.
While taking over for 06/7, our 6th manager in 8 years faced a huge task ahead. He probably did ok to settle for a less than average end to that inconsistent season. In his second term of management, Dean Wilkins guided Brighton to just outside League1 play-offs for '07/8. He had taken over from Mark McGhee in September 2006, when unrest among fans and unease with the squad prompted the BHA board into action. Wilkins had beforehand been youth team manager and coached more than one very successful side of lads to prominence in their regional set-up and recognition when against Academy outfits in the Cup. Many of his various under 18s from several annual intakes became professionals at this club. These kids and a few home-bred youngsters from previous regular scholarships, were duly drafted in to attempt a difficult challenge - reaching p-os in a tough third tier. In a year of under achievement, everybody learnt a lot about basic grass-roots footy in that division. Expectation levels rose for 2007 but unfortunately, developing an integrated group became somewhat disjointed with a series of transfers at the January 2008 window. That Wilkins steered a revised and patched-up team to within touching distance of k-o stages is to his immense credit. You couldn't hold it against boyish blue & white that they fell short. There was some comment as to DW's square shape in a round hole and not merely on the pitch. A 10 man cull of Albion's squad at end of an encouraging season received much criticism from fans and fringe players alike. Supposedly Dean Wilkins was not the most adaptable in human resources and media involvement. His chairman and in many respects demanding boss, dealt with player negotiations and of course their associated agents. It all became a process two steps removed from face to face on green grass. Wilkins still had backers, while McGhee endured detractors after perceived failure to consolidate at higher level. Twenty months after starting out down the road, steering a football club to anticipated destinations, Wilkins found he too had run out of room to manoeuvre.

Y10-12 Micky Adams, Russell Slade & Gus Poyet - League One.
In an end of season blaze of publicity, Dick Knight installed Micky Adams as his 'new' manager for '08/9. Wilkins had got BHA to 7th place in '07/8, which some regarded as sufficient to expect a p-o challenge next term. You can imagine just how big the E-word was by pre-season, when Virgo and other ex-Champ's players arrived to boost Adams inherited squad. But following a reasonable start, form tailed off, especially at W'dean where it became a continual mare. Knight stood by his man when coming under criticism from fans as Albion slid downwards. DK did the biz again in Jan '09 transfer window to help try to solve injury and other squad problems. But before end of February, Adams left our club by mutual consent with B'ton in 21st place, still struggling at home and threatened by relegation. Did he jump or was he pushed?
Russell Slade came in and orchestrated the great escape, by taking things to the final fixture to avoid falling back into the drop zone. He became a legend in his own run-in. Dick Knight was a relieved man and all. He in turn became an old ledg when 'promoted' to President when Tony Bloom got to be chairman in May '09.
But it was same old in '9/10 and Slade's new squad were just as poor results-wise as 12 months ago. At the end of October '09 Slade, along with White & Booker were all sacked by Bloom. Big punter Tony thought he held a useful hand and the ace in this pack turned out to be Gus Poyet. He was a pukka coach but very new to management when taking over in Nov '09. Poyet set about changing Albion's style from long ball to footy on the floor but it took a while for the peseta to drop. Eventually a blend of Slade signings and new on-loan recruits got to do the biz. A mid table finish formed a foundation to push on for better things in '10/11. Gus revolutionised the way Albion played during our final term at Withdean. Most people thought it was the best performances since Goldstone glory years and took BHA to top of league1 from merely eight games played. It stayed like that through mid season and come the run-in, Brighton had run away with this division to achieve promotion as L1 title winners.

Withdean Coaches Back to Top
WITHDEAN ERA from 1999.
Y2k -'08 Dean Wilkins & Dean White -'09 Leagues Two & One, Championship.
More speculation and serial September sensation in the denes of Sussex during 2006 - Dean & Dean were still awaiting their first home win! We supposed this small blip in an otherwise winning sequence would soon be rectified, to register complete satisfaction on any given Saturday. Their new partnership bridged a six year gap stretching back to the end of September 2000. On that proverbial 'well I never did' football merry-go-round, Withdean was 'sold out' for a first time. Micky Adams was shortly to appoint Bob Booker as his new assistant and also Dean White as boss of reserves. But in Sept '06 B'fans said, 'thank you Bob' for guiding, advising and generally looking after so many BHA managers and players in the interim. Our new caretaker Dean Wilkins, had previously been kicking a ball about at Worthing, Crawley and Bognor before returning to Brighton as Youth Team Coach in pre-season of 1998. As a 21yo Dean left QPR, joined BHA and went out on loan to er, LO. He then ended up in the Netherlands for three years, finally signing again for Brighton in 1987. It was a kind of arse about face and definitely a little bit double Dutch to boot. Adams brought Dean White to the club to tap into his non-league knowledge and experience, thus trying to exploit any local talent to be found in and around the county. On May Bank Holiday 2000, BHA reserves had played Hastings Town, managed by White and won the Sussex Senior Cup via a penalty shoot-out. Fiesty Adams gave away lucky winners champagne to his future 2nds coach and Chief Scout - keeping Dean in mind for a professional post at Brighton and subsequently much more bubbly. Dean White became Wilkins assistant when the former Youth coach took over from Mark McGhee in September 2006. White was also asst in Micky Adams second spell from May 2008 and took over briefly as caretaker mngr in Feb '09. He said, 'I've enough knowledge to know what's needed. I feel as though I've done a good job here. I live in Hastings, this is my local team and will give it absolutely everything. We've worked to keep this club going forward.' Dean White was sacked by Tony Bloom in October 2009.

Bob Booker Y2k - '06 & '08 - '09 Leagues Two & One, Championship.
Returning to the club in July 2008 but as Reserve Team Coach, Booker said, 'this feels like I'm coming home. We all muck in together.' When Micky Adams first brought Bob on-board as Assistant in October 2000, Dean White had also just arrived to do the 2nd eleven job. Previously Alan Cork had been asst mgnr and ex-Albion player Ian Culverhouse was in charge of the stiffs. Cork joined Cardiff shortly after a visit to the Welsh outfit, where his old Wimbledon Crazy Gang pals Bobby Gould and Sam Hammam were in residence. It was probably an offer he couldn't refuse. Alan said, 'it was like leaving my brother to go back to my father'. Booker returned to the fold with Adams second revolution after Dean Wilkins declined demotion to become 1st eleven coach and another ex-Albion man, Ian Chapman resigned from that post in sympathy of management 'restructuring'. Bob held the gofar job under Taylor, Hinshelwood, Coppell and McGhee and had spells as caretaker mngr. He saw the back-back title years, Millennium Stadium triumph and also Championship struggles in 2004-2006. Perhaps it was a surprise when shown the door with Mark McGhee. For a while Booker scouted for Sheff U, his old club where he'd been a legend but stayed close to and in Sussex life and football. He said, 'I will get in there and play my part as I did before'. But things went from bad to worse during Adams second coming and Bob was again in a caretaker role when Adams went in Feb '09. Booker for his pains was sacked a second time, in Oct '09 when Russ Slade also departed BHA, as part of Tony Blooms big club mission. Bob was expected to join Micky Adams and original BHA Withdean era assistant Alan Cork, at Sheff Utd from beginning of 2011.

'09 - '11 Revolution2 & 3 continued - League One.
Tony Godden was confirmed as g-k coach, after replacing Paul Crichton during '08/9 season. He was a WBA and Chelsea custodian who as a reaction, took the dive to save his career. Crichton had previously replaced John Keeley, who went to Portsmouth as Academy gk coach in 2007. Keeley made first team gk coach when Pompey had financial troubles and dropped out of the Prem.
Mal Stuart retired from his very long-served post as physio, to be replaced by Jim Joyce. He'd been around at Yeovil, So'ton and Aldershot. He was also joined by ex-Albion full back Paul Watson as assistant. Matt Miller became fitness coach specifically. Then Mauricio Taricco arrived as squad coach for '9/10, when White & Booker got P45's from Bloom. Charlie Oatway got their coaching role as boss of reserves, while Steve Brown took charge of competitive kids soccer. Taricco sorted 1st 11 defensive woes and advised GP on rearguard duties. Oatway steered his young charges to yet another BHA seconds Sussex Senior Cup victory. Meanwhile, scouting networks got a makeover and Spaniard Zigor Aranalde became chief scout. U18-to-pro progression was also revised. We all knew the Combination league was a joke and not good for proper progression of a first team squad. A reliance on kids to make up reserve numbers was seen as a black hole in the scheme of things. So Gus decided to sort it. He brought in Luke Williams as coach for a revised development group in '10/11. At New Year 2011, Jim Joyce left and Nathan Ring became physio. He had been at Shrewsbury previously. Gus and his asistant come playing-sub, Mauricio Taricco (Tanno) worked wonders on the training ground and also benefitted from Matt Miller (Stretch) keeping the squad relatively injury-free off-field. Aranalde left the club in summer of 2011 to become a coach in Spain.

Gus Poyet Back to Top
WITHDEAN ERA 2009 - 2011 League One.
South American carnival came to city by the sea.
Tony Bloom selected a top flite coach for the BHA hot seat in the autumn of '09, although Gus Poyet hadn't exactly got a track record as a gaffer. But whether it was at Withdean or Falmer, potential was definitely there to really go places. The 41yo Uruguayan ex-midfielder, with credentials at Chelsea and Spurs, stepped into an open-air environment hoping the roof wouldn't cave in before our new stad was erected. He immediately brought in Mauricio Taricco as no.2, to make it a Latin inspired foreign double with plenty of English experience. His Argy side-kick ex-defender had previously played for Ipswich & Spurs. Both men had a philosophy to win but also perform with entertaining footy to keep those crazy Brits happy. God only knows, Brighton fans had been starved of success during second half of this decade, while endlessly waiting for positives both on and off the field.
Poyet started with a big bang along the coast at Southampton but after that it kind of went tits up, like with Adams and Slade. However, genial Gus remained upbeat and musta had plenty of self belief. Slowly but surely, driven by passion and desire, GP stopped the rot, with BHA teetering on edges of the drop zone. Home form was dire but away, we were a different outfit - top-six figures for sure. Using Gussies knowledge and game plan, Brighton moved into mid table for '10, playing half decent football and finally giving their long suffering fans something to be happy about. Poyet introduced several successful on-loan signings and sent out a significant number of existing squad to other teams for games. He went for a 451 shape and tried to field a settled side. Passing footy was required and by and large, Albion scored more and conceded less than previously with orthodox 442.
Prior to start of '10/11, Gus took his newly assembled international squad to Portugal for er, multi-lingual bonding. He next signed an extended contract as manager until 2014. Pass, pass, pass was his mantra, although this now applied to third tier English basics. After an indifferent start to the final term at Withdean, BHA could concentrate on league1 - as we went out of LC and JPT comps in round1. By late September, Albion hit top of the table and stayed there for over seven months. A gap opened up above runners-up spot that chasing sides tried to close. An average spell of form during November and December coincided with an FA Cup run and bad weather. Once back on the promotion trail, Seagulls soared and during March won eight fixtures in series, to win GP Manager of the Month. Once again we were well clear of opposition and heading for the title. Promotion was achieved with five fixtures left and BHA became champions following the next match. What Gus had done for this club, backed by Tony Bloom's financial clout and Chairmanship, was truly remarkable and set us up for playing in the Championship at Falmer.

Russell Slade Back to Top
WITHDEAN ERA 2009 League One.
Hero to er, well a nice zero
During February 2009 Micky Adams left BHA suddenly and ended his brief second spell at this club. Mr Knight actually wanted Jim Gannon from Stockport as new boss but he turned us down. Paul Ince declined an interview and supposedly there were others on Knight's knee-jerk hit-list. Anyway, Russell Slade need a job coz he'd departed from Yeovil a few weeks beforehand. He signed a short-term deal in March to try and keep Albion in League1. His background was with Scarborough and Grimsby, where he got 'em to a p-o final in '05/6. He also did the same for Glovers small outfit in '06/7. The 48yo was obviously ambitious and noticed the great big hole being dug at Falmer straight away. Mr K said they would fill it with 22k punters in 2011 and Slade said, 'ok'. He set about keeping Albion in League1 and it went to the very last day to get sufficient points for survival.
For '09/10, Tony Bloom was now chairman and funded BHA for 100mill. Slade accumulated a new squad but it backfired as Seagulls slumped to d-z landings. By October '09, Bloom had taken enough punishment and Slade, White & Booker were given gardening leave and told to clear desks. Everybody said big Russ was a nice guy but you know what they mean about nice guys don't you? Falmer was being built and steelwork towered above the A27. Bloom had ambitions to be big in tier two and didn't want to waste another L1 season poncing about there, with threats of div4 come the next August becoming a reality. Look, life isn't a beach! Slade got a late job in '9/10 to rescue Orient from relegation - he did that too. So he got taken on there for '10/11. Russ did well at Brisbane Road and O's weren't so far off a play-off place in seventh.

Dean Wilkins Back to Top
WITHDEAN ERA 2006 - 2008 League One.
Where did the buck eventually stop?
Brighton may have failed miserably to make play-offs but there was plenty of knock-about action just below sixth place since dust settled on League1's table of '07/8 term. No sooner had Swansea exposed a glaring gap between champions and best of the mediocre rest, than it all kicked-off again at Albion in an immediate post-season week of shocks. Defender Joel Lynch said, 'a few more wins in games we know we should have won could have put us up there.' Finishing seventh also took its toll on out of contract fringe players, where several were involved on Mayday Bank Holiday in the 2008 Sussex Senior Cup final - see my considered match report. A once appreciable void then closed between non-league and league standards as witnessed at sunny Eastbourne. Goal-scorer Scott Chamberlain said, 'it can't have done my chances any harm that the gaffer was there to see it.' Captain Wes Fogden said, 'not everyone is going to be here next year so we played for each other and got the right result.' By midweek, manager Dean Wilkins announced Brighton's revised squad lists and Chamberlain, Fogden, striker Sam Gargan and keeper John Sullivan from a victorious reserves side were retained. That meant midfielder Paul Reid, Sam Rents, David Martot, Shane McFaul, Sonny Cobbs, Lloyd Skinner and sub-goalie Chris Winterton from those county cup winners were released. Some certainly felt hard done-by. Wilkins said, 'it is the nature of the game that to be competitive we have to make tough decisions.' Reid said, 'I thought being versatile and filling different positions has benefited the club and the team.' Reid also elucidated Wilkins didn't communicate enough with players, lacked man management skills and showed disrespect toward older pros. He furthermore suggested, 'you know deep down when your face doesn't fit you have got no chance.'
Apart from controversy among Brighton's seconds, long-serving first team regulars Guy Butters, Kerry Mayo and Gary Hart were similarly shown the door in a ten man clear-out. Injury prone Adam Hinshelwood and rookie Doug Loft were two kept on BHA books for 2008 as Albion revealed a 2.8 million pound loss to June 2007. Chairman Dick Knight said, 'the results spell out the urgent need for the new stadium with all the economic benefits it will bring.' Knight appeared to throw money at Wilkins playing budget in mid season when things were in a state of upheaval. At the time, original contract issues were apparently not up for extensive discussions, resulting in some comprehensive transfer activity. This set a trend for shuffling the deck to find a winning combination. Undoubtedly progress was made during a formative season with latterly a marque-two team-sheet that more than doubled first half points tally. Mr Knight got his anticipated top-ten position but must have been disappointed not to reach k-o phases - when converting a perceived selling club into an outright buying one. A few loan signings measured against lack of strength in depth had taken Brighton to brink of qualifying, without representing the real deal in terms of Championship potential. In truth we couldn't beat likes of Swansea, Carlisle, Forest and Leeds, while versus Southend and Doncaster only obtained points in very tight contests. Meanwhile Deadly Dick had his eye on the end game and in knowing what's needed for elevation, wasn't prepared to tolerate mere mid table anonymity. He could recognise a supposed threat to our club's present fan-base from continuous rise of Sussex teams chasing future League2 football. Nine thousand gates isn't enough turnover until 2010 and BHA thereafter require at least fourteen kay at accessible and sustainable Falmer. This league ain't big enough for two of us.
Anyway all of the aforementioned happenings took us rapidly to end of the first full week of May and incidentally, up in Essex, Southend hosted Doncaster for their p-o home leg that evening. Mr Knight had held a post mortem meeting and said, 'the board felt we needed a manager with more experience to help the club make the great leap back into the Championship.' Brighton fans found out via various grape-vines that legend Micky Adams had agreed a three year deal to return pronto to southern shores and create a beach-head for yet another Sussex promotion push. Simultaneously Eastbourne Borough joined Lewes and Crawley in Blue Square Premier division for 2008-9. Adams said, 'the challenge is to get the club into the Championship in the next two years leading up to Falmer.'
So rebounding irony of an up and down week was that if Wilkins actually had got Brighton into p-o contention, in spite of midterm gliches, he might not have experienced the proverbial rug pulled from under feet like some of his squad. It would seem a near miss is as good as a mile on the road to Falmer, when seen in those particular circumstances of applying relative success to this season. However, specialised knowledge necessary for a bosses CV on and off the field, could only be gained through traumatic involvement. Knight was happy to conduct contract negotiations because he's had well over ten years to reflect on peoples ulterior motives in and around professional football. Qualifications in business management and PR activities may have been foreign to Wilkins but hey, did he allow guidance from the club's senior mentor to become the thin end of a powerful wedge to side-track his other skills? Perhaps DW had visions of his own that did not dovetail with DK's three-year Falmer dream machine. Development of a home-bred eleven was a route instigated in residual days of McGhee's abortive reign, when Brighton was skint in more ways than one. So it should hold up to inspection that Deano would want to take his youth products as far as they could go, possibly at expense of other signings. Despite BHA's restrictive finances since 1999 and economic climates recently, there is now investment available riding on the back of late pro-Falmer political decision. This may not have sufficiently swayed our rookie ex-manager from a chosen path of completing his favoured pet coaching project. Those with ultimate power to hire and fire obviously thought differently and exercised their options to devastating effect. Older ex-manager Adams, was repetitively willing and able and it all fell into place, even if timing was bizarrely out of phase with Withdean's boss no.6, boys to men achievements. But Knight had waited too long to ponder on what-ifs and after all he is again, like our home-coming initial no1 leader, a man on a veritable mission. By appointing Adams and replicating moves devised before dawn of the twenty-first century, he aimed to repeat success at second time of asking. It surely proved a harder task and in a sense there was much more to lose, apart from missing that cherished top10 target, when facing another relegation occasion. Micky was of course a philosophical icon among his many talents and one quote that springs to mind is, 'failing to prepare is preparing to fail.' You know it all makes perfect sense in hindsight really.
For 2009-10 Dean was appointed assistant to Alan Pardew at League1 Southampton. Dick Knight had gone upstairs to run hospitality and oversee community affairs but we're sure he had a kind word with his old Albion hero - no hard feelings. We just love a happy BHA ending too. DW again found he had yet another new boss before too long but hey, that's ya footy merry-go-round for yer!

Mark McGhee Back to Top
WITHDEAN ERA 2003 - 2006 League One & Championship.
What did he get into?
Going back in time to mid November 2003, BHA were full of anticipation for a successful launch to return to a division 1 orbit. Mark McGhee had stepped forward to replace Steve Coppell and next up was Bristol City at Withdean. Albion were in 4th place in div2, four points ahead of City and within reach of leaders Plymouth and QPR. McGhee said, 'I don't think anyone at the club believes we have a squad that can guarantee us a top two finish. Therefore I am determined to put together a squad that will give us a chance of finishing in the top two.' After the match which Bristol won 4-1, McGhee then said, 'I think between the time of Steve going and me arriving at the club, the players had lost a little bit of confidence and a bit of fitness and they are starting to get that back. This should bode well for the very hard programme coming up... However there's a lot of work to be done in order to get us back to the top of this division and we just can't afford to have days off at the moment.' Brighton fans had got a shock during that Bristol fixture but home form picked up again and the next 90 minute Withdean 'loss' of sorts, was to Swindon in '03/4 play-off semi-finals. Meanwhile McGhee struggled to prevent a string of defeats on the road until entering the run-in proper. His words were seemingly as thin as Albion's away form as we went for at least 6th qualifying spot. A play-off place was secured, five points behind third placed Bristol City and six adrift of automatically promoted QPR.
Three seasons later on our last visit to Ashton Gate for a JPT tie the manager had changed, although Albion's '06/7 squad had not radically altered. During a summer day of 1 September '06, in an early season League 1 sparring contest at City, McGhee fell foul of fans and ultimately his Chairman. In a slightly different ball game, Wilkins was also building for a future and still generally has backing while inheriting, understanding and tackling latent problems. McGhee's then fielded team could be called experimental, having shown the door to numerous established pro's before pre-season. By default, Wilkins had adapted those remaining personnel to needs as he saw fit for purpose to progress. If ongoing League results were expressed in form of a graph, an undulating upward curve reached a plateau, possibly peaked and had to be watched closely, if not monitored ultra carefully for signs of downward motion. But that midweek contest was a second consecutive cup-tie and one perhaps with more significance than being pushed over the edge by a flashy Prem outfit. There were post match measures pinpointing how far Brighton had fallen in relation to a typical top ten League 1 club, who we crucially defeated in regaining Championship status - getting on for three years before. Essentially Albion had to view it like past play-off or Millennium Stadium style events charged with positive energy. However times had changed and this was kicked off by McGhee but eventually to be finished by Wilkins.
MMcG went to Motherwell and did ok. So he took off for Aberdeen. It was as far north as he wanted to go. Mark came back in pre-season 2010 with Aberdeen for a friendly at W'dean. He said he had to sell players at Albion coz the club was so skint with Falmer sucking up any extra dosh. Ok, let by gones etc, it's all in the past anyway. BTW, somehow McGhee held onto an SPL job when his outfit got claymored 9-0 later that season. Not too much later he was unemployed again. Ock aye the noo Jock!!

Steve Coppell Back to Top
WITHDEAN ERA 2002 - 2003 Championship (div1).
Told as a tale of double standards.
By summer's end of 2002, Martin Hinshelwood had his very short career as Albion manager, washed away in autumn rains. It also poured cold water on hopes of green-as-grass BHA, establishing in div1 after a meteoric rise from lowest launch sites of div3 mud-baths. Steve Coppell was drafted in to try and stabilise the '02/3 situation and keep us up if at all possible. He nearly succeeded in a dramatic turn around of events. A year later, Coppell baled out for higher levels and Mark McGhee came in as leader for '03/4. In '04/5 McGhee was faced with a slightly different scenario to Coppell when managing Brighton in the Championship. He had the luxury of pre-season to prepare, plus div1 experience elsewhere - unlike Hinshelwood and knew the squad, unlike Coppell.
Each manager had brought their own players in to bolster the team but were very restricted by budgets and running costs. Although the side as such had changed over two years, the backbone of a competent keeper, tough tackling centre half and proven goal scorer was in situ for both campaigns. In fairness to Hinsh, he was deprived of these three key elements continuously through injuries and players poor form. The learning curve also rose steeply for old pro's and kids alike, who altogether were first time in at the deep end.

If we consider each season as a battle for survival, the critical phase was that following the start period when damage had already occured. Coppell had the disadvantage of reversing a long losing run, which saw Brighton bottom of the div1 table and adrift of fellow strugglers. McGhee in contrast almost languished in mid table and only had to repeat this performance for a mediocre but highly applauded finish.
02/3 P12 W1 D1 L10 Pt4 Po24 Hinshelwood
04/5 P12 W4 D3 L5 Pt15 Po15 McGhee

After the start was recorded, it left a target to be achieved over remaining 34 games up to a total of 46. The bottom line in each case was to survive.
02/3 +34 11 13 10 Pt 46 Po21 Coppell
02/3 P46 12 14 20 Pt 50
04/5 +34 08 11 15 Pt 35 Po21 McGhee
04/5 P46 12 14 20 Pt 50

At halfway stage through these terms, when we had met each opponent once, effects of the calibre of individual leadership could be measured. Coppell tightened defence that subsequently kept scores down. He made us harder to beat and competitive on a level playing field at some big name stadia. McGhee was finding defeats at our Withdean nature reserve a thorn in his side, compounded by some stinging shocks away that had him reaching for an antidote.
02/3 P23 W3 D5 L15 Pt14 Po24 Coppell
04/5 P23 W7 D4 L12 Pt25 Po20 McGhee

In both cases it was far from a winter of discontent as results reflected a healthy return of points taken at the three quarters snapshot. In 2003 Coppell had to attempt finding a winning formula to nullify inertia of a legacy of very bad opening stats. McGhee needed to ensure defeats were kept to a minimum in order to stay on schedule, having got half of his points in the bag by beginning of 2005.
three quarters
02/3 P35 W7 D8 L20 Pt29 Po22 Coppell
04/5 P35 W12 D8 L15 Pt44 Po15 McGhee

A realistic rescue act was not thought possible, given conditions for Coppell to operate. It went to the last day but Albion were at least 5 points shy of the cut-off line. The Brighton team of two season's later also needed a result in the final fixture to make sure of staying up. McGhee ended six points better with his second year triers.
full season
02/3 P46 W11 D12 L23 Pt45 Po23 Coppell - relegated
04/5 P46 W13 D12 L21 Pt51 Po20 McGhee - survived

Coppell was undertaking major surgery in his 34 match exploration. He scored highly in mid season, run-in and second half periods. He missed a tough target but got 89pc of the way there. Coppell roused Seagulls to obtain 16 of final points tally during the run-in. Projected over a full term this strike rate would have ensured a position above the drop zone. McGhee unfortunately found himself attempting to re-motivate a side that peaked before well before run-in. His latter figs were relegation type form and a gaffers nightmare. He regained equalibrium with late salvage work to actually hit his er, mark.
mid season
02/3 P23 W6 D7 L10 Pt25
04/5 P23 W8 D5 L10 Pt29
second half
02/3 P23 W8 D7 L8 Pt31
04/5 P23 W6 D8 L9 Pt26
02/3 P11 W4 D4 L3 Pt16 Coppell - unlucky
04/5 P11 W1 D4 L6 Pt 7 McGhee - just made the grade.

Martin Hinshelwood Back to Top
WITHDEAN ERA 2002 Championship (div1).
Summer, first, second then third times.
There were of course ups and downs in the Withdean era. By start of '02/3 campaign, Brighton were new boys in div1 and with a new manager as well. Peter Taylor had departed soon after receiving the div2 title silverware and Martin Hinshelwood was shifted into your proverbial managers office, from his position of responsibility with development of the youth squad. Dick Knight left things late to reorganise and pre-season for 2002 was about to get underway. Hinshelwood had originally been appointed Barry Lloyd's assistant way back in 1987. He then came back to the club prior to our Withdean era, under their new regime to build sides of successful Sussex youngsters. His brief was to fast-track kids to do a job as pros - initially reaching BHA first team squad.
Also going back - to those gory years of a decrepit Goldstone, followed by exile at Gillingham, a few die-hards could remember poor starts to several seasons. However no Albion fan would want to repeat that 12 match opening sequence to '02/3, that did for us long before a panic-stricken run-in. Mid table mediocrity, smug safety scenario, a comfortable cushion and perusing play-off pursuits would have done nicely instead. To log those first dozen games, reflect upon initial points and performances and dwell on the start generally, set a far from usual trend. We took 4pts from 2 opening fixtures but none thereafter until well into autumn. As a row of LLLL... increased, Dick Knight said words to the effect of, '10 and out.' He was as good as his word and Hinshelwood got promoted upstairs to Director of Football.
As a comparison, a second stab at tier two level starts in '04/5 and third in '05/6 is worth a look for stats purposes. Brighton had grown accustomed to being in a drop zone dog-fight by then. Working to tight budgets was mandatory and totally necessary as the fight for Falmer swallowed huge amounts of dosh. Injuries, fitness and loss of an edge became prime factors in make up of the selected sixteen. Out of form but quality strikers are hard to substitute, when realised from those zany Zamora halcyon days. Championship type players didn't want to come here and so Hinshelwood's revised role was even more important than ever before. Home bred youngsters began to slot into his first eleven in desperate times and to some extent, this policy resumed at a later date. Several kids made the grade and helped pursue an Albion dream. If you're good enough, you're old enough. Hinsh as Director of Football, went on to bring many more Sussex kids into pro football in the Withdean era.

02/3 P12 W1 D1 L10 Pt4 Po24 Hinshelwood
04/5 P12 W4 D3 L5 Pt15 Po15 McGhee
05/6 P12 W1 D7 L4 Pt10 Po21 McGhee

Peter Taylor Back to Top
WITHDEAN ERA 2001 - 2002 League One (div2).
Different boss, similar bottom line.
With more managers than you can shake a fixture list at in an extraordinary decade, the Withdean era kicked-off with Micky Adams in 1999. He had the nucleus of a side to be play-off contenders after his first twelve months proper. In '00/01 Adams revolution rolled on and there was a sustained promotion push. Consistency of a fantastic 2pt/gm average culminated in some div3 silverware in Albion's centenary year. The following term '01/2 started in similar vein, initially launching a winning campaign for div2 heights. Adams appeared to be repeating history, however he left for kudos of the Premiership. The popular Yorkshireman went to Leicester as assistant. Their ex-manager Peter Taylor took over here and the challenge continued somewhat seamlessly. It was business as usual until the trophy was won, again with a superb 1.95 index at this successive title race's climax.

One way to interpret these two back-to-back champions seasons is to measure both for their repective target period. After each start of 12 games, a forecast for remaining 34 fixtures is then set. This in turn computes a total, which as these seasons progress, result in an actual bottom line. As detailed below, Adams and Taylors records are on the left while their ultimate projections are to right of the table.
Withdean era season2, Div3 '00/1 - Micky Adams:
P12 W07 D02 L03 Pt23 - start for Adams
P34 W21 D06 L07 Pt69 - W17 D10 L07 Pt61 target
P46 W28 D08 L10 Pt92 - W24 D12 L10 Pt84 total
Withdean era season3, Div2 '01/2 - Peter Taylor:
P12 W06 D04 L02 Pt22 - start by Adams for Taylor
P34 W19 D11 L04 Pt68 - W17 D10 L07 Pt61 target
P46 W25 D15 L06 Pt90 - W23 D14 L09 Pt83 total

Taylor progressed a settled side on through the autumn/winter period of '01/2 to mostly be in the top two and set-fair for p-o stages at least. In fact Albion stormed through the higher division just like a year previously. They eventually went on to win the title and collected consecutive championships - no mean feat. The 2002 run-in began with their last defeat as Brighton took 24pts from 30 possible in an amazing unbeaten climax. For his own reasons Taylor didn't want to be gaffer for an attempt to stake a claim in div1.
run-in sequences;
'00/1 DWDWW WDWWDL = 22pts Adams
'01/2 LWDWW DWWWDW = 24pts Taylor

Micky Adams Back to Top
WITHDEAN ERA 1999 - 2001 Leagues Two & One (divs3 & 2), 2008 - 2009 League One.
Revolution Part 1 - League Two.
In May 2008 Micky Adams said, 'I thought it was a great honour when I got the job the first time but to be offered the chance to comeback for a second time is fantastic.' He'd left Brighton in October 2001 to become assistant at Leicester, then manage to guide that club back into the Premiership. Adams subsequently had two years at Coventry from 2005, including a move to their new stadium in the Championship. But it was at Brighton in 1999 that our gritty Yorkshireman showed skills as a motivator and winner. As the youngest player-manager in the league at Fulham in 1996, he led them to promotion from div3 straight away. Adams then had a spell at Brentford and very briefly Swansea, before mailing his CV to Dick Knight. Those following two and a half years became known as Adams revolution, as he transformed a down-and-out fourth tier side into champions. Micky and the Albion were seemingly a match made in heaven but an ambitious young man wanted to test himself in the elite. Somehow on returning to our fold, where stakes were upped with all-round approval of Falmer, Adams still appeared to be the right man at slightly less than the right moment. 'Brighton managed to reach the Championship not so long ago and I laid the foundations for that,' he said. But with passing through of those of his players who once held their own at tier two, Adams had a partial rebuilding job in League1 to complete. However with the second coming, a lot of club infrastructure and experience was in place to assist with team reconstruction and creation of expected p-o candidates, or better, table toppers mark two.

Revolution Part 2 - League One.
Back to the club where he appeared fatefully drawn in 1999, Micky Adams was responsible for Albion's Withdean year2 elevation to Lg1 (div2). Since then in nine years of struggle, BHA obtained two further promotions (yr3 & yr5) and look how far the club has come from 20th century dark days. It could be argued that there were two distinct types of period for furthering Brighton's ambitions - progressive (yr1-6) and static (yr7-10). In a sense both categories produced the goods, albeit hardly by linear or 'normal' progression with time. It was usually more of two steps forward and one back. Those early attempts to establish in the Championship (yr4, yr6-7) should not be seen in isolation - but as an accumulative product of what went before. Each previous hop was precluded by regular stepping stones, with pause to regroup and eventually try to move forward (yr1-3, yr5 and yr8-10). Life in lower league was again part of an anticipated if somewhat enigmatic rise to tier two, where Albion expect to play football and as Adams originally recognised - rightfully belong. In a decade of striving, BHA, the club and managers and fans are still ambitious for the consolidated Championship future. A top ten team consistently performing at a modern stadium could be considered a minimum aspiration for representing a significant football city by the sea.

Once again Micky Adams was in charge and we suspected he wasn't just there for old times sake. Having said that, if Brighton were serious about mounting a promotion challenge, it might be pertinent to compare those seasonal starts from Withdean era years when we done good. BHA achieved promotion from lg2 (div3) in 2001 and again from lg1 (div2) in 2002. We were back in the equivalent to League1 for 2003 but managed to gain a place in div2 play-offs. In 2008 these k-o stages were just out of reach, although early stats did give an indication of what was needed to progress. As a rule of thumb, 20+ points is a useful tally after twelve fixtures and even a couple pts less could set a path for 6th position. To make an assault on automatic promotion places, you gotta get points in the bag from day one....

Overview - Withdean Stats.
Y1 99/0 D3 P12 W5 D3 L4 Pt18 Po11 - Adams
Y2 00/1 D3 P12 W7 D2 L3 Pt23 Po3 -- Adams
Y3 01/2 D2 P12 W6 D4 L2 Pt22 Po3 -- Adams
Y5 03/4 D2 P12 W7 D3 L2 Pt24 Po1 -- Coppell
Y8 06/7 L1 P12 W4 D2 L6 Pt14 Po14 - McGhee
Y9 07/8 L1 P12 W5 D2 L5 Pt17 Po10 - Wilkins
10 08/9 L1 P12 W2 D7 L3 Pt13 Po17 - Adams
11 9/10 L1 P12 W3 D4 L5 Pt13 Po17 - Slade
12 10/11L1 P12 W7 D4 L1 Pt25 Po1 -- Poyet

Withdean Managers comparisons for points per game.
Adams kicked-off the start to '99 in an initial Withdean era campaign (year1), with a vast improvement on anything since relegation to div3 in '95. Occupying a position in mid table was almost acceptable - with an average of 1.5 points per game. He eclipsed that the very next term '00 by overturning three losses out of four opening fixtures, to record a promotion type index value of 1.9pt/gm - or rounded-up nearly two per match. His third blast from the blocks in '01 saw similar figures clocked, before Adams jumped ship - 1.83pt/gm.
Steve Coppell gave evidence to claim to be a winning manager when equalling automatic promotion figures in his start to '03 - 2.0pt/gm. Unfortunately he was also sought after, as success implied greater ability rather than mere capability.
Mark McGhee came in later to stay on course for play-offs. He was in final days at the helm for '06 when Albion returned to third tier football. His starting stats were not much above survival level - 1.17pt/gm.
Wilkins quickly replaced McGhee and a year on had the task of aiming for play-offs from the word go in '07. His numbers were 1.42pt/gm which was a tad shy of the real deal required for a top-six spot.
Mr Knight did a Sir Alan and Adams came home for a second revolution in '08. MA got 1.08pt/gm - oh no! That was relegation form.
So there you are, points win prizes and writing was on the proverbial wall from high summer until 'see you in September'. Drop too many points early in the season and you are up against it. Get a head start on rivals and suddenly, it's a quarter of the way toward a possible fourth promotion in a decade of on the up - dream on.

Second going...
Brighton's start to '08/9 wasn't the best preparation for bettering '07/8 sequences but even with these mundane stats in the bag, expectation remained high for progress toward top-six. However things went from bad to worse. Apart from loss of form, a series of injuries meant MA couldn't field a settled side and loan players came and went up to New Year '09. Poor results at W'dean throughout mid-season put Albion into the drop-zone and Adams under pressure to find a fix. We thought him bullet proof with Mr Knight's backing but before end of Feb '09, Micky Adams had left Brighton again. It appeared he couldn't find an elusive magic formula for second time of asking and turn basic pro's into a team going places at third tier level. Moreover it seemed as if he was fighting a losing battle with scouting and director factions at the club. He recognised the level of players was under par but couldn't change the course of this round of results. Once on the rocky road, Adams saw the warning signs and where it was leading. Others wouldn't accept his brand of realism and asked a lot of someone true to individual beliefs. Micky had never towed the line to keep himself in a job. Adams became boss at Port Vale and hoped to do another rebuilding job - professionally and personally. At start of 2011, Micky applied for and got, the vacant mngrs job at Sheff Utd. He almost felt he deserved it. Trouble was, they were soon relegated to league1 and Adams and side-kick Alan Cork got the old tintack. So he went back to Vale and carried on.

W'dean Ins & Outs Back to Top
WITHDEAN ERA... League One, Championship & League Two.
in 2009-2011 out - Elliott Bennett (League One)
Winger and more; 20yo from Wolves for £250k+ for '9/10 and Russ Slade chased him to say the least. Did wing walking at speed. Looked like a confidence player and Gus Poyet needed to get his arms spread in a man to boy hug. Super-kid obviously had raw ability but needed coaching bad. Reasonable first apps and sensational in one game with wonder goal too. Perhaps played a tad too deep at home. Generally did good stuff while open to improvement. Not used to full effect either but did defend. Made an effort to get on score sheet with regular strikers so in-and-out. Hid a tad on flank and often spasmodic involvement when kicked off the park at L1 level. Then followed super displays away, plus great goals. PoY runner up.
'10/11; Bit of fetch and carry duties and had a special delivery. FAC equaliser but could score more overall. Busy as supplier to strikers in 4312 free role. Increasingly influencial from midfield or off either flank. Part of the core of a title winning side. Got his own chant and went down the wing for it. PoY candidate.
Transfer Window - Tony Bloom said no to offer. End of season - received L1 442 mag PoY award. Went to Norwich for 1.5mill in close season. Deserved a shot against elite.

in 2008-2011 out - Glenn Murray (League One)
300k signing from Rochdale in '08 as lg2 hitman who got goals. Tall and fairly good in the air, ok too on the floor. Had a footy brain but needed service to exploit talent. Scored no probs and obviously had an eye for chances. Hold-up okish but no real pace. Got stuck between a rock and a hard place. Injuries included needing groin surgery. Also stomach problem and other stuff.
'9/10 season; dug in and needed to and all. Took pens but sent off as well. Better stance with new coaches when Poyet arrived. 4goal hero and bit of an enigma - a poacher in the box. League1 striker at his level. Eventually broke home goal duck but ban for loadsa yellows. His own worst enemy with Refs and temperment had to be coached if to be a tier-two pro of note. Came back from injury and had a mare as solo striker. Sent off and ban - was a very bad boy for sure. Talk of poss transfer back up north. Woulda saved on shrinks fee too.
'10/11 season; off the mark early doors and looked sharp in make or break year. Subbed but was first on selection list. Missed basic chances but bagged difficult ones. Had an edge in more ways than one, languid with a winning streak you might say. Picked up too many yellows, although MoM performances - when he wanted to! Hat-trick hero to boot!! 20+ goal striker and leading scorer. PoY candidate in title winning year. Very good strike rate over three seasons. Came good in the end, now gone and soon forgotten.

in 2006-2011 out - Andrew Whing (League One)
Dean Wilkins first took the tenacious right back on loan from Coventry, for Brighton's return to league1, in October of '06/7. In the summer of '07/8 he signed permanently and became no.2 outright. During '08/9, Albion were heading straight for league2 and the red-haired Brummie played a significant part in Russ Slade securing BHA survival. When Gus Poyet arrived in '9/10, Seagulls were again struggling and after heavy loss against top notch Norwich, Whingy was not involved in squad participation on match days. The self confessed Aston Villa fan made 115 apps and got voted PoY for that '08/9 great escape. Russ Slade rescued his career when taking the tough tackling defender to Orient on loan in '10/11, then signed permanently. Albion paid up the contract and Andy became a free agent, so went to Brisbane Road. He said, 'I would like to thank fans for being so supportive during my time at the club.' While Albion often made hard work of life in league1, Whing could sometimes be part of travelling support when not selected and was seen on terraces rooting for team mates like a true fan.

in 2008-2010 out - Adam Virgo (League One, Championship)
Micky Adams returned to Brighton in May 2008 and so did Adam Virgo, when signed in July on a free transfer from Celtic. He was transferred there by Mark McGhee in close season of 2005 for 1.5 million quid, following a season conveted from defender to striker. Virgo did ok as a front-man in the Championship of '04/5, scoring 9 goals from 36 apps. His last net buster was on the final day at home to Ipswich. That strike and subsequent point, ensured Albion stayed in tier two for another season. He was voted PoY for services to BHA. In Mar/Apr of 2001 Adams started Adam in the first eleven as deputy for Danny Cullip. He had come through Youth ranks and was one of the first to show the club's policy was working. Dean Hammond (no.27/22), Dan Harding (no.19/26), Adam Hinshelwoood (no.24) and Adam El-Abd (no.28) were others who made the grade during those early noughties. He made a few appearances under Taylor and Coppell in the no.22 shirt but did a spell away on-loan as Albion struggled in div1. It was McGhee who kick-started his career with no.19 printed on back of b&w stripes. Clock this reserve team-sheet for a night in December 2003; Keeley, Watson, Harding, Virgo, Hinshelwood, Pethick, Marney, Pitcher, Lee, Windsor, Beck. After New Year, Virgo got a position at right back and held it as Albion claimed a knockout spot. Any Brighton fan who remembers play-offs of 2004 knows it was Virgo who got a very, very late equaliser to send a s-f tie to penalties - see Swindon history tab. Adam Virgo was on-loan from Scotland to Coventry and Colchester, when Adams had jobs at those clubs in 2006 & 2007. Adam said, 'I had other offers but the gaffer said all the right things. I am 25 now, I thank him for the opportunity he has given me. I was unfortunate with injuries and things didn't happen. I just want to enjoy football again.' Micky Adams said, 'if he can replicate what he did in his first spell then we have got a player relatively cheap.' AV asked for shirt no.23.
During '08/9 Virgo was pretty much first choice throughout, barring a couple of bans for two red cards. For '9/10 AV got to play in his preferred position at cent def from Aug but wasn't able to hold down regular selection under GP as boss. Virgo fought his way back for 2010 but could be considered unfortunate to be sent off at Leeds in Feb. From then on he slipped further in pecking order and out of 1st 11 contention. Virgo's contract was not renewed by Gus Poyet for season '10/11 - the last one at Withdean. So Adam joined Nathan Jones at Yeovil following a successful trial.

in 2007-2010 out - Nicky Forster (League One)
Forster was nearly 34yo when signing for 75k in June '07. He had been around the block and came here from Hull, who were then on the up. Forster is remembered prior to his stint at BHA, as the sub for Reading who netted against us with a dodgy hand-ball - but it was given! In '07/8 Nicky scored 19 times during a fair season under Dean Wilkins when pushing for a play-off place. He twice reached 16 in subsequent terms, often alongside Glenn Murray in a useful striking duo. Forster managed to retain a quick turn of pace that caught out many a defender at lower league. NF was blessed with a football brain, as well as skillful feet and a will to win. He knew the game back to front and kept clear of serious injury from cloggers who might target match winners. A Surrey born sportsman, Nicky fancied going on to a career in footy after playing. He had his own opinions, some of which would involve differences. Forster left Albion late in '9/10 season, following a dispute with Gus Poyet over offer of contract renewal. He then joined Brentford in league1 and went on to be interim manager in '10/11. Hung up boots and decided on a career in footy management.

2008 out - Dean Hammond (League One, Championship)
After rejecting a new offer, no.11 Dean Hammond joined Colchester for 250k in the January transfer window of 2008. He was a home-grown player who came through ranks to be an influential member of Wilkins '07/8 squad but moved on before signing a contract that would have made him a top earner at BHA.
In December 2006, Cheltenham Town had gone back to Gloucestershire very late on a Saturday night having been defeated at Withdean by an 11th hour penalty. Player of the year in '06/7, Dean Hammond got a brace of goals that evening. His coolly taken spot-kick completed a consecutive but ultimately rare home win to push Albion into the top ten. Brighton seemingly could double their average tally as expected and then a few bonus points would send us into play-off contention as in '03/4. Er, no. Robins eventually did go bobbing along, while Seagulls merely defecated in their own nest.
In May 2004, Brighton fans were preparing to get into play-offs, then hoped to knockout opponents Swindon and go see their heroes run out as winners at the Millennium Stadium. Hammond had not figured in that plucky super squad, which was worthy of a shot at regaining Championship status. Latter units were a long way off such fanciful aspirations. Anyway, Hammond had been a stalwart in a useful reserves side that strolled through to contend the Sussex Senior Cup final. A string of half decent performances in their Combination league as well, reflected the driving force that was Hammond and Lee in mid-field. Unlike his Sussex born colleague's career afterwards, Dave Lee (no.23) was never able to break into the first eleven on a regular basis and was released by Mark McGhee. Brighton seconds contested for silverware against Worthing FC and led from an early penalty on May Bank Holiday Monday. For over an hour the result hung in balance as West Sussex seasiders went for it. They had been runners-up in Ryman div1 south and appeared well organised. On 73 minutes a superb move down the right flank resulted in a high ball into the centre. From around the D, Hammond smashed a volley goalwards. The ball went into a bottom corner and if it had happened in a p-o decider at Withdean, the place would have erupted on cue. It was a fantastic goal that won Albion the cup, although when Hammond held it up there was something of an anticlimax without typical noisy away support on hand.
The following season of '04/5, Hammond wearing no.22 was in and out of the first team but finally established his credentials as a local lad done good. Very late in that campaign to hold on to a Championship place, he got two goals against West Ham at Withdean in a precious 2-2 draw. Both were headers and the second came in the last minute from a Carpenter (no.12) cross. By the next game, no. 45, Albion had accumulated 50 points and needed one more to ensure continued status, which was still considered success, if actually not quite suitable consolidation. Hammond had made the grade and went on to make 40 appearances at no.11 in the Championship of '05/6. Brighton were relegated on Easter Monday as McGhee's misfiring, misplaced and mismanaged charges lost yet again at home. Hammond got sent off for two bookables after 80 minutes to prematurely end his season. This fortuitously expired before he witnessed the team's last day dire display versus Stoke City. That marked a required evolution - if not exactly to say revolution for '06/7. With 46 apps and 11 goals he became regarded as an experienced player in his prime and important to future success. DH got to wear the captains armband at and established as a goal-scoring midfielder. His loss during the middle of a possible play-off season in '07/8 did make a difference to continuity of results expected from a settled side. Hammond joined Southampton in Aug 2009 to join up with coach Dean Wilkins there.

in 2005-2006 out - Colin Kazim-Richards (Championship)
Those who saw Kazim-Richards playing for Turkey in Euro 2008 must have wondered how he'd ended up in warmer climes than Sussex by the sea. He was transfered away from BHA in late August 2006 after turning out for 45 min in a reserve match at Woodside Road, Worthing. There were issues between Brighton management and the single-minded striker who made a subs appearance in the opening game of '06/7. Mark McGhee with backing of Mr Knight, transferred Kazim-Richards to Sheffield United for 150k and he went from League1 to the Premiership in one foul swoop.
In pre-season of 2005, a young Brighton fan won 250k in a 'buy a player' competition. 19yo Colin was at Bury and came over to Albion, thereafter to be known as the Coca-cola kid. He was a Brit but with Antiguan and Cypriot roots. For once Brighton was flush with dosh, having sold Adam Virgo (ex-no.19) for 1.5 million and 450k tribunal settlement for Dan Harding (ex-no.26) going to Leeds, plus sell-on clause. McGhee said, 'there are good players to be had at the right price - as I think we've proved with the acquisition of C K-R.' McGhee also got Argentinian Federico Turienzo (no.8) in for a supposed 150k to his agent. Also a couple of Frenchmen, Seb Carole (no.17) and Alex Frutos (no.19). Alexis Nicolas (no.6) got aboard and had U21 selection for yeah, wasn't it Cyprus? Experienced Jason Dodd (no.5) arrived from along the coast with Prem credentials. It was hoped Brighton could now consolidate in the Championship with these additions to the squad. CKR wore no.22 and made 42 apps, scoring 6 goals in '05/6. Nearly all were sensational strikes, truly worthy of higher standard. Colin became a bit of a super-sub in a bitter season of disappointment otherwise. It was common knowledge McGhee was tearing his relegation threatened hair out trying to tame the impulsive and free spirited front runner. At end of term with Albion demoted, McGhee said, 'we must be determined to keep all our best players'. Turienzo made one start and 3 subs apps and was quickly let go. Carole didn't come back a second time, having disappeared to Leeds. Frutos stayed and played in '06/7 but became another foreign liability. Alexis Nicolas didn't seem to make the grade afterall. Dodd was always injured and went west from where he came. A few days after Kazim-Richards bolstered his anticipated successful career, McGhee was sacked by Mr Knight and those mega bucks buying and selling days were over for a while. It was good while it lasted.

in 2003-2005 out - Leon Knight (League One, Championship)
At Xmas 2005 and New Year 2006 Albion were really up against it in the Championship of '05/6. On Boxing Day, Charlie Oatway (no.10) was crocked versus of all teams QPR at Withdean. It was also no.7 Leon Knight's last start. We'd been done 0-3 away at Luton in that stupid fixture compressed between one old year's festival and another brand new knees-up. Failed S. American Federico Turienzo (no.8) made his only start up the M1. Then sinking Albion lost at home to Millwall next. Leon Knight came on as sub, in a year when it all ended in tears - for Mark McGhee! On the bus to a Happy New Year fixture at Southampton, supposedly Knight verbally fell out with the gaffer. Michel Kuipers (no.1) got involved and neither player figured in this match. Ex-Saint Jason Dodd (no.5) made the coffee at half-time but only because he was fit to do so. Brighton lost again and things were coming apart. By that transfer window of end of January, Knight had departed way over the Welsh threshold in League1. He'd made 111 league apps and netted 35 times over three seasons. As seller McGhee counted on fingers his dosh in multiples of 10k, he wondered on the value of each of Leon's often fantastic scoring achievements.
Steve Coppell had procured services of the Chelsea front man, on loan for beginning of a League1 campaign in 2003. Bobby Zamora (no.25) had left for Spurs and BHA needed somebody to fill a void after relegation. With massive changes at Stamford Bridge, Leon Knight quickly signed permanently for '03/4 and went on to record excellent stats in what became a promotion year - 25 goals from 42 apps. He hit the winning penalty in Cardiff to send Albion back to the Championship against the odds. When Mark McGhee took over in Nov '03, Knight scored a brace at Peterborough to impress his new boss. It was tougher for LK back in the Championship of '04/5 as Leon struggled to find the net. Knight was lucky by remaining injury free but it ran out with his disciplinary record. Apart from regular yellow cards he also got into trouble with McGhee. He was tried in a variety of forward roles and also as something of a playmaker, where he was effective. However Leon wanted to take, rather than make goals and had to settle for being penalties first choice as others got glory from open play. His 90th min winner at Sheff Utd in Jan '05 was typical of predatory instincts. With better service he might have notched a greater tally.
Knight had a spell at MK Dons but became something of a journeyman. He had plenty of talent, super skills and was also good in the air. He knew quite a bit about self belief but his ego got in the way of relationships with people he shouldn't really offend. Leon next played for a dozen or so clubs in the UK and a few abroad too, when last reported in 2010. He said he was a changed man now, with responsibilities like a partner and kids - OMG.

in 2002-2003 out - Paul Kitson (Championship)
Brighton had reached div1 for their fourth year at temporary Withdean in an historic rise from previous depths of decline. But progress stalled as Albion hit a long losing run, to prop up the division and stare relegation in the face from late summer of 2002. New manager Martin Hinshelwood had a very short period to prepare for life in tier two and BHA kicked off the '02/3 season with a basic squad that had secured back-back promotions through lower leagues. He quickly got ex-Prem striker Paul Kitson to the club, a player with plenty of experience at higher grade. After all he'd been with Leicester, Derby, Newcastle and West Ham in a career of over 300 games. Bobby Zamora (no.25) was crocked very early in this campaign, so having a pukka front-man to lead our line was initially considered a blessing in disguise. Paul was from the north-east but came south after injury. However after four fixtures, 31yo Kitson was on the physio's bench again and didn't figure in the first team for another five months. He then made a single sub's app against Pompey at home in January 2003, following hamstring problems. Brighton's no.27 wasn't seen again apart from reserves run-outs until April, during a frantic run-in while scrapping for survival. Kitson made 10 appearances in total and scored 2 goals. Steve Coppell brought him on for 20 mins at Reading and he duly netted to put Albion two up. Kitson figured in final contests but it was too little too late - we went down and he just went.

in & out 2002 - Junior Lewis (League One)
During the first half of the '01/2 promotion campaign in div2, Brighton had lost only once away from fortress Withdean in 2001. Peter Taylor was seemingly steering BHA onward and upwards just like Micky Adams before. Then as return fixtures started for 2002, Albion lost 0-3 at Wigan, 0-2 at home to Preston in FAC3 and 0-4 on a nightmare evening in Brentford in January. Taylor wanted to keep on track and got Junior Lewis in for an early Feb trip to Oldham - we got beat again 0-2. Brighton did suffer defeat once more, at Stoke 1-3 but Lewis made a big difference to midfield as the run-in recorded vital wins to help us to a successive title. Junior Lewis was on loan from Leicester where Peter Taylor had previously been manager. He took a vacant no.6 shirt, available since Andy Crosby (ex-no.6) departed before New Year. In 16 apps he scored 4 times and those were vital goals for keeping a promotion challenge going.
Lewis was a Londoner who played for Gillingham when boss Taylor took them up to div1 in 2000. Previously the Taylor-Lewis combination had been at non-league Dover. As a lanky six footer, Junior could have played in defence or attack and was something of a utility player. He'd netted plenty of times as front man for Hendon in younger days. Taylor said, 'it's like signing three players.' Lewis slotted in straight away and already knew some of the squad, whose team spirit was second to none. He provided a touch of class as Albion obtained 32 points by May or 2pts/gm average that won us the league. Mr Taylor declined to be Brighton boss subsequently and moved around a lot for an experienced coach. Junior Lewis was obviously on his list of usual suspects for enhancing various other squads. They were together in non-league at last count.

in 2001-2002 out - Simon Morgan (League One)
When Junior Lewis was an apprentice at Fulham before 1992, defender Simon Morgan signed for the Cottagers. This was well before their lower league rise under Micky Adams and big-time giant leap with Al Fayed finances. In 2001 Adams assembled another promotion winning outfit at Albion and brought the experienced Morgan down from west London. He then played over 40 league games for BHA in '01/2 to finish a career of over 550 apps with a champions medal. Job done he went back to Fulham where he'd been promised a back-room position for life. Virtually ever present wearing the no.5 shirt in rearguard with (no.4) Danny Cullip, this selection formed a formidable defensive pairing as Brighton charged right through tier three. Likes of Andy Crosby (no.6) and Matt Wicks (no.23) couldn't get picked to start and both moved out, while Peter Taylor largely kept faith with Adams preferences. Morgan was an unsung, if perhaps forgotten hero who ensured Brighton attained their tier two status and personally suffered for devotion to duty. Simon's knees were a bit creaky to say the least and he had to have injections to maintain mobility. Quite how he managed to turn-out week after week was a mystery to physios and medical teams patching up an ageing centre half, who was half as fit as others but reliable, dependable and defensive in the extreme. The 35yo even got a goal at Withdean when upfield from a second attempted set piece versus Northampton. It was his first score since 1999 when in similar league circumstances, with champ's chasing Fulham on their way to div1. Talk about what goes around eventually, also quite often comes around. He went back to Fulham for an admin job and later joined Prem Lg in their community development.

in 2001-2003 out - Robbie Pethick (League One, Championship)
After being a non-playing sub at Swindon for the last div2 fixture of 2003, Robbie Pethick went on loan to Weymouth in non-league. He'd gone full circle, having started there as a fresh-faced kid. He came to Brighton from Bristol Rovers as part of Micky Adams intrepid excursion into div2 that first time for '01/2 and played under Steve Coppell in div1 of '02/3. By Mark McGhee's tenure and play-off chasing squad of '03/4, Pethick found it harder to get a starting place. Robbie had joined Brighton in pre-season of 2001 with Geoff Pitcher (no.7) from non-league, Dirk Lehmann (no.16) via Scottish footy and ex-Fulham stalwart Simon Morgan (no.5). Apart from Morgan the others were used mainly as subs and not regular first eleven starters. Lehmann was gone by Xmas and Pitcher's BHA career withered on the vine by New Year 2002. Pethick who was regarded as a defender, got selected for a spell as Peter Taylor sought a line-up to take us up. In the no.26 strip, Robbie became a utility player often subbing front runners as Taylor switched shape during the run-in contests. Under Martin Hinshelwood and Steve Coppell in div1 of '02/3, Robbie wore no.14 and his position was initially at full back, part of a 5 man c-d, or later in mf. When Dean Blackwell (no.5), Simon Rodger (no.30/8) and Ivar Ingimarsson (no.20) were brought in, he lost his place in the squad. Pethick was no.6 for '03/4 and career injuries to Blackwell and Rodger gave opportunities for selection. But McGhee kept faith with Nathan Jones (no.15), introduced Yeates (no.11) and Rehman (no.34) on loan and brought on youngsters like Hinshelwood (no.24), El-Abd (no.28), Harding (no.26) and finally Virgo (no.19). The writing was on the wall and for those at fringes it said, 'go west - now or later.'

in 2000-2002 out - Lee Steele (League Two & One)
At end of the '01/2 campaign Brighton finished as div2 title holders and the whole squad celebrated a second success on the bounce. None more so than Lee Steele, a striker who wore no.14 this term after unlucky no.13 previously. Striker Steele got 9 goals from around 40 apps, many of which were as sub. That was good compared to 2 strikes from 23 apps in '00/01, where he started only 4 times as aux front-man. Steele signed for Brighton as Micky Adams built a div3 promo side in 2000. He had come from Shrewsbury and initially non-league Northwich Victoria. His ratio of one goal every three games looked a useful stat when Albion would need to score 70 odd at tier four to go up. Other new additions Kuipers (no.1), Carpenter (no.12), Brooker (no.11), Zamora (no.25), Jones (no.15), Wicks (no.23) and Melton (no.20) all had super seasons but Steele stalled on fringes. Lee didn't pick up a yellow or red in '00/01 but his disciplinary record was Prem style bad-boy. Micky Adams changed his strip number for '01/2 and with Darren Freeman (ex-no.7) forced to retire, set up Steele as super-sub. Dirk Lehmann (no.16) was up front with Zamora. Soon he graduated to start and after Peter Taylor arrived as boss post Adams, held a strikers place and Lehmann transferred. While Albion wobbled in winter of 2002, so did Lee as Daniel Webb (no.30) got aboard but he returned for the run-in and played his part in a successive promotion. Lee's 90+ min diving, headed winner at home versus Bristol City, is forever archived in annals of Albion folklore. Taylor said, 'they were one of the best sides to visit Withdean this season.' Steele beat their off-side trap, dove in, stole the points and also our hearts on all fools day that April 1st. He received a champ's medal, although like Adams and Taylor set off for assumed greener grass outside Sussex.

in 1998-2000 out - Rod Thomas (League Two)
Ex-Albion hero and short-term manager Brian Horton bought winger Rod Thomas for 25k from Chester in October 1998. He wasn't so-far removed from notching 300 apps. Permanently skint Dick Knight had been given some dosh by Brighton fans and Thomas got labelled as the peoples' player. He made 12 apps in '98/99 and scored 3 goals. In Micky Adams Withdean era revolution, Thomas scored a blinder in that 6-0 demolition of Mansfield on day1 in high summer 1999. Believe it or not he didn't get another goal for Albion in 33 further apps, although received a return red card in defeat at Field Mill to square the circle. As you can imagine Adams wasn't too pleased and was forever trying to curtail the little no.11 from using ball-skills etc in our third. During Brighton's successful term when gaining elevation to div2 in 2001, Thomas now wearing no.16 made 2 league appearances as sub very early in this 2nd W'dean era season. He was on the bench for a couple of months, then in reserves, then... out with the washing, if not out of contract by springtime.

W'dean Goalkeepers '99-'11 Back to Top
WITHDEAN ERA 1999 - 2011
Brezovan, Ankergren, Poke and Walker 2010 - 2011 League One.
Michael Poke came from So'ton during pre-season to be back-up to Peter Brezovan. However, the big Slovenian busted his wrist before start of hostilities and Gus Poyet had a problem. Poke played in friendlies and an early Lge Cup tie but appeared shaky. On day1 GP got in Casper Ankergren, previously of Leeds, to be new no.1. He done good and got PoM for September with clean sheets. Brezovan was reserve keeper, so didn't return to 1st 11 duties until FA Cup r1/2 and respective replays, then r3,4&5. Ankergren kept goalies jersey for league fixtures and done good, getting a second PoM for March as BHA romped to 8 straight wins when leading L1 by a clear margin. Poke and Walker (who did a spell on loan) turned out in reserves and for BHA seconds in the Sussex Senior Cup competition.

Kuipers, Smith and Brezovan 2009 - 2010 League One.
Graeme Smith (no.22) arrived in pre-season '09 from Motherwell, with good reports from Mark McGhee. Russ Slade was now gaffer and Tony Godden keeper coach. GS got an early chance between sticks when Kuipers (no.1) was sent-off up north. Unfortunately loadsa goals went in for all comps and worryingly, continued to whenever the Scot got selected later. In New Year, new boss Gus Poyet sorted out his squad and Smith went back to Scots lg, going to Hibs on a free. GP got Peter Brezovan (no.29) for free (ex-Swindon) and he looked and got the part straight away when FDM was crocked. MK next resumed duties for 2010 but lost his place in Feb. By end of that month he'd busted a finger in training and was kaput again. Brezovan became numero uno by default but done good anyway. Danny Naisbitt (no.35) came in from Histon as cover coz Poyet wouldn't risk kid keepers Mitch Walker (no.13) or Josh Pelling (no.31). Michel didn't get a new contract but a job off the field was offered. Also his testimonial to be played at Falmer - fitting tribute to a loyal servant. FDM soon signed for Crawley Town as Reds numero uno under old on-loan Boston boss Steve Evans.

Kuipers and Sullivan. 2008 - 2009 League One.
Goal-keepers seem to go on forever so there was plenty of time for FDM to get his old numerical allocation of no.1 back and continue first choice on the team-sheet. So, as that season's anticipated if not expected success faltered, Sullivan (no.13) got a chance at last. He made a debut in '08/9 when FDM got injured. Could he hold the shirt? According to (no.36) ex-coach Paul Crichton (who left for Norwich) yes. But in that great football pyramid, including those holding their gloved hands up, who could really tell? Big Danish kid-keeper Mikkel Andersen (no.40) came in on loan from Reading to hold the fort during an injury crisis. Youth goalie Josh Pelling (no.37) was previously also added to the squad. Sullivan got released and some think he got a raw deal in a year of change.

Kuipers and Flinders. 2006 - 2008 League One.
Former Dutch Marine Michel Kuipers played in all fixtures in '07/8. Although not so during '06/7 when our ex-no.1 (renumbered no.16), a man allowed to handle the ball under rules and regulations but usually in pre-match practice, made only 14 apps. Wayne Henderson (ex-no.1) transferred to Preston and FDM resumed between posts. Hot Palace youngster Scott Flinders (no.1) then signed for late season, reserve loan-goalie duties and stole into numero uno, making 'one' seem a tad uninformed - from his union colleague's uniliteral perspective. Kuipers probably wondered what actually happened to leave him left alone yet again, when Gods of football miraculously moved those proverbial goal posts. He has however been in this predicament before - on more than one occasion.

Henderson, Chaigneau and Blayney. 2005 - 2006 Championship.
In '05/6 dour Scot Mark McGhee had a goal-keeper problem or two and eventually more. Kuipers was recuperating from injury when that third Championship campaign kicked-off. A certain Wayne Henderson (no.28) arrived direct from Aston Villa, on day one at Derby to keep goal for Brighton. The youthful Irishman said, 'I'm ambitious, I want to make a name for myself as a number one. I'd like to think Brighton could be somewhere I could achieve that.' Inside the opening month a very tall young Frenchman had also come abroad and signed for a years stint in vying for now international custodian's gloves. Florent Chaigneau (no.40) came over from FC Rennes but without a lot of competitive experience, at that time being just twenty one Chaigneau didn't merely dream of a nightmare at Shrewsbury in the League Cup, as Brighton conceded three there in extended cavalier knockout style. Six weeks into the season Alan Blayney (no.23) from N Ireland, also joined via Southampton and effectively became number two between the sticks. Blayney then deputised when Henderson returned to Villa right at the end of October. Kuipers (no.1) had meanwhile made a comeback in reserves and trotted out for Albion in their festive Boxing Day fixture at Withdean. Blayney too had departed as 'on-loans' expired, while Chaigneau resumed warming the bench for a third keeper, in lieu of any further 'entente cordiale' appearances. On a New Year's Day trip to Southampton, after a team-bus altercation concerning manager Mr McGhee and striker Leon Knight (no.7), Chaigneau got to replace Kuipers under the cross-bar at unforgiving St Mary's. Five days later he proffered a goal-mouth Gallic shrug, following a tame exit from an FA Cup round3 tie at Withdean - as McGhee despaired yet again on the hostile Sassenach south-coast of Sussex. Amid these multi-national comings and goings, Kuipers kept goal for two adjacent fixtures before Henderson was reinstalled permanently. Brighton boy Richard Martin (no.13) took over as bench-man, Chaigneau quickly reduced to a forlorn Frenchman, McGhee was the henchman come hangman and who'd be a forgotten Dutchman? McGhee always selected a sub goalie in his match-day sixteen and for '06/7, Henderson assumed king-pin no.1 and Kuipers made no.16 - ironical huh, when unused no.13 was considered unlucky. You know the rest via folklore.

Yelldell, Shaaban and Blayney. 2004 - 2005 Championship.
Previous shenanigans of an in-front of the net kind, ensued during '04/5, following Kuipers shoulder injury versus Forest at W'dean. A giant goalie from Blackburn reserves played for Brighton at Leeds in a pink jersey. This instant impact lasted only three games for David Yelldell (no.23), as fourteen days in Jan-Feb highlighted an off colour on-loan fashion statement. Yelldell had an American father but after little glory, saw more stars than stripes at Albion. Rami Shaaban (no.20) was his immediate replacement and also had foreign connections. He was eligible to play for Sweden and did so in '06 World Cup. However, prior to a short engagement at Brighton, he was recovering from serious injury at Arsenal. Shaaban played the next six games through Feb-Mar, including four consecutive near catastrophic defeats. Brighton fell from a healthy position before the run-in to dispute a desperate dog-fight for survival. Alan Blayney (no.23) was drafted in to stop the rot and try and keep a crucial clean sheet for Brighton to finally get the point. He did save a couple of penalties and saw us to safety. Ben Roberts (no.29) eventually had been forced to retire due to persistent back pains and Blayney was thought of as a likely Championship goalie for consolidating next term.

Roberts and Flitney. 2003 - 2004 League One.
Kuipers (no.1) and Roberts (no.29) had shared handling formalities throughout '03/4 until FDM survived a horrific car smash in late November. Michel was admitted to hospital but sustained relatively minor injuries. Another kid keeper, Ross Flitney (no.31) from Fulham had been called in as cover for two injury prone custodians and made a couple of appearances. Steve Jones (no.31) took over for a brace of matches away from home, when Brighton really struggled to accumulate points on the long road to Wales that term. Roberts got back to fitness as the push for a play-off place intensified. Coach John Keeley (no.32) had even been 16th man over mid-season periods but eventually Kuipers became back-up for an all important run-in and play-offs.

Petterson, Roberts and Beasant. 2002 - 2003 Championship.
During a tough start to life in div1 of '02/3, Andy Petterson (no.30) played eight losing games before FDM resumed between posts. Ben Roberts (no.13) initially visited Brighton as a stand-in after Kuipers was injured in an FA Cup r3 tie at Norwich in Jan, that fateful relegation campaign from tier two. He turned out three times and impressed enough for Steve Coppell to want him permanently in div 2. Meanwhile Dave Beasant (no33) did the 'do' until a cliff-hanger of a finish at Grimsby on the first Sunday in May. He was so old, Keelo refused to coach him but brought up a constant supply of reinvigorating sports drinks, that were intravenously drip-fed prior to springtime Saturday afternoons - allegedly!!

Kuipers, Royce and Cartwright. 2000 - 2002 League Two & One.
In '01/2 and '00/01 back-to-back title winning seasons, Michel was first choice keeper and racked up over 70 apps. Simon Royce (no.31) deputised for six matches after Xmas 2001 in div2. At start of div3 campaign the previous term, Mark Cartwright (no.19) was in goal for a dozen contests. Kuipers (no.1) was an inexperienced import from Bristol Rovers in summer of 2000 and had to establish his place. He did so and proved to be a capable, if not to say long-serving custodian.

Walton & Ormerod. 1999 - 2000 League Two
Micky Adams had two goalies already on BHA books when arriving at Priestfield in April of the '98/99 term. Mark Ormerod (no.1) started a BHA homecoming campaign at Withdean in 1999 as no.1 custodian but soon was left behind the net, rather than in front of it. Mark Walton (no.15) took over between the sticks and made a fist of it on more than one occasion. Adams assumed he would handle everything for a promo season next time - but no. Walton surprisingly signed for Cardiff in pre-season of '00/01, while Ormerod was released. So Adams had to cast around for a keeper with potential.

W'dean 2nd & 3rd Revolutions '08-'11 Back to Top
WITHDEAN ERA... 2008 - 2011 League One.
2nd Revolution '08-'09 League One.
Micky ADAMS returned to BHA in May 2008 following publication of Dean Wilkins retained list. Guy Butters and Paul Reid were let go, along with Kerry Mayo, Gary Hart, Sam Rents and Frenchman David Martot. Adam Hinshelwood was given more time to recover from serious knee injuries. Doug Loft was also retained for '08/9. But Wilkins went too as Adams brought in old bouy Adam Virgo (Celtic), winger Kevin McLeod (Colchester), central defender Colin Hawkins (Coventry) and lb/mf David Livermore (Hull) on free transfers. He also brought back lb Matt Richards on loan from Ipswich. Keeper Michel Kuipers was one remaining from MA's original rev1 squad and then Hart & Mayo re-signed. Adams already knew rb Andy Whing from sky-blue days and a few who'd come thru youth ranks like utility-man Adam El-Abd and forward Jake Robinson. Others from Wilkins successful if various U18 outfits, were goalie John Sullivan, defs Joel Lynch and Wes Fogden, m-f's Dean Cox, Tommy Fraser and Scott Chamberlain, strikers Joe Gatting and Sam Gargan and previous PoY c-d Tommy Elphick. Striker Nicky Forster (capt) was on the books since start of '07/8, while partner Glenn Murray, cmf Steven Thomson and fwd Jonny Dixon joined mid-term when Wilkins revamped a supposed p-o chasing first eleven. Adams added m-f loanees Joe Anyinsah (fwd - Preston), Kevin Thornton (fwd - Coventry), Brad Johnson (mf - Leeds) and Robbie Savage (mf - Derby). Later striker Stuart Fleetwood (Charlton) arrived, after Fogden and Gatting left. Kids Kane Wills, Kane Louis, Dan Royce, Andy Pearson, Steve Brinkhurst and Steve Cook got given their own squad numbers as young pro's. In the Jan '09 transfer window, Adams signed m-f's Chris Birchall (ex-Coventry), Jason Jarrett (Preston), winger Seb Carole (ex-Leeds) and striker Calvin Andrew (Palace) on loan. On day of the deadline he got left back Jim McNulty (Stockport 150k) and striker Craig Davies (Oldham). Then with BHA in bottom four, Adams went in Feb '09 and White & Booker took charge. An injury crisis meant extra bods arrived thru necessity. Lloyd Owusu (fwd - Cheltenham), Matt Heath (c-d - Colchester), Al Bangura (mf - Watford), Mikkel Andersen (gk - Reading) and Gary Borrowdale (lb - QPR) all came in on loan. Russell SLADE then became manager on a short contract from Mar '09. He got in Gary Dicker (mf - Stockport) on loan.
Year10 Squad, 2008 - 2009
1 Kuipers, 2 Whing (PoY), 3 Mayo, 4 Hinshelwood, 5 Lynch (loaned), 6 El-Abd, 7 Cox, 8 Thomson (transferred) then Jarrett, 9 Forster, 10 Thornton (loan) then Birchall, 11, McLeod, 12 Richards later Heath (loan), 13 Sullivan, 14 Livermore (loaned), 15 Hart, 16 Hawkins, 17 Murray, 18 Loft (loaned), 19 Robinson (loaned), 20 Gatting (released) then McNulty (serious injury), 21 Dixon (loaned), 22 Fraser, 23 Virgo, 24 Elphick, 25 Chamberlain (released) then Davies, 26 Fogden (rel) later Fleetwood (loan) then Andrew (short loan), 27 Johnson (loan) then Dicker (loan), 28 Anyinsah (loan) then Carole, 29 Wills, 30 Louis, 31 Royce, 32 Pearson, 33 Gargan, 34 Cook, 35 Brinkhurst, 36 Crichton (GK coach - left), 37 Pelling, 38 Owusu (loan), 39 Bangura (loan), 40 Andersen (gk loan), 41 Borrowdale (loan), 44 Savage (short loan).

3rd Revolution '09-'11 League One.
One way or another things were different for 2009-10. Tony Bloom secured funding for Falmer with a multi-million financial injection. He also took over the chairmanship, while blue & white Knight became President. Within 3 months TB exercised owners rights to power.
SLADE got the boss-job permanently pre-Falmer and swung the axe. He released Mayo, Hinsh, Jarrett, Birchall, Sullivan, Loft, Robinson, Fraser, Carole, Gargan and later Dixon, also four young pro's. Lynch went to Forest as expected. But Owusu signed for Adelaide. So he signed Dicker permanently, then got m-f Matt Thornhill (Forest) on loan. Next came defender James Tunnicliffe (Stockport), plus winger Mark Wright (MKD), followed by cmf Andrew Crofts (Gillingham) and g-k Graeme Smith (Motherwell). In pre-season came striker Liam Dickinson (Derby), defender Jake Wright (Crawley), m-f kid Jamie Smith (CP) and m-f general Alan Navarro (MKD). Later came wingers Elliott Bennett (Wolves) and Arron Davies (Forest - loan). Kid Mitch Walker was added to GK union. Right back Gavin Hoyte also came in on loan from Arsenal reserves. Slade went in early Nov '09 and Bloom made another appointment. Gus POYET became manager and now got promoted to numero uno coz previously he'd only made assistant. Keeper Peter Brezovan (Swindon) got here before Xmas '09. In New Year '10 rb Inigo Calderon signed from Alaves in Spain. Then Seb Carole came back week to week for a third spell. Also lb Marcos Painter joined from Swansea on loan. In Jan transfer window, striker Chris Holroyd came in from Cambridge. Followed later by winger Kaz LuaLua on loan from Newcastle. Next came m-f's on loan Diego Arismendi via Stoke, then a little later Lee Hendrie out of Derby. On March final loan xfer day, forward Ashley Barnes (Plymouth) and keeper Danny Naisbit (Histon) also joined a revised squad. BHA youngsters Lewis Dunk and Jake Caskey got pro terms and joined the squad at the death. Jake became the youngest player to play for the first team.
Year 11 Squad, 2009 - 10
1 Kuipers (injured), 2 Whing (loaned out), 3 McNulty (loaned out), 4 Elphick, 5 Wright J (loaned out), 6 El-Abd, 7 Cox, 8 Navarro, 9 Forster (loaned out), 10 Dickinson (loaned out), 11 McLeod (transfer), then LuaLua (on loan), 12 Tunnicliffe (loaned out), 13 Walker, 14 Livermore (left), then Arismendi (on loan), 15 Hart, 16 Hawkins (long injury), 17 Murray, 18 Dicker, 19 Wright M (transfer), later Davies A (short loan), then Calderon. 20 Crofts, 21 Thornhill (short loan), later Carole, 22 Smith G (transfer), later Painter (on loan), 23 Virgo, 24 Smith J, 25 Davies C (loaned out), 26 Bennett, 27 Hoyte (on loan), 28 Barker, 29 Brezovan, 30 Cook, 31 Pelling, 32 Brinkhurst, 33 Holroyd, 34 Hendrie (on loan), 35 Naisbitt (on loan), 36 Barnes (on loan), 37 Dunk, 38 Caskey.

Gus POYET didn't renew contracts of Forster (Brentford), Cox (Orient), Virgo (Yeovil), Kuipers (Crawley), Pelling and Brinkhurst (E Boro). Crofts transferred to Norwich early in close season. Hawkins (Fingal) also left, while Wright went to Oxford, Dickinson got a job at Barnsley and Davies penned for Chesterfield. McNulty went back on-loan to Scunny and Tunnicliffe to Bristol R for season.
GP re-signed Brezovan (injured), Smith, Cook, Dunk and goalie Walker. Painter signed full terms before pre-season. Calderon didn't initially pen what was again offered and this deal only got completed early in June. Michael Poke (So'ton) said yes to poss no.2 keeper spot soon afterwards. Just prior to pre-season, midfielder Agustin Battipiedi and forward Cristian Baz both signed from Argentina div3. C-mf Matt Sparrow came in via Scunthorpe. Then Barnes (Plymouth) made his move permanent in first days of July. After first local friendly, c-d Gordon Greer joined from Swindon. Then Bulgarian m-f Radostin Kishishev got a year deal. Spurs youngster, Yaser Kasim got on board too. Just before the first fixture, great Dane, Casper Ankergren came in as no.1 keeper. Next came m-f Liam Bridcutt (Chelsea) on short loan as back-up. By Aug transfer window, GP added winger Kaz LuaLua (loan) and strikers, Norwegian Torbjorn Agdestein and Spaniard Francisco Sandaza. Mauricio Taricco resumed training as stand-by l-b. In Nov, striker Chris Wood came on loan from WBA. In the New Year transfer window, winger Craig Noone arrived from Plymouth.
Year 12 Squad, 2010 - 11
1 Brezovan (injured), 2 Whing (left), 3 Greer, 4 Elphick, 5 Battipiedi, 6 El-Abd, 7 Bennett, 8 Navarro (long injury), 9 Barnes, 10 Sparrow, 11 Baz, 12 LuaLua (long injury), 13 Walker, 14 Calderon, 15 Hart, 16 Ankergren, 17 Murray, 18 Dicker, 19 Poke, 20 Holroyd (loaned), 21 Sandaza (injuries), 22 Painter, 23 Agdestein, 24 Smith, 25 Kishishev, 26 Bridcutt, 27 Taricco, 28 Caskey, 29 Kasim, 30 Cook (loaned), 31 Noone, 32, 33, 34 McNulty (long injury), 35 Tunnicliffe (loaned), 36, 37 Dunk, 38, 39 Wood.

W'dean interim period '06-'08 Back to Top
WITHDEAN ERA 2006 - 2008 League One.
Times surely were a changing.
'06/7 began with Albion back in tier three and Skint as usual to say the least. Wilkins quickly assumed managerial duties and it was make do and mend on the squad front. Striker Alex Revell arrived for day1, followed by c-d Georges Santos. Youth products continued to be developed, although a few loan signings appeared to boot. Sam Rents, Wes Fogden, Scott Chamberlain, Tommy Fraser and Paul Hinshelwood continued the rise of BHA kids. Aussie mf Nick Ward joined, with mf Tony Stokes and c-d Keith Lowe as initial loanees. They were later replaced by winger Alistair John, striker Bas Savage, defenders Andy Whing and Zoumana Bakayogo. Others came in like forward Sam Williams, mf Dean Bowditch, later defender Joe O'Cearuill, French middleman Alexis Bertin, goalie Scot Flinders and c-d Zesh Rehman made up a complement of borrowed players. Nathan Elder went full time from non-league.
In '07/8 hitman Nicky Forster signed like back Andy Whing and winger David Martot. Midfielder George O'Callaghan entered the fray on loan, like back Matt Richards. In a flurry of January transfer activity, strikers Glen Murray and Jonny Dixon, mf Steven Thomson and Shane McFaul arrived. Later mf men Dean Bowditch, Ian Westlake and Thiery Racon came down on loan. Sam Gargan was new striking kid on the block.
Years 8-9 Squad 2006 - 2008
1 Henderson (gk) later Flinders (loan gk), 2 Reid then Whing, 3 Mayo, 4 A Hinshelwood, 5 Lynch, 6 El-Abd, 7 Frutos then Cox, 8 Ward (loan) then Revell later Westlake (loan), 9 Hart then Forster, 10 Oatway then O'Callaghan (loan) later Thomson, 11 Hammond later Bowditch much later Racon (loans), 12 Carpenter then Hart, 13 Sullivan (gk), 14 Butters, 15 Revell then Reid, 16 Kuipers (gk), 17 Sullivan (gk) then Savage later Murray, 18 Martin (gk) then Rents, 19 Robinson, 20 Gatting, 21 Molango later Rehman (loan), then Elder later Dixon, 22 Kazim-Richards later Williams, Bowditch, Bertin (loans) then Fraser, 23 Loft, 24 Santos then Elphick, 25 Breach then Chamberlain, 26 Elphick then Fogden, 27 Rents then Martot, 28 Cox then Richards (loan), 29 P Hinshelwood, 30 Fraser, 31 Chamberlain then McFaul, 32 Fogden, 33 Lowe later Whing, Bakayogo (3 loans) then Gargan, 34 Stokes later John (loans), Savage, 35 Elder, 36 O'Cearuill (loan).

At very end of a near-miss campaign in '07/8, when Brighton finished immediately below play-off places, several people lost jobs at the Albion. Dean Wilkins had got a side developed from youth players, strengthened by pro signings and bolstered with loan imports, to perform to good League1 standard. However it was all a bit 'mix and match' and various fringe players made any number of appearances, as Wilkins second season squad changed personnel at regular intervals. During the January transfer window, comings and goings had a detrimental effect on performances, which turned into a sort of 'in and out' season. Long serving trio Kerry Mayo, Gary Hart and Guy Butters were released among a general clear-out prompted by BHA management. Paul Reid was also let go, while others seemingly less skilful got to be retained. Within days Wilkins also was relieved of his position and Micky Adams returned to this club as boss pre-Falmer.

Kerry Mayo (League Two & One, Championship)
It began in Goldstone death throes before 1997, then after what seemed like a flash, Kerry Mayo had actually been at Brighton for twelve years. He received a testimonial for continuous service during the Withdean era prior to start of '07/8. Kerry had by then completed 410 appearances, coming on as sub in the last fixture of that term at our decade-long temporary home. Mayo no.3 was Brighton's usual left back for bulk of seasons but also played in central defence or midfield on occasion. He got to be a regular in the back-back title years of 2001-2002. When Albion were fighting to stay in div1 of '02/3 under Steve Coppell, Kerry had a super season at higher standard. Coppell said, 'he's had a great survival instinct and you must have to stay so long with one club.' In subsequent seasons competition for the place, loss of form or injuries, never stopped Mayo trying to regain selection in the sixteen. In bouts of reserve matches he often took on the senior pro role, remained enthusiastic and a good example to developing youngsters. This 2nds teamsheet was prior to most recent 2008 resurrection; Sullivan, Fogden, Mayo, Wills, Butters, Lynch, Robinson, Loft, Gatting, Dixon, Hart. He'd seemingly bounced back so many times, suggestions of rubber insoles were muted in those nationwide dressing rooms. Mayo said, 'playing for the club is a job and it pays my bills. But being a supporter, I want Falmer to come to life just like anyone else.' The Ginger Prince left on good terms, although Falmer was only a dream as those working years quickly ticked away. During pre-season of '08/9 Micky Adams offered him a job again, nine years after the Withdean era began. Mayo had injuries and didn't figure, so it was no real surprise when he was released a second time. Still, 400 odd games for BHA was quite an achievement in an incredible decade.

Gary Hart (League Two & One, Championship)
As records go, Gary Hart was another stalwart to be given a testimonial match, albeit after termination of a 378 app career. He was on loan to Havant & Waterlooville during '07/8 and Charlie Oatway was glad to have him there. Ex-Albion midfield destroyer Charlie said, 'Gary shared the success that's come the team's way during the last ten years.' That included 3 promotions and 3 terms in the Championship. Dean Wilkins said, 'his versatility and willingness to play in a number of positions have made him a huge hit with supporters.' Hart had some up and down seasons, just like the club but his hay-day was probably at no.9 as a live-wire striker way back in old div3. That he adapted to higher level and turned out in other positions is part of a pukka pro's CV. Micky Adams converted Gary to the right flank after adopting a single striker shape. Hart had come initially from non-league and bagged 12 Albion goals in '98/99 to be joint top scorer. He chipped in with a few each season as BHA rose through ranks by '04/5. Mark McGhee said, 'he could always be relied upon to give one hundred per cent at all times. His work rate and attitude were always excellent.' Gary was tried at right back in reserves combination games and soon had that position in the first team. Brighton struggled in tier two but he soldiered on while a new order evolved. Opportunities became limited beyond '06/7, during development of a young side from a very good youth squad. Hart wanted to give more to BHA but time finally ran out. OGH said, 'I've had almost one manager per year. In just about every season we've been pressing for promotion or fighting relegation. Life has never been dull.' You could say that again. Hart broke a leg at Peterborough in 2002 but got stuck in again subsequently, especially when Albion were up against it versus superior opposition. He liked a good old scrap for sure. Micky Adams offered Harty a lifeline for '08/9 and truth is apparently stranger than fiction. OGH got injured but came back to play a significant part in the great escape under Russ Slade. He offered the old no.9 a contract and we all love a happy ending. Hart also played bit parts under Gus Poyet and was still up for it approaching '10/11. Gary Hart was released by BHA at end of that campaign - Albion's last season at Withdean.
Footnote; Hart was invited to play in the Sussex Senior Cup final at the Amex and scored the first goal there to boot. And so yet another page turns.

Guy Butters (Championship, League One)
One time Spurs, Pompey and Gillingham defender Guy Butters, was a veteran who played over 200 times for Brighton when many others would have dropped to lower level for an easier existence. He said, 'I'm not sure how many games I played down the years.' Introduced to fill a centre-half role by Martin Hinshelwood at Portsmouth in a traumatic start after promotion to div1 in '02/3, Guy played only six games at no.6. Butters certainly was then quickly struck out of favour that term. He appeared once under new mngr Steve Coppell - his first and Butts last. Typically here is a reserves sheet for Mar '03 v Portsmouth - ironical huh; Packham, Hinshelwood, Jones, Pethick, Butters, Hammond, Wilkinson, Rogers, Hart, Barrett, Piercy. GB also did a stint at Barnet on loan. After relegation to lower league for '03/4, B'ton immediately won a place back in the Championship and now, Butters no.14 was incredibly voted player of the season. Mark McGhee said, 'Guy has been fantastic. When I came here there was a question mark over him. It has gone the right way by committing himself to make sure he is in the right shape and by the way he has played.' GB next turned out for 2 terms in defence at tier two, although needing to use his head more rather than legs. Butters said, 'I loved the big games in the Championship. To survive was nothing short of a miracle considering finances at the club. We were going to grounds where everyone was writing us off and coming away with wins. We'd be defending for our lives and then everyone would come into the changing-room and just be laughing. At Brighton you always had some excitement, year in year out.' Guy maintained match fitness and was a regular rearguard selection until '07/8, when mostly sub or emergency cover in League1. Butts did some coaching badges and trundled off fairly happily to Oatway's H&W non-league outfit for a bonus season. He was sad not to say goodbye properly but was offered a job in BHA community services by Dick Knight in pre-season of '08/9. It's a cruel world outside football. Butters turned out for Lewes on-loan with Danny Cullip from Feb '09. He tried his hand at management with Winchester City in 2010.

Paul Reid (Championship, League One)
After a brace of demanding years previously, Paul Reid suffered two long term knee injuries that wrecked seasons '06/7 and '07/8. He was spotted at Bradford City reserves when Brighton were scouting for late additions to a side chasing a play-off place in '03/4 and was given squad no.34. He then got the no.16 shirt for '04/5. An Australian from near Sydney, Reid was an attacking midfielder but during a couple of seasons in the Championship got converted to no.2 at right back. By May 2006 He'd made around 80 lg career apps and scored 4 goals. In Sept 2006 a busted cruciate kept our Aussie down under for almost another year. For season '07/8 Paul played with no.15 on his back, after returning to full fitness. He made a few starts in m-f when others left and a spot was vacant. A second ligament prob during Jan 2008 turned his world upside down again. He'd married, settled in and liked Brighton, eventually taking British citizenship to boot. He later said, 'you need a run of games where you are given a bit of a chance and I haven't found that this year. I thought being versatile and filling different positions has benefited the club. Now it seems like that has been one of my downfalls.' The normally even tempered antipodean anglophile left with criticism of Dean Wilkins management style and had much sympathy from sections of Brighton fans. His perceived role as something of a playmaker never developed while BHA were struggling in tier two and latterly only treading water keeping heads up in tier three. You might say the ball never really broke for a thinking player, who could see a pass and get it on target. Those qualities were in short supply in lower leagues. Reid quickly returned to Australia with Adelaide and the climate was a lot warmer there too.

PS: Dean Wilkins said, 'It is the nature of the game that to be competitive we have to make tough decisions. It may sound like hollow words but I would like to thank each of the players for their professionalism and service and wish them well for the future.'
Dick Knight appointed Micky Adams merely hours afterwards and said, 'we are expanding the managerial team with a very experienced person at the top of it. We need to make this move now to ensure the club moves forward on the playing side at the same pace as it does off the pitch.' Wilkins was offered a coaching job but parted company with the Albion well over a month later. Mayo, Hart, Butters, Reid and Wilkins all loved this club. That was not enough apparently to ensure being treated like part of an extended family. Adams returned to the fold but knew full well, achieving promotion and Championship consolidation were the blood ties that definitely bind. Adams parted company with BHA by mutual consent in Feb '09. QED.

W'dean Championship Years '02-'06 Back to Top
WITHDEAN ERA 2002 - 2006 Championship & League One (divs 1 & 2).
Old Guard Go - going, nearly gone...
Albion reached div1 in 2002 but were back in div2 a year later. Martin Hinshelwood got cent-half Guy Butters, strikers Paul Kitson, John Piercy and loans Graham Barrett and keeper Andy Petterson to the club in his spell at start of div1. He also re-introduced kids Dean Hammond, Dan Harding, Chris McPhee, Adam Virgo, Dan Marney, Shaun Wilkinson, Will Packham, Adam Hinshelwood and Adam El-Abd to the squad. Steve Coppell then brought some of his players in to try and survive at tier two for rest of '02/3. These were c-ds Dean Blackwell and later on loan Ivar Ingimarsson, mf Simon Rodger and borrowed Steve Sidwell, also later keepers Ben Roberts and Dave Beasant and striker Tony Rougier (loans). For 2003 strikers Leon Knight, Darius Henderson (loan), plus goalies Ben Roberts and Ross Flitney and mf Zesh Rehman (loans) were added by Coppell. Jake Robinson and Dan Beck elevated from youth level. Mark McGhee took over as gaffer and got mf Mark Yeates, striker Trevor Benjamin and gk Steve Jones on board via loan system. Later he obtained services of Chris Iwelumo (loan) and Paul Reid for the '03/4 run-in and play-offs. In '04/5 for a 2nd Championship campaign, Alexis Nicolas and Darren Currie joined midfield, Albert Jarrett and Maheta Molango up front and kid Chris May became sub goalie. Much later keepers David Yelldell, Rami Shaaban and Alan Blayney arrived on loan. Toward end of the season c-d Joe Dolan (loan), strikers Steve Claridge (loan) and Mark McCammon swelled numbers. Youngsters Joel Lynch, Dean Cox and Gary Elphick also got allocated shirts.
Years 4-6 Squad 2002 - 2005
1 Kuipers, 2 Watson, 3 Mayo, 4 Cullip, 5 Blackwell then Dolan (loan), 6 Pethick then Nicolas, 7 Knight, 8 Rogers then Rodger, 9 Hart, 10 Oatway, 11 Brooker then Henderson later Yeates (loans), then Currie, 12 Carpenter, 14 Butters, 15 Jones, 16 Reid, 17 Wilkinson later Benjamin (loan), then Molango, 18 Packham then Marney then Jarrett, 19 Virgo, 20 Melton later Ingimarsson (loan), then Piercy later Shaaban (loan gk), 21 McPhee, 22 Hammond, 23 Lee then Yelldell & Blayney (loan gks), 24 Hinshelwood, 25 Zamora then Claridge (loan) later McCammon, 26 Harding, 27 Kitson then Beck later Elphick, 28 Barrett (loan) then El-Abd, 29 Roberts (gk), 30 Petterson (loan gk) then Iwelumo (loan) then Robinson, 31 Flitney later S Jones (loan gks) then Cox, 32 Keeley (coach), 33 Sidwell (loan) later Beasant (loan) then May (gk), 34 Webb then Rehman (loan) then Lynch.

'05/6 was a pivotal year for changes to the previous back-to-back promotions shirt number list. Michel Kuipers eventually lost no.1 due to serious injury in January 2005. Paul Watson no.2 and Nathan Jones no.15 were let go in May '05. No.4 Danny Cullip had been transferred in December 2004 and no.10 Charlie Oatway got crocked at Xmas a year later. That left no.3 Kerry Mayo, no.9 Gary Hart and no.12 Richard Carpenter soldiering on as representitives of a fast fading team-sheet from a truly inspiring first few years of the Withdean era.
Mark McGhee brought in Wayne Henderson and Florent Chaigneau as new custodians, plus Jason Dodd and Paul McShane to bolster defence. Coca-cola kid Colin Kazim-Richards transfered in via competition money, with Argentinian Federico Turienzo, plus French wingers Seb Carole and Alex Frutos. Kids Jake Robinson, Joel Lynch, Dean Cox, Richard Martin and John Sullivan (gks), Gary & Tommy Elphick, Joe Gatting and Chris Breach got squad recognition. Doug Loft from non-league and Gifton Noel-Williams got in on the act for the run-in.
Year 7 Squad 2005 - 2006
1 Kuipers, 2 Reid, 3 Mayo, 4 Hinshelwood, 5 Dodd, 6 Nicolas, 7 Knight later Noel-Williams (loan), 8 Turienzo, 9 Hart, 10 Oatway, 11 Hammond, 12 Carpenter, 13 Martin (gk), 14 Butters, 15 McCammon, 16 McPhee, 17 Carole, 18 Jarrett, 19 Frutos, 20 El-Abd, 21 Robinson, 22 Kazim-Richards, 23 Blayney (loan gk) later Loft, 24 McShane (loan), 26 Breach, 27 G Elphick, 28 Henderson (loan gk), 29 Cox, 30 T Elphick, 31 Sulivan (gk), 33 Gatting, 34 Lynch, 40 Chaigneau (loan gk).

W'dean Old Squad '99-'02 Back to Top
WITHDEAN ERA 1999 - 2000 League Two (div3).
Back in 1999 Brentford completed their programme at that old div3 (league2) grade as champions, while Albion actually celebrated too but bizarrely in 17th place. Our 'home' match at borrowed Gillingham on Boxing Day '98, was witnessed by nearly five thousand against a beatable (when they travelled away from W London) Bees side, with victory for Albion 3-1. Micky ADAMS had come on board that following Spring at Priestfield and for once kept us out of 23rd position, 'held' precariously in each of those three terrible previous seasons. He then put together a side fit for a new era at the Withdean and as they say in Sussex, 'the rest is BHA history'. Adams brought in Charlie Oatway, Paul Watson and Darren Freeman from an old century Brentford clear-out for '99/00. He later also picked up ex-Bees Danny Cullip, who'd recovered from a serious knee injury and twelve months down the line, Bob Booker as Assistant Manager for our centenary year through '00/01. Andy Crosby, Jamie Campbell, Darren Carr, Chris Wilder and Ryan Palmer (defenders), plus Dave Cameron, Aidan Newhouse and Warren Aspinall (forwards) were also initial imported additions to Adams revolution. Keepers Mark Ormerod and Mark Walton, defenders Keith McPherson, Gary Hobson and Ross Johnson, mf Andy Arnott and Paul Armstrong, forwards Rod Thomas and Scott Ramsay, plus fringe players Danny Davis, Ben Andrews and John Westcott all survived Adams 1999 pre-Withdean cull. Danny Marney elevated from youth ranks, as did Chris McPhee, Shaun Wilkinson, Dean Hammond and Will Packham. Ian Culverhouse was semi-retired and reserve team coach, while another senior pro Martin Ling, arrived in March 2000 for the run-in. Lorenzo Pinamonte was a big Italian hope up front who left before Bobby Zamora and Paul Brooker arrived on loan.
Year1 Squad 1999 - 2000
1 Ormerod (GK), 2 Watson, 3 Campbell, 4 McPherson, 5 Carr, 6 Hobson later Brooker (loan), 7 Freeman, 8 Rogers, 9 Hart, 10 Oatway, 11 Thomas, 12 Cameron, 14 Arnott later Marney, 15 Walton (GK), 16 Johnson later Ling, 17 Armstrong, 18 Palmer, 19 Mayo, 20 Westcott, 21 Davis, 22 Ramsay, 23 Andrews 24 Crosby, 25 Newhouse later Zamora (loan), 26 Wilder, 27 Cullip, 28 Aspinall, 30 Packham (GK), 31 Culverhouse, 32 Wilkinson, 33 McPhee, 34 Hammond, 35 Pinamonte (loan).

Paul Rogers (League Two & One)
After pro days were completed, Paul Rogers became a BHA manager - er, in the sales and commercial dept. That's because he's too clever for his own boots! Dick Knight gave him a job in 2003 when Dodge was making numbers up with the playing squad under Steve Coppell. Prior to that disappointing season in div1, Rogers had been club captain and made 118 starts at lower level. Micky Adams brought him to Brighton in 1999, having persuaded the ex-financial trader away from Wigan. He led Seagulls out onto summer green at Withdean for the very first time, against Forest for a homecoming friendly and never looked back. At end of this inaugral season, Rogers had all but been ever present and scored 8 league goals with no.8 on his back. He was also approaching 300 games as a pro, which began late during his mid twenties. Those two seasons that followed and saw back-to-back championships, crowned a career where previously he had held silverware up for Wigan in their emergence toward higher grade football. In '00/01 Brighton initially struggled to secure many points but played better in a League Cup tie at the Den. Paul said, 'after the first few matches playing 442 when results weren't the best for us, the gaffer changed formation (451) for the Millwall game. That gave me more licence to get forward with Chippy and Charlie behind me - it was quite a fluid formation.' Again he'd played in all but one fixture as Albion stormed to head div3. A year later and almost a case of deja vu when BHA went up a second time running, although Rogers was sidelined toward the run-in. Peter Taylor introduced Junior Lewis (no.6) and that rather limited selection in central midfield. On hearing of promotion off the bounce, Rogers said, 'at start of the season, realistically we thought about mid table and pushing for play-offs but continued on a roll.' He went on to turnout for Worthing FC to get a foot in, while pushing a BHA pen to keep his hand in. With Falmer arriving, Dodge got a super managers job with Albion Commercial - oh yes! He was heavily involved with promotion and sale of hospitality and seating for the Amex stadium at Falmer.

Charlie Oatway (League Two & One, Championship)
For the record, Charlie Oatway was Albion's no.10 for 8 seasons, although for the last one and a half didn't make an appearance in blue & white. Charlie was a regular during div3 & div2 back-to-back titles (2001-2), play-off promotion season (2003) and also in the Championship. In 1999 Micky Adams got him to Withdean with Paul Watson (no.2) from Brentford for start of an era. Oatway had also spent some time at Torquay. Being a combative central midfielder with a destroyer role, he picked up several short term injuries as part and parcel of his job. But he suffered a broken ankle at Withdean on Boxing Day 2005 and was subjected to a series of set-backs during rehabilitation and physiotherapy. Although Brighton struggled at tier two, Oatway was then having a half decent season in '05/6. He wasn't an ordinary player, reaching 227 league apps and was an extraordinary bloke. Charlie didn't score many but liked Plymouth, getting a brace there in 1999 in div3 and a consolation in a heavy Championship defeat in '04/5. Oatway was adaptable in tackling the toughest, cleverest or most skillful - he'd kick 'em all. Just before start of the League1 '07/8 campaign he got crocked again in a friendly and it was serious enough to end his FL career. Dick Knight said, 'Charlie joined us as part of Micky Adams revolution and has been an effervescent and inspirational presence ever since. It is sad that after all his hard recovery work over the past eighteen months, injury forced his retirement.' Knight installed Oatway as a member of Albion in the Community team straightaway. Charlie said, 'I feel I can improve the club in certain areas, so I'll be giving it my best. No different from when I was on the pitch.' Oatway was involved in polishing up basic reading and writing skills during sessions with BHA education schemes, so had firsthand experience of this award winning project. Apart from this important work, if not to say calling, he went on to join Havant & Waterlooville as assistant manager to boot. He was popular with squad and fans alike and served this club very well indeed. Before too long Charlie was back, helping bolster morale among reserves and generally being a nuisance in all departments. He was also part of Hinshelwood's coaching team under caretaker management in Nov '09. Not much later CO became CO of coaches when Poyet & co arrived. Suddenly he was 1st 11 coach & reserve team manager and all. He published his life story in 2011 and all proceeds went to Albion in the Community.

Paul Watson (League Two & One)
One of a group of players that initially came to Brighton in 1999, Paul Watson was an integral part of Micky Adams revolution. Paul Rogers (no.8), Andy Crosby (no.24), plus from Brentford like Watson, Charlie Oatway (no.10) and Darren Freeman (no.7) all also arrived to kick-start the Withdean era. He played at right back and throughout a six season career at Albion always held squad no.2. In their third promo campaign of '03/4, Paul sustained injury during February 2004 and didn't play again that term. It was unfortunately start of going downhill. He had virtually been ever present over four successful seasons previously bar odd niggles and suspensions. Being predominately left footed, he bagged several goals from set pieces on the right and equally important, numerous assists for Bobby Zamora's record breaking strikes. Mark McGhee was later playing him in midfield after some problems with maintaining full fitness, following a tough term in div1. Watson resumed in McGhee's Championship squad a further nine months later, having suffered troubles with pain in both feet. Unfortunately Watto started only one fixture at beginning of 2005 and three subs apps in all. He was released when '04/5 finished, recording 197 apps and scoring 14 goals. In fact his last goal was at Port Vale in the last game before BHA were promoted as back-to-back champions in 2002. Paul Watson came from Hastings and was a Brighton fan as well. He played at Gillingham but met up with Micky Adams at Fulham, then going on to Brentford with his ex-player-manager. Of his own special dead-ball skills he said, 'to be honest a lot are the same free kicks and corners that I'd been doing since at Fulham so I've got a bit used to them. The quick ones I took with Bobby was just between him and me. We'd make eye contact and if I'd put it in the right place, nine times out of ten Bobby put it away.' Watson was last seen as a Crawley sub in the Sussex Senior Cup final of May '08. He was released by the Blue Square Prem outfit soon afterwards. Incidentally he'd come on at left back and looked quite ok against a new generation. Paul continued to play at non-league level in Sussex. He rejoined BHA in community footy coaching and took his tickets. In 2009 Watto became asst squad trainer. He had always been interested in sports science and after-all, spent some time on ex-physio Mal Stuart's treatment table! PW was latterly an integral part of BHA's comprehensive medical team, including Jim Joyce, Kim Eaton and Matt (stretch) Miller.

Danny Cullip (League Two & One, Championship)
For a central defender not known for much up the other end, Danny Cullip scored late in his debut at Withdean on 18 Sept 1999 and jubilantly ran toward elevated A block to celebrate. Micky Adams had acquired him on loan from Brentford, following comeback from knee ligament damage. Within a month Danny signed a 50k deal, which was big money for cash-strapped Albion in those days. He quickly established in a homecoming side at no.27 and despite an indifferent Seagulls team term, was given player of the season award for 2000 with genuine displays. Cullip got the no.4 shirt thereafter, while other centre-halfs came and went. Danny played alongside Andy Crosby (no.6) as Brighton stormed to top of div3 in 2001 and with Simon Morgan (no.5), likewise in div2 for the subsequent successful season of 2002. After a typical fighting performance in Brighton's first stab at div1, Cullip was again voted fans favourite following unlucky relegation in 2003. During a turbulent year when Albion struggled in the Championship of '04/5, Cullip was transferred to Sheff Utd for 150k prior to Xmas. Mark McGhee said, 'every week there seems to be a new obstacle put in the club's way which affects the stadium, finances and ultimately the team that runs out on the pitch.' Danny deliberated, 'as I said to the Chairman, it wasn't all about money. At 29 it was too good an opportunity to turn down.' Apart from being a dependable and tough tackling defender, DC or Driscoll as he was known (ask Oatway) used to chip in with a goal here and there. Mostly they were headers from corners, like one that won the div3 title on a night to remember. Occasionally he let fly with boots too, as at Portsmouth, when div1 appeared harder for our team but well within his capabilities. Cullip's career peaked at Brighton with 220 apps and he played at Forest in '06/7 and again Withdean for Gillingham in '07/8. He was ploughing a centre-backs trade in non-league at Lewes when dropping out of FL. Later to become a leading light there. Danny worked for Albion in the Community and retired from playing due to injury in season '9/10.

Darren Freeman (League Two)
Brighton hosted a div3 home fixture against Exeter with a noon k-o on 3 January 2000 for one of the first new millennium matches. This gave advantage to a team that had scored 21 times in year1 at homecoming Withdean and guess what? Darren Freeman netted the nationwide initial score of 2000 and removed his no.7 stripes to expose a personal new century, numero uno message written on a T-shirt. Giant Italian striker Lorenzo Pinamonte (no.35) also notched as first foreigner, while BHA won 4-2 during a one in a thousand contest. It wasn't the first time Freeman had hit headlines for six, actally bagging a hat-trick on day1 in a Micky Adams inspired and motivated 6-0 opening to the Withdean era. Adams had got local boy Darren from Brentford and along with other imports, revamped Albion in front of 6000 each fortnight in north Brighton suburbs. Freeman completed 37 league apps, scoring 12 goals as a sort of aux centre foward. He was also booked four times before being sent off twice - all prior to middle of November! Hernia problems the following term of '00/01 curtailed Darren's record to 15 lg apps, with only 5 starts. He was forced to retire after pre-season of 2001. Many moons later he was manager at Whitehawk, when that club had a FA Vase cup run in winter of 2010. He hoped to oversee a team playing at Withdean in 2011 while new facilities were built at East Brighton.

Andy Crosby (League Two)
Allocated no.24 in the 1999 inaugural season, due to late signing from Chester, Andy Crosby eventually established an effective c-d partnership with (no.27) Danny Cullip. This season of '99/00 was innovative, not only for beginning the Withdean era but also in serialising squad numbering and 5 subs on the bench. Anyway Crosby racked up 35 league apps (Cullip 32) against strong competition for div3 places. (no.5) Darren Carr got to 19, (no.4) Keith McPherson 25, (no.6) Gary Hobson 6 and (no.16) Ross Johnson 9. An enhanced Albion fit for a promotion challenge in '00/01, saw now no.6 Crosby on 34 apps vie with (no.23) Matt Wicks 24 to be alongside (no.4) Cullip 38. (no.5) Carr made merely 2 apps before disappearing. Cullip and Crosby collected a red card apiece but also champ's medals in May 2001. Andy certainly deserved his fourth tier accolade of impressed metal, so it was something of a surprise when Simon Morgan (no.5) came straight in at c-d for a div2 back-to-back promo push. Crosby was left out in the proverbial cold and like Wicks too, done a runner before winter proper. He moved back up north and enjoyed a half decent career playing for Scunthorpe, including a rearguard season struggling in the Championship. He became assitant manager there as Scunny bounced back from L1 via play-offs. in autumn of 2010, Crozza moved back south again to So'ton, joining old Iron boss Nigel Adkins in L1 management there.

WITHDEAN ERA 2000 - 2002 League One (div2).
ADAMS assembled a group of players that enhanced those remaining in 2000 and went on to win dual championships, div3 in 2001 and then div2 for 2002. Peter TAYLOR who took over as boss in 2001 did very little to alter those personnel. For div3; Bobby Zamora and Paul Brooker signed permanently, also Richard Carpenter, Nathan Jones, Lee Steele (fwd), Steve Melton (mf), Matt Wicks (c-d), Michel Kuipers and Mark Cartwright (gk) initially. Senior pro Phil Stant and Mickey Thomas both later came down for the run-in. Youth team prospects Adam Virgo and Dean Hammond also got a squad no. Then next term for div2; Simon Morgan (c-d), Geoff Pitcher (mf), Dirk Lehmann (fwd) and Robbie Pethick (utility), then later Daniel Webb (fwd), Dave Lee and Junior Lewis (mf), Simon Royce and Chris Jones (gk) and also Phil Hadland and Wayne Gray (fwd). Kids from U19s Dan Harding and Dan Marney similarly received shirt numbers. Coach John Keeley was registered emg stand-by keeper.
Years 2-3 Squad 2000 - 2002
1 Kuipers (GK), 2 Watson, 3 Mayo, 4 Cullip, 5 Carr then Morgan, 6 Crosby later Lewis, 7 Freeman then Pitcher, 8 Rogers, 9 Hart, 10 Oatway, 11 Brooker, 12 Carpenter, 13/14 Steele, 14 Aspinall later Stant, 15 N Jones, 16 R Thomas then Lehmann later Gray, 17 Ramsay later Hadland, 18 Packham (GK), 19 Cartwright (GK) then Harding, 20 Melton, 21 Marney, 22 Virgo, 23 Wicks later Lee, 24 M Thomas then Wilkinson, 25 Zamora, 26 Pethick, 27 Hammond, 28 McPhee, 29 Keeley (gk coach), 30 Webb, 31 Royce (GK) later C Jones (GK).

Bobby Zamora (League Two & One, Championship)
Originally on-loan for a month from Bristol Rovers, Micky Adams brought Bobby Zamora to this club in February 2000. The lanky kid previously had a short spell at Bath and couldn't stop scoring. He notched on his debut in a Withdean draw, then got a hat-trick at Chester as Brighton turned a lacklustre season around. Dick Knight made a six figure offer for Rovers reserve in pre-season but this was rejected. Just before opening day of '00/01 campaign, Zamora joined BHA and negotiations included a hefty sell-on clause to clinch the deal. Bobby took no.25 and scored 14 goals by start of return fixtures in January 2001. He doubled that tally after his 20th birthday, before Brighton swept to div3 silverware in May. Our talisman said, 'we're all professionals - we get paid to do a job and we just go out there and do our job.' The following season '01/2 was similarly sensational. Zamora said, 'the way we're going I'd be silly to leave. We can step up another division quite easily.' Brighton had turned down a 1.2 million bid, much later allegedly upped to 2 mill from Cardiff and eventually got on with chasing consecutive promotions. Goals kept going into opponents nets and lots were coming from Bobby. He'd got to 15 in the league by New Year 2002, including a record breaking run of 10 in 10 games on the roll for all competitions. Peter Taylor replaced Adams and BZ said, 'it's a buzz for the team - you don't get to manage England without having ability and we're hoping he can carry on the good work.' At end of another fantastic season, Brighton won the div2 title and again Zamora got 28 league goals to boot. This included a fourth career hat-trick but most were singles that often tipped the balance in Albion's favour. Taylor said, 'he's not just a goal scorer, he's a hard-working forward that helps us keep the ball and helps us get it back.' Taylor had U21 coaching experience and Zamora had qualified to join those ranks. In '02/3 at higher level, Bobby was injured early in the season but came back to play a major part in the fight for div1 survival. He got 14 goals from 35 apps, not a bad ratio at all considering Albion's typical lower table negative goal difference. In July 2003 Bobby Zamora transferred to Spurs for 1.5 million. Things didn't work out there, although he continued in the Prem with W Ham. He then went to Fulham for '08/9. For us the boy done good. In Aug 2010 Bobby got an England app, coming on as sub at Wembley in a friendly. Not much later in the Prem he busted a leg and so revisited BHA for a L1 fixture at W'dean, hobbling on crutches.

Paul Brooker (League Two & One, Championship)
In the winter of 2000, Paul Brooker arrived at Brighton on a 3 month loan. He was a fast raiding winger and had been with Micky Adams previously at Fulham. Paul said, 'he seemed to have this great desire to succeed. He took over as manager when we were in the third division and straight away we got promoted.' Bobby Zamora (no.25) also joined Albion on loan just prior to no.6 Brooker. An incredible 7-1 win away at Chester when both scored, revived slipping Seagulls springtime status after languishing in 18th place. Paul continued, 'my debut was an unlucky loss at Northampton, then I played in the last 14 games of the season and we were unbeaten.' Adams spent 25k to secure him permanently for '00/01 and their fun really began after Zamora transferred for 100k prior to opening day. Given the no.11 shirt, Paul played 41 times that term including a run of 17 subs apps. He said, 'at Plymouth I scored early in the game but we didn't realise how significant it was until we found other teams around us hadn't won, so we were up. In the end we finished ahead of Chesterfield - it proved to us we were the better side and deserved the title.' A second full season for those medal winners like Michel Kuipers (no.1), Richard Carpenter (no.12), Nathan Jones (no.15), Lee Steele (no.14) and Steve Melton (no.20) was bolstered by additions Simon Morgan (no.5) from Fulham and Robbie Pethick (no.26) once of Portsmouth. But Micky Adams left for Leicester soon after the start and Peter Taylor came in for '01/2. Brooker said, 'he didn't have to tinker that much. We carried on exactly as before. He didn't bring any new players in until we signed Junior Lewis on loan near end of the season. I thought we'd do ok but didn't expect us to win the title again.' In '02/3 at div1 standard, Brooker made 37 apps at higher level and revelled in finding more space to operate. On completion of that season when Brighton were unfortunately relegated, he moved to Leicester where Micky Adams had taken them back to the Premiership. It didn't work out for Paul or Mr Adams either and both ended up back in lower leagues. Paul Brooker came on as sub against Brighton at Brentford in '06/7. Bobby Zamora was at West Ham by then, still trying to find the net. Brooker tried non-league but dropped out of playing serious footy.

Richard Carpenter (League Two & One, Championship)
Albion stalwart no.12 Richard Carpenter, came to Brighton from Cardiff as a Y2k Bosman free transfer. Adams had tried to sign him previously but Chippy stayed an extra year in Wales. At an earlier time when B'ton were on the Goldstone skids, Carpenter was winning div3 promotion at Gillingham. In years following, when Albion erstwhile played home games up at Priestfield ('97-'99), he was at Fulham with Adams and yet more success. After another promotion at Cardiff, our man from Kent coasts and shores sidestepped a possible move to now div1 Gillingham - in favour of Sussex by the sea. Peter Taylor had meanwhile pushed Gills onward and upward but would no doubt, have appreciated Chippy's work ethic there. After taking over from Adams as B'ton manager in '01/2, he found out what might have been. He said, 'if he'd had real pace he would have played at the very top level.' Blimey, steady-on Mr T. Anyway, Carpenter definitely made the grade in div1, or Championship call it what you will, to soar to seven years with Seagulls.
Carpenter scored twice against Gillingham in Champ's contests at Withdean. In September of '02/3 he let fly a long range special, when we were two down and in need of a makeover at the back. The ball cannoned of both post and keeper before entering the net at speed. On Boxing Day in '04/5 Chippy did it again from 25 yards as was his party piece, to open his account for another Championship campaign. In '05/6 he only scored one and in some respects, it was a handful of vital goals from mid-field that had previously helped Brighton forwards - in both senses! Carpenter said, 'I'd like to thank the fans for their support over the years. They have always been good to me.' He moved on in '06/7 and played for Conference South side Welling Utd. The club is not far off that A2 dual carriageway to London, from a route through Gillingham. Perhaps he just prefered an immediate return to reside nearer his roots in hills, fields and green spaces of Kent, than to shut up shop in Sussex. B'fans said good luck mate and thanks for everything. In 2010-11 he made some apps for Darren Freeman's Whitehawk.

Nathan Jones (League Two & One)
In 1999 Dick Knight wanted BHA to progress on and off the field and gave Micky Adams a futuristic 21st century brief. The brand new city of Brighton & Hove had approved land at Falmer for a community stadium and the club was hoping to submit a planning application asap. Adams added to his squad in Y2k with a number of quality signings necessary to raise the bar for a jump out of div3. In year one at Withdean, a left footed wingback Nathan Jones was sent-off playing for Southend. However Adams had seen enough to get him to sign for Brighton, along with likes of Zamora (no.25), Brooker (no.11), Carpenter (no.12) etc to replace those considered below par for a promotion challenge. Jones figured at no.15 and although a recognised left back, also played in midfield - completing 41 apps in '00/01 title winning campaign. He scored two in an early Withdean fixture with a BHA win 6-2 and the verbal Welshman said, 'the scoreline flattered Torquay.' His versatility as a sub allowed Adams 451 formation to be changed as per circumstances to keep a half decent run of results going. Having achieved a trophy and got to div2, Brighton attempted to repeat their charge up the leagues. Nathan said, 'if we all stick together, keep working hard and have a little bit of luck then we definitely do have a chance.' For most of '01/2 term, Jones was a first choice selection. Adams left in October 2001 and Peter Taylor took charge. It wasn't until the following February when Junior Lewis (no.6) was drafted-in to add extra driving force, that Jonesy and fellow midfielders Oatway (no.10) and Rogers (no.8) were often benched. A solid first eleven backed by options of bringing experienced men like Jones, stormed to a successive table topping season. In '02/3 Nathan Jones struggled to make an impact, merely getting 16 starts and 12 times as sub. With Steve Coppell attempting a miracle, he struck a fantastic shot at Forest for possibly goal of the season but otherwise didn't convert. Back in League1 Jonah was more in his element and racked up 36 league apps before Albion reached play-off stages. Nathan's self assessment prior to that Millennium Stadium special tie was, 'a Welsh wing wonder. It's great to be in my home town to play a final. A dream come true and wouldn't want to be here with any other group of lads in the world.' For a Championship campaign of '04/5 Jones found opportunities to figure in the sixteen limited. He made only 3 starts and 16 sub apps, so it came as no surprise to be released by Mark McGhee as Albion somehow survived on the last day. Nathan Jones popped up again as left back at League1 Yeovil Town, when Albion played 'em in '06/7, '07/8 and '08/9 also becoming Glovers asst mngr.

W'dean - FA Cup Back to Top
Go to the Withdean era tab and click previous encounters for clubs shown with F in the list.
In early Nov '10 for FAC round1 at W'dean, we drew 0-0 against non-league Woking. At Kingfield for the replay, it was 2-2 aet and Seagulls flew on - 3-0 via penalties. R2 versus FC United, again at Withdean, resulted in 1-1 stalemate. We won the replay 4-0. In Jan '11, R3 versus Portsmouth, at Withy again, Seagulls flew 3-1. At end of the month we went to Watford in R4 and won 1-0. Up next were Stoke away for R5. Ooops, lost 3-0. Previous year for FAC r4, BHA visited Aston Villa in Jan '10 and got beat 3-2. earlier in r3 at New Year, we squeezed past Torquay 0-1 at Plainmoor. For r2 in late Nov '09 B'ton entertained Rushton & Diamonds winning 3-2. In r1 of early Nov, Albion went to Wycombe and drew 4-4. Back at W'dean replay we won 2-0. In '08, B'ton first drew 3-3 wiv Hartlepool at our place. Then went up to theirs and got done 2-1 in the replay. In Jan '08 BHA surprisingly went out of the FA Cup in round3 to Mansfield 1-2 at Withdean. We'd beaten Cheltenham 2-1 in r1 after a replay (1-1) and Torquay 2-0 away in r2 - see '07/8 archived reports. Dean Wilkins faced another 'first' in Nov '06 and didn't want to be knocked out by it. Over four previous seasons Brighton only had to compete in the FA Cup round1 once, in '03/4 as a League1 side. Our record in this prestigious competition is not great during the Withdean era, considering we were three times playing in your actual Championship. Albion had not gone beyond round3 and as in the League Cup, also tripped up against lesser sides - apart obviously from stronger ones. On FAC1 Saturday in 2006, Northwich Victoria from Nationwide Conference made the journey to Withdean, which is slightly further than Aldershot, Woking or Crawley and certainly vastly different in terms of a pure football ground. It was by all accounts an entertaining spectacle - 8-0 see '06/7 reports. Also click Stafford Rangers 3-0 (r2) and West Ham 0-3 (r3) from archive lists.
In the previous season '05/6, Coventry came to our comprehensive sports complex and snatched victory 0-1, to be included in the draw for round4. We'd fallen to a fellow tier two side in r3 while only a 6700 audience looked on. Brighton had suffered from what Mark McGhee called the Withdean effect, where even near 8000 sized crowds were left well short in more ways than one. Together with an equivalent to league relegation form, we feebly went out to that one-nil reversal. Goals had been hard to come by and writing was scrawled on an inadequate suburban stadium wall, 'wot, no goal scorer?' The truth remained that there wasn't any money to buy one. Micky Adams went back to his brand-new shiny Ricoh Arena, planned a sky blue Premiership future and felt sorry for old mates. Lewes District Council meanwhile sought a Judicial Review in the High Court and a black cloud of depression hung above Brighton & Hove on that dreary January '06 day in our winter of discontent. Go to Withdean era tab and select Coventry from previous encounters menu.
What a difference a year makes. A day out in London, even post Xmas & New Year is still to be savoured and Brighton fans had gone to White Hart Lane in '05 by the odd five and a half thousand. Spurs supporters hot-footed to Tottenham and 36,000 turned up, which at 30 to 50 quid a seat is an awful lot of dosh. Championship Albion took on Prem giants following some half decent results for '04/5, keeping us safely above the drop zone. Almost in reaction to dismal home surroundings, Brighton love playing in big stadia and often produce a relative rise in standard. Spurs allowed Seagulls time and space to soar and so we saw a very useful performance, in a r3 cut and thrust cup atmosphere. With eight minutes left it showed one apiece on the board and a replay was definitely on. Then a piece of brilliance from one of several Internationals in white and navy blue, gave those metropolitan big boys a path to progress. BHA got beat 2-1 but felt far from down and out. There was hope for a positive gathering of momentum, to go push ahead and establish in FL's second tier. See also Tottenham from Withdean era page and other teams shown with F in index.
In '03/4 it involved a round1 trip to Lincoln 1-3 in a colourful fall during November, a week after Mr McGhee had taken the manager's job and seen his div2 (L1) charges scrape a draw at autumnal Peterborough. A debacle similar to those old Goldstone FA Cup shocks prevailed as Imps ran in three for one against. An unimpressive FAC record thus continued in front of an incredulous new boss. He said, 'I think it unacceptable for any team to lose to another from a lower division'. Brighton had alarmingly lost their way when Steve Coppell resigned in October and seasonal changes were afoot. McGhee stated on recovering from a suckers knockout blow, 'I will look thoroughly at younger players in the club. If there are any good enough however young, I'll not be afraid of playing them'. So rolling dice had been thrown which we wished would subsequently reveal all the right numbers.
The first time Brighton had reached div1 or the Championship in '02/3, we were drawn away in round3 at Norwich 1-3, three weeks after pinching three points there in the league. It had been a bonus Xmas present on Boxing Day '02, when Albion survived a second half battering to lead a charmed life in our area. An action replay almost followed in the cup tie with Seagulls flying into a lead just after half time, rather than before as in that league match. Suddenly the tape broke and chances ended up in our net, where as they'd done everything but in the original festive meeting. In fact a floodlight failure had postponed a yuletide schedule from Sat 4 Jan to a Tue eve k-o contest, ten days later. Steve Coppell's philosophy assumed a level of performance would determine where the team would relatively be towards end of a very tough season. He was trying to turn relegation certainties into survivors and although making it happen, couldn't be expected to regularly go beat top ten outfits - especially in cup competitions.
Brighton had been on promotion parade for a second successive season in '01/2, when Peter Taylor was our gaffer. At the halfway stage we were in third place in div2 (L1), having slipped off top slot through a number of recent draws. FA Cup round1 had seen Shrewsbury dispatched 1-0 at Withdean. Another home tie for round2 resulted in Rushden & Diamonds going out by 2-1 and both scraps were witnessed by 5500, which was around 1000 less than for a Nationwide sponsored fixture. Championship consolidators Preston came down from North End to Sussex by the sea for a round3 work out 0-2. They had undergone a resurgence, rising from div3 (L2) in '96 to win div2 (L1) in 2000. In 2001 PNE reached a play-off final and were a kick in the shirt, or rather spot from the Premiership. Those who braved chilly weather in suburban B'ton on a Tuesday night, watched a clash of a good team against class opponents. On the Saturday before, Brighton had incurred only a third season's defeat up at Wigan, which came after a two week break due to prolonged South Downs snowfields. In order to make the grade at higher level, we had to demonstrate competitiveness. Albion missed a penalty when already one-nil down and bowed out to a late second soft giveaway to Lilywhites. Seagulls had been grounded by a higher flying outfit and also taught a valuable lesson in differences between desire and rigid examination, aspiration and apparent level of reality.
See Scunthorpe 1-2 (r2) in Withdean era list and Aldershot 6-2 (r1) in Clubs index for 2000 results. Plus double H&A bonus Peterboro (1-1) 3-0 (r1) and Plymouth (0-0) 1-2 (r2) from W'dn era list for ties and replays in 1999.
Post championship seasons, there was a desperate need for Wilkins young squad to play in and thereby experience as many knock-out rounds as possible. Round2 always beckoned like a December beacon, lighting a road to glory or premeditated giant killing. A heart-breaking defeat at Southend in the '06 League Cup, revealed what fate can unexpectedly twist into any competition - as long as you're still left in the next draw. Eat your heart out Adams! It may be jumping the gun but we really, really would like to start each New Year included on the list for round3. Somewhere filled with 30,000 plus seats would be quite a nice place to visit again for 5000 Brighton fans - like Villa, West Ham, or Spurs.

W'dean - League Cup Back to Top
Go to Withdean era tab for all League Cup tie histories, shown with L against opponents.
Concerning the League Cup, BHA's run has been pedestrian to say the least. But hey, it's always an evening out - topical in late summer at Withdean. But in '10 we went to Northampton and lost 2-0. For '09 it was away at Swansea of all places to go west - they done us easy 0-3. In '08 Brighton first beat Barnet 4-0 in R1 at home. We next drew with Man City 2-2 aet for R2 at ours. And then won the shoot-out 5-3. Derby done us 1-4 in R3 at W'dean. For '07 BHA got ko'd in round1 at Cardiff 0-1 and in '06 initially got past Boston 1-0 at W'dean. Albion then went out in R2 at Southend 2-3 after leading by a single goal with minutes left to play. In '05 we saw an August night humiliation in R1 away to Shrewsbury 2-3, after being ahead with ten minutes left to count down. In '04 we bombed in R1 again, at home to Bristol Rovers 1-2, in a twist of fate. Although taking an early lead from a Butters nut, Albion conceded two inside half an hour to almost ludicrous defensive errors. A crowd of four thousand could then, for all the difference another hour made, have an early exit - just like our er, cup heroes.
In '03, prior to other LDV/FAC shenanigans, we reached round2. Brighton were drawn away first to Bristol Rovers, edging past them 1-0 at the Memorial Stadium. A spectacular over-head kick for the winner by McPhee, sent us into R2 - a memorable stat. Up at distant Middlesbrough and watched by ten thousand, Brighton went down 0-1 aet for a small taste of Premiership fare, Riverside style. The previous season '02 was also full of hope. BHA 'cruised' past Exeter 2-1 aet at Withdean R1, whilst in the midst of a league, long losing run. However, reality had set in when trounced by Ipswich at Portman Road for a September R2 elimination. Hammond, on only his second appearance, pinched an eighth minute lead. Virgo got to start a first game of that tumultuous div1 campaign. By half time Town were ahead and though the score remained unchanged Albion, local kid prospects and all knew yet more defeat at 1-3. A kind of reverse scenario applied to R1 of '01 at home, when in div2 we hammered then div1 Wimbledon (who?) 2-1, with two Zamora vital statistics. It fell apart when Prem outfit Southampton, came to our place and spanked us 0-3 - in those terrible hours of 9/11. On that day the world changed, a new order of events unfolded with each year and around this time, through football we remember.
In August 2000 B'ton met Millwall in the League Cup, over two legs home and away. Albion lost 1-2 at W'dean with 6000 present. Lions looked a good unit and smashed two in after mistakes in defence. Their quality of finishing was Championship standard and a real eye opener to BHA ambitions. Watson drove a free kick through an eleven man wall strung across their six yard box for a very bizarre score. B'ton worked at it but unfortunately couldn't level the tie. Team - Cartwright, Watson, Cullip, Crosby, Mayo, Freeman (Jones), Carpenter (Rogers), Oatway (Melton), Brooker, Hart, Zamora. For our equivalent league2 campaign of '00/1 B'ton were defeated in 3 of 4 initial fixtures, to end August in 21st, or the berth immediately above a bottom three. It was almost a spectre of those bad old years at Goldstone & Gillingham. Millwall were hoping to improve on play-off places from their last term 5th position finish.
Up at the Den, Albion showed they had got their act together at last. Over 750 die-hards pushed the SE16 London gate to er, 5200 - well, it was a work day in September. A first half wonder strike on the stroke of break-time put Lions one ahead. It was all Albion in the second 45 min, that they hoped to extend by another 30. Seagulls pulled one back from a Jones tap in, following up good work by Brooker 1-1. However, an equaliser wouldn't come but not for want of trying and lost 3-2 on aggregate. Team - Cartwright, Watson, Cullip, Wicks, Mayo, Rogers (Brooker), Carpenter, Oatway, Jones, Hart (Thomas), Zamora.
Seagulls flew through their league campaign on the back of that performance in docklands. A small step for the fledgling chicks but a giant swoop for the big bird eight months later. They eventually joined Millwall in a Championship equivalent in 2002. Millwall were also promoted in 2001, to division1 after a new manager came in and revamped their fortunes - yes, a certain Mark McGhee.
In 1999 it was div2 Gillingham, 0-2 home and same away. There is some fateful irony in that we'd been using their pitch previously, to play div3 home fixtures for those last two years. Incidentally, Peter Taylor got Gills promoted in 2000.

W'dean - FL Trophy Back to Top
Go to the Withdean era tab and click previous encounters for clubs shown; A, D or J in listing.
At a convenient time near to the end of the last 20th century decade, Brighton came to play at Withdean as a division3 side. Millwall seemed to be a perennial division2 outfit and so never the twain shall meet, except for knockout competitions. In December 1998 Millwall hammered Horton's 'heroes' team 5-1, at Priestfield in the Auto Windscreens Shield. A little later, our Goldstone glory ex-player went off home to Port Vale and Jeff Wood took over, plus got the sack shortly after. Then Micky Adams began to knock a reborn Albion eleven into shape for the new millennium. Millwall arrived at W'dean to play on a night in December 1999. That occasion was an AWS round1 tie and was one of five straight home games in an extended fortnight. No true Brighton fan could forget the last match of that horrendous sequence, when Rochdale (5) incredibly won 4-3. About 5000 turned up on one of the wettest evenings a south coast venue could provide for pre-Xmas outdoor entertainment. Brighton had also lost an FA Cup round2 replay 1-2 to Plymouth (3), on the last night of November. Initially 10 days earlier, they'd drawn 0-0 down at Home Park. There were 7400 in the west country and 5700 at W'dean for our return tie. Previously in div3 fixtures, Lincoln (1) had gotten a 2-2 draw witnessed by that same 5700 faithful on a Tuesday night, seven days beforehand. Following this, on Saturday 27 Nov watched by a near 6000 sell-out, Northampton (2) gave us a footballing lesson and left a new sports complex worthy 3-1 winners. The only victory in that crammed period was against Millwall (4) 1-0, in front of a mere 2400 paying punters. Those stay at home types missed a real AWS treat. Hart grabbed a last minute winner, his first goal for seven appearances as centre forward. Team - Walton, Watson, Crosby, Carr, Hobson, Campbell, Rogers, Oatway, Aspinall, Hart, Ramsay. Round2 was away at div2 Bournemouth, where 500 B'ton fans saw Seagulls k-o'd 1-0 in front of 4300 at Dean Court - or Fitness First Stadium turned 90 degrees. See '07/8 archive for next 5 home fixtures in a row!
The AWS competition had morphed into LDV vans trophy, where Albion met more div2 London opponents by name of Brentford in round2 of Jan 2001. We'd previously got past Cardiff 2-0 (r1) at home during December 2000. Withdean had been a quagmire on New Years Day, when Southend dropped in to do a div3 double over us. B'ton's loss on the opening afternoon of that season was seen by massed ranks of 3500 away fans. At this corresponding reverse fixture home debacle, 6500 popped along to see footy farce on a mud pile. The pitch was re-laid and so Brighton took their homeless LDV tie over the Kew Bridge to get it done and dusted. Bees beat Seagulls 4-2 on penalties after 2-2 aet, when 2400 got into late, then later Griffin Park. But hey, we've never had much luck at their 'compact' place up river or generally in west London. In autumn of 2001 B'ton got to r3 under Peter Taylor. See Withdean era histories for Swansea 2-1 (r1), Wycombe 2-1 aet (r2) and Cambridge 1-2 aet (r3).
Check the LVD round3 result versus QPR in Dec 2003 for confirmation of progress, when BHA were again in this comp after home wins v Forest Green 2-0 (r1) and Boston 3-1 (r2). Brighton took 1600 to Loftus Road with 7500 there in total. Albion gave a good account of themselves but were knocked out 2-1. By some sort of footy coincidence McGhee had been appointed BHA manager a little over a month prior as div2 Brighton had just slipped up 1-0 at Bournemouth, then crashed 4-0 to Brentford on another futile night in the metropolis. We returned to Shepherds Bush for a div2 (L1) match in Jan 2004 with 1500 supporters in a 17800 crowd. Albion battered Rangers in a second half blitz, though couldn't get a goal to alter a losing 2-1 scoreline. Talk about history repeating itself in the Withdean era - see either A, D or J shown in club index under tab on Fatman Slims features page.
A couple of recent defeats in Nov '06, seen in the context of AWS & LDV k-o ties as above, probably didn't indicate a cause for concern in Bermondsey's JPT QF evening dust-up 1-1. Brighton and Millwall had seen enough of one another over the last couple of seasons to have penalties of huge portfolios. Historically we gave it a good go 3-2 on pens and that helped league form as a spin-off. Refer to '06/7 history and reports archives - also for Boston 2-0 (r1) and MK Dons 4-1 (r2). At least it's not too far into Sussex on the express train home, that's a bit of a knockout too. It all finally ended in tears at Bristol City 0-2 (s-f).
See Swansea 0-1 (s-f), Cheltenham 4-1 (q-f) and Barnet 2-1 (r2) reports for '07/8 JPT ties. In Aug '08 Albion didn't get a bye for round1 and went up to Northampton winning 1-0, which at least was different. Then there was a r2 tie at W'dean v Orient, drawing 2-2 and thus a pen contest. Albion won 5-4. We got Swindon at home next and done 'em 2-0 in the southern section quarter-final. It was up to Shrewsbury next for the semi. A 0-0 but got thru to final via shoot-out 5-4. Against Luton it was over H&A legs. At ours in Jan '09 we drew 0-0 - oh dear! Up at Ken Rd in Feb '09 it was 1-1. But B'ton went out on pens 4-3 - oh no! For '9/10 Albion got a bye in r1 and went to Orient for r2. We got done 0-1 to a v late goal - oh well! Then LO doubled the dose 0-2 at ours in r1 '10/11 - oh gawd!!!

Dick Knight Back to Top
The honourable Sir Richard Knight of Withdean, is now a legend and Life President but before May 2009 he was a very hard-working top banana. And apparently a bit of a visionary too...
What fictionally might have been as CHAIRMAN.
Not quite exactly ten years after Doncaster came to Brighton and played in that frantic very last game at the Goldstone Ground, they returned to what was then a springtime city. The venue for April 2007 was Withdean, which hosted a pretty ordinary mid-table run-in fixture in League 1. There was little to play for except pride in performance and thoughts that things can get better one day. Before too long many Brighton fans would be renewing season tickets for next season and also wondering where the last decade went. A win against Donny in the penultimate match of '96/7 had set up a final day relegation clash at Hereford and you know the rest. The following season Albion were again in deep trouble, playing home games miles away at Gillingham. It was only a truly dreadful run of results by relegated Doncaster that saved our record of seriously avoiding Conference football for two years running. For any number of previous seasons Brighton had been a div2 club with aspirations, if not expectations of higher achievement. That particular image was wrecked in the nineties and misplaced in the noughties. So did Rovers really do us a big favour way back then as they slipped out of the league? They have since played fixtures in 2007 at their brand spanking new Keepmoat Stadium and had nearly 8000 there when Bristol city visited during the run-in. Read into that mundane statement what you'd like to.
* * *
In a twist of warp speed fate, Albion supporters read back pages of daily newspapers one hot day and recoiled in a horrific sweat. The summer of 1997 had turned into a nuclear winter wasteland, like remnants of ravaged, excavated Goldstone soil. BHA had surprisingly been voted out of the Football League at an emergency meeting for, 'failing to ensure the club would return to its populated catchment area.' Mr Knight and his consortium had all but officially taken over the Board, so proved powerless at an eleventh hour to stop rot at the top. Albion had been caught between the Devils and deep blue and white sea. Or put another way, appeared washed up by workings of satanic maladministration. Hereford were happily reinstated to div3. Brighton thus started the '97/8 season ground-sharing with Worthing until Withdean could quickly be updated to take three thousand people watching semi-pro outfits. Now nice Mr Knight already had a vision of a brighter future and motivated his team to work at providing plans for a new home. In a parallel universe, manager Steve Gritt had released many of the squad and elected to build a team fit to challenge for FL status once more. Due to vagaries of time and space, let alone income from bums on seats, a harsh reality took hold. Albion's struggles continued on and off the field and we were merely mid-table mediocrity by next May. Conversely we had 'carefully' consolidated in the Conference. The next campaign saw Brighton joined by Doncaster in lower league fare. In an epic meeting at Withdean, a 1-1 draw held old adversaries together in a north-south divide, to avoid a still lesser tier of north-south regional football. Donny lead from a first minute penalty and had resisted Albion pressure for a further 89 minutes. Then former Essex Senior League player Hart, forged forward as two minutes of stoppage time drew to a close. He was clattered by a big, red hoop-shirted dirty northern bar-steward but somehow chipped the ball over this fall-guys body. From angle of lines marking extremity of the area, OGH unleashed a left foot drive that beat Rovers goalie by sheer quality of pace, power and placement. Less than two thousand people pondered if this could possibly be the start of something big for the new millennium.
In 2002 Doncaster were the first club to visit Brighton's new ground at Falmer, the 'Forever Fans United Stadium.' One hundred years of Albion history had not terminated in a retail park in Hove but was rejuvenated on a Southdowns chalk slope with apparently full sustainability. B&H City Council had voted by 11 to 1 to approve building a 12000 capacity, very low profile modern arena outside boundaries of the new National Park but providing a stepping stone to access an area of outstanding natural beauty. Doncaster came, saw and conquered on that day but realised this magnificent structure was something they could build in facsimile in south Yorkshire - if they could just get back into div3. The Gods of Football duly deemed it to be so. Meanwhile Brighton had developed a competitive side through a prolific youth policy and use of Withdean as a reserve and U18 venue. Over a period they had specially established two successful teams in both the Combination and Youth Alliance leagues.
On the final day of this inaugural season Brighton hosted Hereford for FL honours. Leading goalscorer Zamora smashed a left foot volley from outside the area to seemingly break deadlock after an hour. The ball hit a post just as in May '97 and rebounded into play. Super sub Brooker raced-in and hammered the loose ball into an inviting net. Deja vu or what? Promotion was assured, while Hereford...
In a sort of flash forward, Mr Knight latterly had steered the club to climb several divisions of the pyramid and wasn't stopping for anything. Planning permission was sought to increase capacity of Falmer's FFU venue, to make it attractive to visiting Championship outfits and their travelling support. Doncaster had built their Keepmoat Stadium in the interim and last century Belle Vue was just another housing development opposite the racecourse. The government of an ever changing world decided there was no opposition case to answer at Falmer, where local politics had bled community services dry within borders of our landlocked County Town. They continued to tilt at escarpment windmills and refused to comply with terms and conditions of surrounding NP status. Their future seemed bleak as increasing visitor numbers swelled many a small town in Sussex. Construction work, including the Wembley style arch began for 2010 completion. It was all part of an old fan's dream but these can and do happen in reality if you maintain belief long enough. Truth is sometimes much stranger than footy-fan pulp fiction. Ask Dick Knight if you doubt it! You couldn't make it up. He didn't and look what really happened.
Withdean Era -
3 league titles; League2 - '00/01, League1 -'01/02 & '10/11. Promotion via L1 play-offs in '03/4. Four promotions in 12 years at Withdean. What a story.
Footnote: Dick Knight stepped down as supremo of Albion in the Community during the close season of 2013. He was also granted a Master of Arts by Brighton Uni for services to community projects.

Martin Perry Back to Top
Our Community Stadium CEO had quite a job on at Falmer.
Martin Perry, as Chief Executive of BHA, had responsibility for delivering Falmer. He once worked on McAlpine's special projects. He could not have anticipated how long a job babysitting a community stadium would be.
During the nineties quite a number of football grounds were well past their sell-by date. A new generation of stadiums was coming on stream and it seemed like a good idea at the time to try and get one. Towns and cities that many years previously had attracted large crowds, fell into this prime footy wish-list category. Brighton and Huddersfield were two such likely candidates - both urgently in need of an overdue makeover. When McAlpines were building a super, shiny stadium below heights of Kilner Bank, Huddersfield were just so desperate to play there. In conjunction with the Rugby Club, local council and Football Trust, they had made a plan almost come to fruition. In the '94/5 season Town upped sticks and moved in anyway, with three sides completed. At the end of that season Huddersfield were promoted via the play-offs to what is now called the Championship. That would have been thought very unlikely, had they been forced to stay at decrepit Leeds Road - which was then sold.
Brighton had been in similar difficulties by comparison, as the final twentieth century decade dawned. Albion had fallen on hard times and more so, from not establishing as an equivalent top ten Championship club. On relegation from the second tier in 1992, BHA 'remained' in div2 because they were renumbered on formation of the Premiership. The Goldstone Ground 'safety' capacity had been significantly reduced and search for a new stadium site was always 'ongoing'. The club appeared trapped, not only by unhelpful local authorities and sanctity of Green Belt but through self-inflicted abysmal financial management. Hove Council later also turned down a scheme for warehouses on the Goldstone site, that might initially have alleviated crippling debts and huge tax burden. By 1995 power had shifted into asset strippers clutches, who sold the Goldstone without securing an alternative home in Brighton & Hove. A new stadium remained all but a dream and sinking status of this football club was further eroded to become immersed in a total nightmare. After '95, Albion would not meet Huddersfield until 2001, when again we could only stand, stare and marvel at what might have been - little knowing what was actually still to come.
Falmer Saga.
On 28 October 2005, Brightonfans.com were one of the first to announce 'Yes' - a verdict then just released by the ODPM, that upheld Falmer as the number one site for a community stadium. The case for Falmer hung in the balance after a first Public Inquiry. An apathetic anti lobby, presented as a pro-environment and conservation of ecology alliance, held sway with initial intractable Inspectors. In the second instant, they had to prove conclusively a viable alternative was forthcoming. Whereas in other localities a stadium would routinely be built at city limits, part of Brighton's problem was availability of land encompassed at the foot of surrounding South Downs. Further, an error in that paperwork granting planning permission left a loophole opponents could effectively exploit by seeking a Judicial Review.
In Sept '06 Brighton & Hove Albion may have lost three consecutive League 1 fixtures in a week but by October critically won a point of conjecture in an ongoing out-of-court battle of Falmer with Lewes District Council. A year after Prescott's verdict this undemocratic body guessed they could prolong legal processes as much as possible but were out manoeuvred by the FC, who instigated a preliminary hearing to circumvent formal High Court action. LDC realised the whistle was about to blow at the 90th minute for extra time and substituted their future protracted tactics, reverting to plan A. The government solicitor had previously offered matters be referred to Communities Minister Ruth Kelly, for inspection and consultation. This would include due consideration of all such questions LDC raised by way of challenge. Therefore a conclusive situation BHA and B&H city council actively encouraged, was available again as a method of categorically reaching an incontrovertible decision.
Border War.
The gist of Lewes DC's current argument concerned the associated AONB. In a strange twist of fate, BHAFC applied first to B&HCC for planning permission within Unitary boundaries at Village Way. Clearly of necessity, adjacent land for an immediate transport 'drop-off' area was required, alongside the Droveway but fell into LDC's non-rural patch - although viewed seemingly an act of heinous bureaucratic provocation. This parcel has subsequently been grabbed by all those organisations the sub-county authority purport to represent like CPRE, to be passed around as 'prime downland' on a sensitive chalk slope. So a perceived audacious application to tarmac right up to a natural roadside boundary, was actually equally valid because proposed National Park limits were not originally established but open to public consultations. However, common sense did not prevail and a myriad of minor groups like the Society of Sussex Downsmen, fought to register remote ploughed up 'set-aside' as an integral field of regional recreational importance. Let's face it, there would be a bloody good carpark ready for expected out of county tourists, wishing to partake of a new NP promoted 'perfect' landscape. And remember, there would anyhow be an all year right of access to popular heritage in 'unspoilt countryside', as the ever trampled South Downs Way becomes some sort of back packers or mass ramblers' super highway to Brighton - not just a little busy beauty spot on alternate autumn/winter Saturday afternoons. Slight infiltration of the AONB didn't usurp the hold LDC attempted to justify but they couldn't stay elected ad-infinitum and eventually failed. Power exerted by those National Park civil administrators would make rescinding outdated byelaws the only true vocation of small town 'representatives'.
Top Man.
Martin Perry managed to retain his sanity throughout those above events and one day, which coincided with the anniversary of Withdean opening, received some really good news. His original experience of the Galpharm project helped with realising a vision for iconic Falmer. It was said he was the best signing Dick Knight ever made and not many in Sussex would argue. When Dick became chairman of BHA, he persuaded Martin to join the club full time and take responsibility for returning exiled Albion to Brighton. MP first had to sort out a homecoming to 'temporary' Withdean, then lead the team to plan for and build Falmer. Perry continued his lifes work at the Amex, with unveiling planning applications for increased stadium capacity and off-site car parking, plus development of training grounds in Lancing. Good job he was a true fan and not just a major construction professional.
Go to the Archive for Falmer tabs, to check out what happened during those years 1999 - 2011.
In mid March 2012, Perry stepped down as CEO to BHAFC but retained executive status as Managing Director. However he stayed as top banana of the Community Stadium Company until 2014 - in order to see completion of expansion to the Amex and provision of new training facilities for Brighton's Academy at Lancing.

Gory Years Managers '93-'99 Back to Top
PRE WITHDEAN ERA 1993 - 1999
Albion dropped from div2 to div3 at end of '95/6 when it was known all season that the Goldstone had been sold. So began the appointment of a series of managers leading up to the Withdean era.

year D Pt Fr Ag -GD Po ^ Manager -- Chairman - Home
93/4 2 59 60 67 -07 14 -- Brady - - - - - Stanley - Goldstone Gnd
94/5 2 59 54 53 +1 16 - - Brady - - - - Stanley - Goldstone Gnd
95/6 2 40 46 69 -23 23 R Brady/Case - Archer - Goldstone Gnd
96/7 3 49 53 70 -17 23 -- Case/Gritt -- Archer -- Goldstone Gnd
97/8 3 35 38 66 -28 23 -- Gritt/Horton - Knight -- Gillingham
98/9 3 55 49 66 -17 17 -- Horton/Wood/Adams Knight Gillingham

Liam BRADY ('93-'95) had a couple of seasons in div2 but could only finish in lower mid table. He resigned when his position became untenable. Jimmy CASE ('95-'96) lasted a year but couldn't stop a downward spiral. Steve GRITT ('96-'98) prevented the club going into oblivion but was Knight's first sacking. Brian HORTON ('98-'99) resigned before completing a year in the job, going off to Port Vale. Micky ADAMS came in soon after Jeff Wood ('99) appeared to be taking Albion too close to the drop again. So Knight fired him too.

The up and down nature of the incredible Withdean era does not exactly make it easy to compare consecutive like with like. Probably the best we can do is to grade each season appropriately as if they were for example, either big or small juicy morsels. In their own way all of these were a peach of a season, following trauma of loss of the Goldstone Ground and exile to Gillingham. Perhaps our background information should show respective range of sizing to appreciate over this last decade, fruits grown since a homecoming harvest.

year D Pt Fr Ag +GD Po ^ Manager - Chairman - Home
99/0 3 67 64 46 +18 11th - Adams -- -- Knight -- Withdean
00/1 3 92 73 36 +37 1st P Adams -- -- Knight -- Withdean
01/2 2 90 66 42 +24 1st P Adams/Taylor Knight Withdean
03/4 2 77 64 43 +21 4th P Coppell/McGhee Knight Withdean
06/7 2 53 49 58 -09 18th - McGhee/Wilkins Knight Withdean
07/8 2 69 58 50 +08 7th -- Wilkins -- -- Knight - Withdean
08/9 2 52 55 70 -15 16th - Adams/Slade Knight - Withdean
9/10 2 59 56 60 -04 13th - Slade/Poyet - Bloom - Withdean
10/11 2 95 85 40 +45 1st P Poyet -- -- Bloom - Withdean

The above represent seasons in the Withdean era when differences to mid to late nineties years are apparent. Micky ADAMS ('99-'01) created a new div3 side to kick-start the revival process at our converted north Brighton leafy suburb. Peter TAYLOR ('01-'02) took over and a div2 promotion challenge continued somewhat seamlessly. Mark McGHEE ('03-'06) was at the helm to steer BHA back to div1 via Millennium Stadium p-o final. Dean WILKINS ('06-'08) took charge with Albion back in League1 (div2) after McGhee was quickly relieved of duties. Brighton failed to reach p-os the following term and yet another manager perished. ADAMS ('08-'09) took the hot seat again for a very short second revolution. He'd failed by Feb and Russell SLADE ('09) came in with BHA in the drop zone. He got us out of it and became a hero. But he lost his job after only 8 months in charge. Gus POYET arrived with S American fanfare ('09-11) and did some sort of samba job to boot. Gus safely steered the club away from danger and next, in his first full year as a manager, gained a third title for BHA in twelve years at Withdean. That was amazing!

Well over a decade since those 20th century dark days and talk about ups and downs. For all its restrictions, Withdean hosted a period when the club was able to mount a push for Championship football. It had been a bit like, two steps forward and one back but was infinitely acceptable to those gory years at the Goldstone and then Gillingham. Withdean thus served a purpose and imagine what might yet be achieved, with fundamentals of a proper home and realistic finances in place. Apparently Tony Bloom is the man to deliver such miracles. He's got all it takes, money, ambition, calculated risk taking and above all, plenty of luck!

2 Goldstone Ground Managers Back to Top
Barry Lloyd
Early in '07/8 season the Albion gave a job to southern old-boy and ex-manager Barry Lloyd to go forth and find some new and exciting talent. He did this for three years as Chief Scout. Lloyd was BHA reserve and youth team coach in 1986 before stepping into the bosses job after nine months. His previous managerial career included a spell at Yeovil Town, when they successfully gained a place in the new national Alliance Premier League of 1979. Lloyd got Worthing up to speed in the Isthmian League then made a fateful jump into Football League. Following initial relegation to old div3, Lloyd rebuilt a Brighton side and got Martin Hinshelwood installed as chief coach. This useful partnership saw BHA once more get to within touching distance of original div1 by 1991. Barry Lloyd then became Managing Director, while Hinshelwood more or less ran the playing side. A sometimes volatile relationship with fans deteriorated over the next two seasons as Brighton fell to third tier football, while the Premiership took off. Albion were a selling club and basically Lloyd didn't have spare money to spend because high squad wages and growing debts took a toll from limited budgets. Increasingly this football club was in a desperate financial situation and fans perceived Lloyd as integral to an emerging debacle. A valuable asset in size and position of our Goldstone Ground, unfortunately was set against a background of claims by creditors and outstanding tax bills. By end of the 1992-3 season only sale of Brighton's goalkeeper averted a winding-up order. HM Inland Revenue offices were at Durrington and Lloyd personally delivered the face-saving cheque. In December 1993 he parted company with BHA and fans rejoiced. However he had done some good transfer business over several years and helped keep our club viable. There were also new stadium proposals, which perhaps received concerted and justified opposition but would not have left us homeless. A certain irony exists whereby those who relieved Lloyd of executive decisions quickly took BHA even further down a short Goldstone Lane to disaster. Hinshelwood and Lloyd kicked off a programme of developing youth players and that was something which continues to date.
BHA consistently turned out half decent youth teams since Withdean became our local pitch. A number of these kids came through to figure regularly in first elevens and they obviously have been coached to high technical specification. However we actually want to be a version of Championship hammers and not a mere League 1 anvil - hence another revised scouting regime. They say footballers brains are in their boots, well perhaps some of our baby-faced pro's and scholars should enrol for a psychology course at Sussex University. They'll be beating heads against a nearby red brick wall otherwise, as imported 'clever' players forever fill team-sheets on that aforementioned road to Falmer and beyond. Was it important young men of our county got heads into gear, apart from randomly racing around and using quick feet? Maybe ask Peter Taylor, he'd often deliberately thought U21 training things through.
BHA must be considered a true future Championship contender, although waiting time may depend on overall squad strength. There are plenty of smaller clubs that do gain entry to tier two but those similar 'Yeovils' of this country find it so much harder to stay put. Time would tell if class of '06/7 young pro's like Lynch, Cox, Robinson, Rents, Elphick, Fraser, Gatting, Sullivan, Fogden and Chamberlain could make a quantum leap themselves to FL divisions. Individually one of these should be around when we play Wolves, Ipswich or Burnley again. However it was highly unlikely they might ever represent one side collectively at any level, even if it was very close to home.

Brian Clough
Brighton fans will recall a Sept 2004 visit to the City Ground alongside the River Trent, where there were flowers. Brian Clough had died a week previously and opposite Forest's club shop was a cellophane covered sea of blooms, all sorts of football mementoes, other trivia and also shirts. One of these was of blue and white stripes, as a touching tribute to his inspiring though brief excursion to the south coast, over thirty years before. The Chairman responsible for bringing such a big name to boost lowly Albion was Mike Bamber. Sadly, he too passed on but is remembered as prime mover and instigator of BHA's glory days. Clough deserted to Leeds after nine months of only popping over from the midlands, to stay in hotels and Brighton sued. In an out-of-court settlement, a year after raising Sussex hopes to fever pitch, the Messiah admitted letting down, 'the best Chairman I ever worked for'. Bamber had given Him total freedom, carte blanche but perhaps not enough money to eventually turn Albion into a full member of the elite. There was Boardroom talk over drinks, of a new ground but the Borough Council could hardly be described as being onside or remotely supportive. Inevitably it became a dream that slipped away but not finally put to rest. Of course, there will always be football's ups and downs over time. Bamber subsequently presided over our club in division 1 and a FA Cup final. Clough simultaneously took Nottingham Forest to a peak of European success. They were then reduced to League 1 status like little old us. Hey, it's still better than those gory days, ain't it? Although for decade after long twentieth century decade, an overriding assumption prevailed - Brighton definitely had potential.
Dick Knight has kept faith with Mark McGhee after seeing modern managers of Prem calibre like Micky Adams, Peter Taylor and Steve Coppell come and go. This FC had big ambitions, probably higher than those of on-the-make seventies and Falmer is very much top of a current agenda. Yes, potential was alive and well and living temporarily at Tongdean Lane, BN1 5JD, surrounded by beautiful parks, sumptuous residences and suburban affluence. Money abounds but seemingly for BHA, paid out as rent for a cramped, converted athletics arena and utility sports complex. The answer to our twenty first century conundrum is all to do with wrong location, relocation and right location. On 24 July 1999, Nott'm Forest were first visiting team to grace the pitch at leafy Withdean. However you wanted to view it, they were a big club and it had been a very long time since we'd entertained such a salubrious outfit. A tad downhill for the Reds since them on-the-up nineties, with relegation a huge shock. Nevertheless, possessing a fan base easily equal to most Championship upper class, they did get right back in there sooner, rather than later. Albion would kill to get half their average gate, although most of our long-suffering devotees are much more accepting of lower league fare than Forest faithful, who without mercy have 'murdered' a number of stop-gap managerial victims. If somehow finding out the mortal truth, Clough would maybe have a turn or two in his grave.

1 Goldstone Ground Player Back to Top
Alan Curbishley
Former Albion midfielder Alan Curbishley was once manager at West Ham, having replaced Alan Pardew when those blowing bubbles burst down at Boleyn Ground and Green Street was covered at length in tabloid brown stuff. Hammers had previously failed to somehow close out the FA Cup final of May '06, when a right old east-end knees up in Cardiff turned into a sickening second Wembley nightmare scene. It had been going from bad to worse since, whilst a new sugar daddy entered the Boardroom promising a sweet smell of success. Alf Garnet would have turned in his municipal grave, as even a hardened cynic might just believe, oi yeah, actually, money can buy everyfing.
Brighton played Charlton on 8 May 2001 in our own friendly cup final to celebrate winning the 3rd division title in our 100th year. It was also a testimonial for Malcolm Stuart and Jock Riddell, for years of 'over and above' service to Albion. Alan Curbishley had worked wonders at Charlton in their return to the Premiership that season and got them into the top ten. He had been at the helm since 1990, initially with Steve Gritt for a partnership that lasted five years. As an Albion player, Curbishley made 132 appearances before joining Charlton as coach. He had started at West Ham, coming through ranks of their Academy, so knew a bit about the place.
As a kid, Curbishley (whose name is Llewellyn) was spotted for potential and made an impact for both England schoolboys and youth teams. He was in the side for West Ham at the 1975 Youth Cup final. As a creative midfielder, he played nearly 100 times at Hammers and also got into England's U21 squad. In 1979 he went to Birmingham and enjoyed a successful spell back in division 1. A busted knee and moves to Villa and Charlton saw a slight blip but he helped Athletic up to top flite football. Barry Lloyd brought Curbishley to the Goldstone in 1987 and a go at Third Division tactics. However, he proved to be inspirational as a playmaker and Albion regained div2 status after that one season, with 84 points for 2nd place. As a manager, Curbishley twice took Charlton into the Premiership. After establishing Addicks there since 2001, he took leave of absence last term and sat back for an inevitable phone call from that fickle finger of fate. We assume having witnessed a lengthy stadium merry go round at the Valley, which included a short ground share with West Ham, Curbishley understandably passed on the unfulfilled Falmer farce, when instincts told him an old colleague was young enough to walk in his footsteps. Perhaps a lack of money shouldn't really be expected to buy everything.
In case you didn't remember, West Ham were once thrashed 6-0 at Reading. Big-time Charlies, Prem prima donnas and fragile super-egos were some of the more polite comments aimed in the direction of Hammers line-up. They'd allegedly put more effort into a wee small hours binge at Faces nightclub than that faceless performance over ninety minutes. Curbishley said, 'I'm very disappointed'. He had gone from hero to zero but was carrying a can for the big Bentley brothers who started believing their, WHU are you, 'oh wow, mega gees a week' hype. Big money and bling, arrogance and bad attitude had sent them on a downward spiral that even an eighty five million investment mighta failed to prevent crashing and burning like Icelandic lava in full flow. Meanwhile Curbishley had sixteen games to sort it. He did, so goes up there with Steve Coppell as a bloke Brighton fans admire, whatever happened while we were fleetingly in his still shell-shocked company. Btw, we'd also like given a little money just to buy something as well.
Alan Curbishley resigned from West Ham in September 2008. He said, 'the club made significant player decisions without involving me. I had no option but to leave.' He subsequently won compensation thru the courts and was available for the Albion job in 2009 but money isn't everything is it?

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ARSENAL Back to Top
GUNNERS PREM Lge record from 11/12 to 18/19; 3, 4, 4, 3, 2, 5, 6, 5. * * * Runner-up - 1 time '16, Top Four - 4 times, Ave = 4th (8yrs)
STATUS; one of the elite top 6 clubs, Arsenal have finished in the top 4 year on year this century. But in 2017 they didn't qualify for the Champions League as usual but for the lesser Europa League competition.
MANAGER; Unai Emery (2018-19), previously Arsene Wenger (1996-2018)
18/19 - P38 W21 D7 L10 F73 A51 GD+22 Pt70 Po5. Wins = 55.2%, Draws = 18.4%, Loss = 26.3% - Unai Emery.
17/18 - P38 W19 D6 L13 F74 A51 GD+23 Pt63 Po6. Wins = 50%, Draws = 15.7%, Loss = 34.2% - Arsene Wenger, retired at end of season.
16/17 - P38 W23 D6 L9 F77 A44 GD+33 Pt75 Po5. Wins = 60.5%, Draws = 15.7%, Loss = 23.6% - Arsene Wenger.
Arsene Wenger was the longest serving boss by miles across all divisions. However he wasn't universally popular with Gunners fans in terms of making the club no.1.
AW GUNNERS RECORD; to Aug 2017 - P1175 W676 D269 L230 Wins = 57.5%
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE; 11/12 - last 16, 12/13 - last 16, 13/14 - last 16, 14/15 - last 16, 15/16 - last 16, 16/17 - last 16.
EUROPA LEAGUE; 17/18 - QF (top of group), 18/19 - finalists.

FALMER years - 17/18, 18/19 @ Prem. FA Cup - go to History & Travel, previous encounters.
18/19 - under Chris Hughton, at home in Dec we drew 1-1. Away in May we drew 1-1. BHA = 17th 36pt, A = 5th 70pt
17/18 - away in Oct we lost 2-0. At home in Mar we won 2-1. BHA 15th 40pt, Arsenal 6th 63pt ~ Europa Lg.
PREM; P4 . W1 D1 L0 . F3 A2 . W0 D1 L1 . F1 A3 . Pt4 GD-1

Withdean era - no meetings.
ARSENAL PREM Lge record from '99/00 to 18/19; 2, 2, 1, 2, 1, 2, 4, 4, 3, 4, 3, 4, 3, 4, 4, 3, 2, 5, 6, 5.
Best = 1st - 2 titles (01/2 & 03/4), Worst = 6th (17/18), Ave = 3rd (20yrs)
Title Favs; 04/05 - 2nd. Runners-up - 5 times (99/00, 00/1, 02/3, 04/5 & 15/16), Top four - 10 times from 20yrs, Top six - 3 times.
PAST Managers; Arsene Wenger (1996-2018)
PL HONOURS; since 1992 and start of the Premier League, Arsenal (an inaugural member) had won the title three times in the 25 years to 2018.
C20 Prem champs - 97/98. Runners-up - 98/99.
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE; finalists '06. EUROPA LEAGUE; final 19, finalists '00.
FA CUP; winners '93, '98, '02, '03, '05, '14, '15, '17, finalists '01, s-f '99, '04, '09. LEAGUE CUP; winners '93, finalists '07, '11, '18.

FALMER info - prior to promotion into the Prem, Albion twice previously drew Gunners for FA Cup ties played at the Amex.

PREM record from 11/12 to 18/19; 16, 15, 15, 17, 20, (13, 4, 5 @ Champ's). * * * * Stayed up - 4 times from 5 years in bottom six, relegated - '16. Ave = 17th.
STATUS; after spending the opening decade as a PL top ten club, Villa began to decline and were relegated from the Prem in '15/16. They bounced back for 19/20.
MANAGER; Dean Smith (2018), previously Steve Bruce (2016-18)

FALMER years - '16/17 @ Championship
16/17 - under Chris Hughton; at home in Nov we drew 1-1. Away in May we drew 1-1. BHA promoted 2nd 93pt, Villa 13th 62pt
C21 Champ's record; P2 . W0 D1 L0 . F1 A1 . W0 D1 L0 . F1 A1 . Pt2 GD0

Withdean era - no league fixtures. FA Cup - see previous encounters.
PREM Lge record from '99/00 to 18/19; 6, 8, 8, 16, 6, 10, 16, 11, 6, 6, 6, 9, 16, 15, 15, 17, 20, (13, 4, 5 @ Champ's).
Prem: best = 6th 5 times, worst = 20th. Top six - 5 times (in 17yrs), top ten - 4 times. Stayed up - 6 times in bottom six, relegated - '16. Ave = 11th.
Champ's: promo - '19, p-os - '18
ASTON VILLA were one of the 22 inaugural members of the Premier League in 1992. Only 6 of those original clubs played in the elite for all 25 years since, up to 2017.
PAST Managers; John Gregory (1998-2002), Graham Taylor (2002-3), David O'Leary (2003-6), Martin O'Neill (2006-10), Alex McLeish (2010-12), Paul Lambert (2012-15), Tim Sherwood (2015), Remi Garde (2015-16), Eric Black (2016), Roberto di Matteo (2016), Steve Clarke (2016), Steve Bruce (2016-18)
FA Cup; finalists - 99/00, 14/15

Footnote - Villa reached Champ's play-offs in 17/18 & 18/19 - winning promo in the final.

CHERRIES PREM record from 11/12 to 18/19; (11, 2 @ L1), (10, 1 @ Champ's), 16, 9, 12, 14. * * * Top ten - '17, Ave = 13th (4yrs)
STATUS; Cherries rose from League Two in 2010 to go on up thru a further two divisions then break into and survive in the Premier League.
Second-Season Syndrome: 15/16 - 16th then 16/17 - 9th.
MANAGER; Eddie Howe (2012-19)
18/19 - P38 W13 D6 L19 F56 A70 GD-14 Pt45 Po14. Wins = 34.2%, Draws = 15.7%, Loss = 50%
17/18 - P38 W11 D11 L16 F45 A61 GD-16 Pt44 Po12. Wins = 28.9%, Draws = 28.9%, Loss = 42.1%
16/17 - P38 W12 D10 L16 F55 A67 GD-12 Pt46 Po9. Wins = 31.5%, Draws = 26.3%, Loss = 42.1%
Eddie Howe is in his second spell at Cherries since 2008 and is the man responsible for their remarkable success.
EH CHERRIES RECORD; to Aug 2018 - P271 W117 D63 L91 Wins = 43.1%

FALMER years; 13/14, 14/15 @ Championship, 17/18, 18/19 @ Prem. FA Cup & EFL Cup - see History & Travel, previous encounters.
18/19 - under Chris Hughton, away in Dec we lost 2-0. At home in April we lost 0-5. BHA = 17th 36pt, B'mth = 14th 45pt
17/18 - away in Sept we lost 2-1. At home in Jan we drew 2-2. BHA 15th 40pt, B'mth 12th 44pt.
PREM; P4 . W0 D1 L1 . F2 A7 . W0 D0 L2 . F1 A4 . Pt1 GD-8

13/14 - under Oscar Garcia, at Dean Court we drew 1-1 in November. At New Year we drew 1-1 at the Amex. BHA 6th 72pt p-os, AFC 10th 66pt.
14/15 - under Sami Hyypia we lost 3-2 in Nov away. With Chris Hughton we lost 0-2 in Apr at home. Albion 20th, 47pt, Cherries 1st, 90pt - promoted.
CHAMP'S; P4 . W0 D1 L1 F1 A3 . W0 D1 L1 F3 A4 . Pt2 GD-3

WITHDEAN era; '01/2, '03/4, '06/7, '07/8, '10/11 @ League One
League One - south coast seasiders, with a slightly bleak outlook.
Cherries were pretty much a div2 (L1) club in years when Albion struggled toward their homecoming. The first time they came to town during the Withdean era in September 2001, it was BHA's centenary match. The world was reeling from shock of 9/11 but Brighton intended to mark their history and go for consecutive promotion.
'01/2 - Sept (H) Albion won 2-1 but Micky Adams left div2 shortly after for pastures new. The return fixture Feb (A) was drawn 1-1, although Peter Taylor still had B'ton headed for div1 (Championship). AFC Bournemouth went an opposite way, down to div3 (Lg2) in '01/2 but bounced back from '02/3.
'03/4 - one season and two managers later, Seagulls visited their Fitness First stadium in Oct to lose in L1 (A) 1-0 - come back Steve Coppell. By time of the reciprocal match in Feb, B'ton under Mark McGhee were on schedule for play-offs with yet another home victory 3-0 - left 'em beached.
'06/7 - two terms down the line, Albion crashed back to third tier and McGhee went after six fixtures. Dean Wilkins came in and Brnmth visited first, for 2-2 (H) in Sept. On New Year's Day, Cherries enjoyed icing on festive cake when snatching a stoppage time win 1-0 (A).
'07/8 - saw B'mouth deep in trouble in Lg1 and go into Administration. B'ton beat 'em 0-2 (A) at Dean Court and a last gasp 3-2 (H) at Withdean to avenge that New Year debacle exactly twelve months ago. The Dorset club was looking for investment and Harry Redknapp was 'interested'. After all he lived in the town and had been a big part of their checkered 20th century history on the south coast. They went down to Lg2 with a 10pts deduction, while we were 7pts off sixth spot and p-os. It had all gone south.
We met again after '9/10 when Cherries got promoted as runners-up from L2 and we'd been 13th in L1.
'10/11 - under Gus Poyet at W'dean in Oct it was 1-1. We lost 1-0 at Dean Court in Jan. BHA went on to become title holders, while AFCB got 6th but beat in p-o semi-finals on penalties.
C21 total EFL record; P14 . W3 D3 L1 F11 A9 . W1 D2 L4 F5 A8 . Pt17 GD-1

B'MOUTH FL L1 record from '99/00 to 18/19; 16, 7, 21, (4 @ L2), 9, 8, 17, 19, 21, (21, 2 @ L2), 6, 11, 2, (10, 1 @ Champ's), (16, 9, 12, 14 @ Prem).
PREM: Best = 9th, Worst = 16th, Ave = 13th (4yrs), Top ten - '17, Stayed up - once in bottom six '16.
Champ's: promo - '15. L1: promo - '13, rel - '02 & '08. L2 promo - '03 & '10.
PAST Managers; Mel Machin (1994-2000), Sean O'Driscoll (2000-6), Kevin Bond (2006-8), Jimmy Quinn (2008), Eddie Howe (2008-11), Lee Bradbury (2011-12), Paul Groves (2012),
FA CUP & LEAGUE CUP; finals - not qualified. LEAGUE TROPHY; finalists '98.

C21 background - in 2002, Martin Hinshelwood was about to be relieved of duties by Dick Knight after eight losses on the bounce, with a 'ten and out' limit imminent. Two years on from actually achieving 100 years, by 2003 Albion were back in div2 (league 1) having further; lost those two 'new' bosses, had an abortive initiation to div1 (championship) in '02/3 and were now about to wave goodbye to Steve Coppell. Thus changing their third manager in quick succession. September is remembered as the month war broke out in 1939 but for this 21st century equivalent, 'progress in our time' was getting a tad ridiculous.
By the second coming of AFC Bournemouth to our super sports complex in Feb '04, BHA was well on the way to reach a place in div2 play-offs. A 3-0 home victory certainly floated our boat. We had by then lashed Mark McGhee to the helm and he steered a straight course to the Millennium Stadium.
Another three years had gone by and following a second sinking from the Championship and indifferent form in League 1, Brighton had repeated their September phobia and dispensed with Mr McGhee's captaincy. Bournemouth were back simultaneously to renew bizarre connexions but hopefully not to haunt our recent memories. In '08/9 they actually beat the drop to non-league, inspite of getting a 17pt deduction.
In '12/13 Cherries were promoted to the Championship, then the Prem in 14/15.

BURNLEY Back to Top
CLARETS PREM record from 11/12 to 18/19; (13, 11, 2 @ Champ's), 19, (1 @ Champ's), 16, 7, 15. * * * Top ten - '18, Ave = 14th (4yrs)
STATUS; yo-yo club sprang to mind in this decade, for the historic northwest outfit. Second-Season Syndrome: 16/17 - 16th & 17/18 - 7th.
MANAGER; Sean Dyche (2012-19)
18/19 - P38 W11 D7 L20 F45 A68 GD-23 Pt40 Po15. Wins = 28.9%, Draws = 18.4%, Loss = 52.6%
17/18 - P38 W14 D12 L12 F36 A39 GD-3 Pt54 Po7. Wins = 36.8%, Draws = 31.5%, Loss = 31.5%
16/17 - P38 W11 D7 L20 F39 A55 GD-16 Pt40 Po16, Wins = 28.9%, Draws = 18.4%, Loss = 52.6%
Sean Dyche took over from Eddie Howe, gained promotion twice and in 6 seasons overall, now has a foothold in the Premier League.
SD CLARETS RECORD; to Aug 2018 - P259 W102 D75 L82 Wins = 39.3% EUROPA LEAGUE; 18/19 - gp stage

FALMER years; 11/12, 12/13, 13/14, 15/16 @ Champ's, 17/18, 18/19 @ Prem
18/19 - under Chris Hughton, away in Dec we lost 1-0. At home in Feb we lost 1-3. BHA = 17th 36pt, Burn = 15th 40pt
17/18 - at home in Dec we drew 0-0. Away in Apr we drew 0-0. BHA 15th 40pt, Burn 7th 54pt - Europa League.
PREM; P4 . W0 D1 L1 . F1 A3 . W0 D1 L1 . F0 A1 . Pt2 GD-3

11/12 - under Gus Poyet, at the Amex we lost with nine men 0-1 in December. At Turf Moor in April we also lost 1-0. BHA, 10th 66pt. Burnley, 13th 62pt.
12/13 - up at theirs in Sept we won 1-3. At ours we won 1-0 in Feb. BHA 4th 75pt p-os. Clarets 11th 61pt.
13/14 - under Oscar Garcia, Albion won at the Amex 2-0 in Aug. By Jan we drew 1-1 at Turf Moor. BHA 6th 72pt p-os, Clarets 2nd 93pt - promoted.
15/16 - under Chris Hughton, away in Nov we drew 1-1. At home in Apr we drew 2-2. Albion 3rd 89pt p-os, Clarets 1st 93pt - promoted
CHAMP'S; P8 . W2 D1 L1 F5 A3 . W1 D2 L1 F5 A4 . Pt12 GD+3

WITHDEAN era; '02/3, '04/5, '05/6 @ Champ's
Championship - just how did they stay there season after season?
This grim northern club was in div2 (L1) while Albion completed their div3 (L2) home programme at Gillingham and then began the Withdean era with a 'temporary' dwelling. In 2001 Burnley and Brighton separately went up a division. In 2002 we did it again. All fixtures below took place in the Championship or equivalent.
'02/3 - Martin Hinshelwood was div1 (C) first-day winning manager at Turf Moor - 10/8/02 A 1-3. Steve Coppell was in charge for return at W'dean - 28/12/02 H 2-2. BHA finished 23rd on 45pts and were relegated to div2, Burnley ended 16th with 55pts.
'04/5 - back in Champ's; under Mark McGhee, 20/11/04 H 0-1 - burned out flicker. 16/4/05 A 1-1 - we ignited after struck. B'ton 20th 51pts last day, Bn'ley 13th 60pts.
'05/6 - we went oop north first, 24/9/05 A 1-1 - Ref robbed us. 31/1/06 H 0-0 - Clarets used spoiling tactics. B'ton were a poor 24th 38pt and relegated, Bn'ley claimed lower mid table 17th 54pt. They even stayed there, as average as ever.
C21 total CHAMP'S: P14 . W2 D3 L2 . F7 A6 . W2 D4 L1 . F9 A6 . Pt19 GD+4

BURNLEY Championship record from '99/00 to 18/19; (2 @ L1), 7, 7, 16, 19, 13, 17, 15, 13, 5, (18 @ Prem), 8, 13, 11, 2, (19 @ Prem), 1, (16, 7, 15 @ Prem).
PREM: Best = 7th '18, Worst = 19th '15, Ave = 15th (5yrs), Stayed up - twice in bottom six '17 & '19, Relegated - twice '10, '15. Top ten - once from 5 years '18.
Champ's: promo - '09, '14, '16. L1: promo - '00.
PAST Managers; Stan Ternent (1998-2004), Steve Cotterill (2004-7), Owen Coyle (2007-10), Brian Laws (2010), Eddie Howe (2010-12),
FA CUP & LEAGUE CUP; finals - did not qualify. EUROPE; finals - did not qualify in the Prem era.

C21 background - their place-name numbs the brain in an instant, probably due to dire thoughts of that M6 motorway to hell. On the south coast there is a milder climate, outstanding natural beauty of chalk downlands, easy cosmopolitan cafe feel, plus warm water for a dip. Oh, after more than a decade of strife, Brighton were granted permission to build a new stadium in 2007. Meanwhile ageing Turf Moor, with snow capped Pennine backdrop, is tinkered with at 21st century intervals - during safe and steady tier two existence. But hey the world turned following a history of baggage along Brunshaw Road - somewhere deep in a Lancashire backwater. In '08/9 almost unbelievably, Burnley got into the Premiership via p-o final versus Sheff Utd. They were quickly back down from cloud9 in time for '10/11. Clarets ended their usual Championship season in 8th place. They regained the prem in 13/14, dropped down again in 14/15 but bounced back for 16/17.

CHELSEA Back to Top
BLUES PREM record from 11/12 to 18/19; 6, 3, 3, 1, 10, 1, 5, 3. * * * Title - 2 times (14/15 & 16/17), Top four - 3 times, Ave = 4th (8yrs)
STATUS; one of the 3 London giants, Chelsea have an excellent record this century as title winners.
MANAGER; Frank Lampard (2019), previously Maurizio Sarri (2018-19), Antonio Conte (2016-18).
18/19 - P38 W21 D9 L8 F63 A39 GD+24 Pt72 Po3. Wins = 55.2%, Draws = 23.6%, Loss = 21% - Maurizio Sarri
Turnover of managers in s-w of the metropolis is regular as Russian owned clockwork. Conte did two yearly cycles max as is the norm.
17/18 - P38 W21 D7 L10 F62 A38 GD+24 Pt70 Po5. Wins = 55.2%, Draws = 18.4%, Loss = 26.3% - Antonio Conte.
16/17 - P38 W30 D3 L5 F85 A33 GD+52 Pt93 Po1, Wins = 78.9%, Draws = 7.89%, Loss = 13.1% - Antonio Conte.
Antonio Conte was lined up for the job in 2015 as Jose Mourinho's reign hit the skids. He didn't disappoint either, proving to be a winner via skill & passion by a long way.
AC BLUES RECORD; to Aug 2017 - P47 W37 D3 L7 Wins = 78.7%
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE; 11/12 - winners, 12/13 - group stage, 13/14 - s-f, 14/15 - last 16, 15/16 - last 16, 17/18 - last 16 (2nd in group).
EUROPA LEAGUE; 12/13 - winners, 18/19 - winners.

FALMER years - 17/18, 18/19 @ Prem
18/19 - under Chris Hughton, at home in Dec we lost 1-2. Away in April we lost 3-0. BHA = 17th 36pt, Chls 3rd 72pt - Champions League
17/18 - away on Boxing Day we lost 2-0. At home in Jan we lost 0-4. BHA 15th 40pt, Chls 5th 70pt ~ Europa Lg.
PREM; P4 . W0 D0 L2 . F1 A6 . W0 D0 L2 . F0 A5 . Pt0 GD-10

Withdean era - no meetings.
CHELSEA PREM record from '99/00 to 18/19; 5, 6, 6, 4, 2, 1, 1, 2, 2, 3, 1, 2, 6, 3, 3, 1, 10, 1, 5, 3.
PREM Best = 1st - 5 titles (04/5, 05/6, 09/10, 14/15, 16/17), Worst = 10th (15/16), Ave = 3rd (20yrs).
Title Favs; 05/6 - 1st, 06/7 - 2nd, 09/10 - 1st, 10/11 - 2nd, 14/15 - 1st, 15/16 - 10th.
Runners-up - 4 times (03/4, 06/7, 07/8 & 10/11), Top four - 5 times from 20yrs, Top six - 5 times.
PL HONOURS; since the Premier League started in 1992, Chelsea (an inaugural member) won the title 5 times in the 25 years to 2017. Those years as champions being in the new century after the 99/00 season.
PAST Managers; Gianluca Vialli (1998-2000), Claudio Ranieri (2000-4), Jose Mourinho (2004-7), Avram Grant (2007-8), Luiz Felipe Scolari 2008-9), Guus Hiddink (2009), Carlo Ancelotti (2009-11), Andre Villas-Boas (2011-12), Roberto De Matteo (2012), Rafa Benitez (2012-13), Jose Mourinho (2013-15), Guus Hiddink (2016), Antonio Conte (2016-18), Maurizio Sarri (2018-19)
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE; winners '12. finalists '08. EUROPA LEAGUE; winners 19, winners '13.
FA CUP; winners '97, '00, '07, '09, '10, '12, 18, finalists '94, '02, '17, s-f '96, '06, '13. LEAGUE CUP; winners '98, '05, '07, '15, finalists '08, '19.

EAGLES PREM record from 11/12 to 18/19; (17, 5 @ Champ's), 11, 10, 15, 14, 11, 12. * * * Ave = 13th (6yrs), Top ten - '15.
STATUS; Palace regained a place in the Prem in 2013, although are a bottom-half club subsequently. Second-Season Syndrome: 13/14 - 11th then 14/15 - 10th.
MANAGER; Roy Hodgson (2017-19), previously Frank de Boer (2017)
18/19 - P38 W14 D7 L17 F51 A53 GD-2 Pt49 Po12. Wins = 36.8%, Draws 18.4%, Loss = 44.7% - R Hodgson
Hodgson got Eagles flying again after they were grounded in opening weeks of their 5th straight PL campaign.
17/18 - P38 W11 D11 L16 F45 A55 GD-10 Pt44 Po11. Wins = 28.9%, Draws = 28.9%, Loss = 42.1% - Hodgson & de Boer.
RH PALACE RECORD; to Aug 18 - P37 W12 D11 L14 Wins = 32.4%
16/17 - P38 W12 D5 L21 F50 A63 GD-13 Pt41 Po14, Wins = 31.5%, Draws = 13.1%, Loss = 55.2% - Alan Pardew & Sam Allardyce.
Pardew & Allardyce were successively responsible for Eagles fourth season in the Premier League since 2013.

FALMER years; 11/12, 12/13 @ Champ's, 17/18, 18/19 @ Prem. FA Cup - see History&Travel, previous encounters.
18/19 - under Chris Hughton, at home in Dec we won 3-1. Away in March we won 1-2. BHA = 17th 36pt, CP = 12th 49pt
17/18 - at home Nov we drew 0-0. Away in Apr we lost 3-2. BHA 15th 40pt, CP 11th 44pt
PREM; P4 . W1 D1 L0 . F3 A1 . W1 D0 L1 . F4 A4 . Pt4 GD+2

11/12 - under Gus Poyet, at the Amex in Sept we lost 1-3. At Selhurst in Jan we drew 1-1. BHA, 10th, 66pt. CP, 17th 56pt.
12/13 - at theirs in Dec we lost 3-0. At ours we won 3-0 in March. BHA 4th 75pt. CP 5th 72pt. In p-o s-f; A 0-0, H 0-2. Palace promoted via p-o final.
CHAMP'S; P4 . W1 D0 L1 F4 A3 . W0 D1 L1 F1 A4 . Pt4 GD-2

WITHDEAN era; '02/3, '05/6 @ Champ's
Championship - stand up if you visit Croydon.
The Eagles had tasted Premiership fare when Seagulls fed on scraps in div3 (L2) at Gillingham. Palace were a regular div1 (C) club as Albion climbed out of lower leagues.
'02/3 - Brighton suffered a horrendous opening to the new season when elevating to div1 (C). Ex-Palace manager Steve Coppell came on board to bale us out, initially at Selhurst Park; 26/10/02 A 5-0 - B'fans went v quiet. He was then trying to work W'dean miracles; 25/3/03 H 0-0 - better than a thrashing. B'ton still had hope on the last day but went back down from 23rd with 45pts. Palace made 14th on 59pts.
'05/6 - Mark McGhee was in the chair trying again to keep BHA alive in the Championship. One night we went back; 18/10/05 A 1-0 - were a right handful and done 'em. A month later at ours; 20/11/05 H 2-3 - fell apart at death. B'ton ended up bottom, while Palace got to p-os 6th 75pt. But lost to Watford in semi's - aaaahhh.
C21 total CHAMP'S: P8 . W1 D1 L2 . F6 A6 . W1 D1 L2 . F2 A9 . Pt8 GD-7

PALACE Championship record from '99/00 to 18/19; 15, 21, 10, 14, 6, (18 @ Prem), 6, 12, 5, 15, 21, 20, 17, 5, (11, 10, 15, 14, 11, 12 @ Prem).
PREM: Best = 10th (14/15), Worst = 18th (04/5), Ave = 14th (7yrs), Top ten - once from 7 years '15, Stayed up - once in bottom six '16, Relegated - '05.
Champ's: promo - '04, '13, p-os - '06, '08.
PL HONOURS; in 1992 Crystal Palace were one of the original 22 clubs that competed in the band new Premier League. Only six of those inaugural members stayed in the top flight for all 25 years until 2017. Four of these collectively won 23 tiles during that period.
PAST Managers; Steve Coppell (1999-2000), Alan Smith (2000-1), Steve Bruce (2001), Trevor Francis (2001-3), Steve Kember (2003), Iain Dowie (2003-6), Peter Taylor (2006-7), Neil Warnock (2007-10), Paul Hart (2010), George Burley (2010-11), Dougie Freedman (2011-12), Ian Holloway (2012-14), Tony Pulis (2014), Neil Warnock (2014), Alan Pardew (2015-16), Sam Allardyce (2016-17), Frank de Boer (2017)
FA CUP; finalists '16, s-f '95. LEAGUE CUP; finals - did not qualify in Prem era.

C21 info - Palace got to the Premiership for '04/5 but only spent a season there. They were mid table mediocrity in '06/7 but made a bid for rejoining elite in '07/8 once more via play-offs. As in '05/6 they were k-o'd again in semi-finals - shame! Btw in 1924 Eagles ended up in the Selhurst Park nest from Croydon Common but believe it or not, there was talk in 2007 of relocating to their historic site at what is now the National Sports centre. It really wasn't gonna happen now, was it?
Then big shocks for '9/10, when CP got deducted 10pts for Administration. Eagles drew at Wednesday in the final game to stay in the Championship and send Owls down to L1. They also stayed up in '10/11 by ending in 20th place.

EVERTON Back to Top
TOFFEES PREM Lge record from 11/12 to 18/19; 7, 6, 5, 11, 11, 7, 8, 8. * * * Ave = 8th (8yrs), Top ten - 6 times.
STATUS; this century Everton have been a lesser light in the elite but are kinda like best of the rest.
MANAGER; Marco Silva (2018-19), previously Sam Allardyce (2017-18).
18/19 - P38 W15 D9 L14 F54 A46 GD+6 Pt54 Po8. Wins = 39.4%, Draws = 23.6%, Loss = 36.8% - Marco Silva.
Allardyce pulled Toffees out of the sticky stuff and restored their regular taste for top eights.
17/18 - P38 W13 D10 L15 F44 A58 GD-14 Pt49 Po8. Wins = 34.2%, Draws = 26.3%, Loss = 39.4% - Sam Allardyce & Ronald Koeman.
16/17 - P38 W17 D10 L11 F62 A44 GD+18 Pt61 Po7, Wins = 44.7%, Draws = 26.3, Loss = 28.9% - Ronald Koeman.
Koeman took the job as successful manager at Southampton, initially continued in that vein until sacked in Oct 17, at what is a much bigger club.
RK TOFFEES RECORD; to Aug 2017 - P41 W18 D10 L13 Wins = 43.9% EUROPA LEAGUE; 14/15 - last 16, 17/18 - group stage

FALMER years - 17/18, 18/19 @ Prem
18/19 - under Chris Hughton, away in Nov we lost 3-1. At home in Dec we won 1-0. BHA = 17th 36pt, Evtn = 8th 54pt
17/18 - at home in Oct we drew 1-1. Away in Mar we lost 2-0. BHA 15th 40pt, Evtn 8th 49pt
PREM; P4 . W1 D1 L0 .F2 A1 . W0 D0 L2 . F1 A5 . Pt4 GD-3

Withdean era - no meetings.
EVERTON PREM Lge record from '99/00 to 18/19; 13, 16, 15, 7, 17, 4, 11, 6, 5, 5, 8, 7, 7, 6, 5, 11, 11, 7, 8, 8.
PREM: Best = 4th (04/5), Worst = 17th (03/4), Ave = 9th (20yrs).
Top four - once '05, Top six - 5 times from 20yrs, Top ten - 7 times, Stayed up - 3 times in bottom six 01, 02 & 04.
PL HONOURS; the Premier League began in 1992 and Everton were one of merely six original clubs to have been there for the full 25 years to 2018.
PAST Managers; Walter Smith (1998-2002), David Moyes (2002-13), Roberto Martinez (2013-16), David Unsworth (2016 & 17 twice caretaker), Ronald Koeman (2016-17), Sam Allardyce (2017-18)
FA CUP; winners '95, finalists '09, s-f '12, '16. LEAGUE CUP; finalists - not in the Prem era from 1992. C21 EUROPE; EL finals - did not qualify.

FOXES PREM record from 11/12 to 18/19; (9, 6, 1 @ Champ's), 14, 1, 12, 9, 9. * * * Title - '16, Ave = 9th (5yrs).
STATUS; this century the club fell from grace into League One, elevating on the bounce in 2009. On returning to the elite they sensationally won the PL title in 2016.
Second-Season Syndrome; 14/15 - 14th then 15/16 - 1st!
MANAGER; Brendan Rodgers (2019), previously Claude Puel (2017-19), Craig Shakespeare (2017)
18/19 - P38 W15 D7 L16 F51 A48 GD+3 Pt52 Po9. Wins = 39.4%, Draws = 18.4%, Loss = 42.1% - Claude Puel & Brendan Rodgers
Puel restored oder to a side failing to fulfill ongoing PL potential as top half at least.
17/18 - P38 W12 D11 L15 F56 A60 GD-4 Pt47 Po9. Wins = 31.5%, Draws = 28.9%, Loss = 39.4% - Puel & Shakespeare.
CP FOXES RECORD; to Aug '18 - P35 W13 D10 L12 Wins = 34.2%.
16/17 - P38 W12 D8 L18 F48 A63 GD-15 Pt44 Po12, Wins = 31.5%, Draws = 21%, Loss = 47.3% - Craig Shakespeare & Claudio Ranieri.
Shakespeare latterly turned around a failing campaign by the defending champions under title-winner Claudio Ranieri.
CS to Aug '17 - P16 W8 D3 L5. Wins = 50% CHAMPIONS LEAGUE; 16/17 - q-f

FALMER years; 11/12, 12/13, 13/14 @ Champ's, 17/18, 18/19 @ Prem
18/19 - under Chris Hughton, at home in Nov we drew 1-1. Away in Feb we lost 2-1. BHA = 17th 36pt, LC 9th 52pt
17/18 - away in Aug we lost 2-0. At home in Mar we lost 0-2. BHA 15th 40pt, LC 9th 47pt
PREM; P4 . W0 D1 L1 . F1 A3 . W0 D0 L2 . F1 A4 . Pt1 GD-5

11/12 - under Gus Poyet, we lost 1-0 at renamed King Power Stad in Sept. At the Amex we won 1-0 in Feb. BHA, 10th 66pt. LC, 9th 66pt.
12/13 - at theirs we lost 1-0 in October. At ours we drew 1-1 in April. BHA 4th 75pt p-os. LC 6th 68pt p-os.
13/14 - under OscarGarcia, we won at the Amex 3-1 in Dec. We won 1-4 at King Power in April. BHA 6th 72pt, LC 1st 102pt - promoted.
CHAMP'S; P6 . W2 D1 L0 F5 A2 . W1 D0 L2 F4 A3 Pt10 GD+4

WITHDEAN era; '02/3, '04/5, '05/6 @ Champ's, '08/9 @ L1
Championship & League One - Foxes on the run.
City were a Prem club during the rise of BHA from ground-share at Priestfield to Withdean era temporary home.
'02/3 - we first met when ex-BHA boss Micky Adams took 'em up from div1. H = 0-1 and A = 2-0. Fixtures took place at Championship level for 2004 to 2006 when Mark McGhee was Albion boss. His aim was for consolidation and the Walkers Stadium offered a challenge like many other pukka grounds at this level.
'04/5 - campaign; 30/8/04 A 0-1 - we still led at 90min. Back at W'dean; 9/4/05 H 1-1 - less likely to lead. B'ton survived in 20th with 51pts, Leics made 15th on 57pts.
'05/6 - the following term; 27/9/05 A 0-0 - crucial first goal didn't. For the re-match; 11/2/06 H 1-2 - conceded early, all over. BHA were relegated from 24th, City finished in lower mid table again, 16th 54pt. Leicester were relegated from the Championship in '07/8 to play in League One.
'08/9 - in Oct at ours, we edged it 3-2 with a late og winner. Micky Adams was pleased. At theirs in Jan it finished nil-nil. They went up as Champs while we stayed up.
C21 total EFL record: P14 . W3 D2 L2 . F10 A8 . W2 D2 L3 . F5 A5 . Pt19 GD+2

CITY Championship records from '99/00 to 18/19; (8, 13, 20 @ Prem), 2, (18 @ Prem), 15, 16, 19, 22, (1 @ L1), 5, 10, 9, 6, 1, (14, 1, 12, 9, 9 @ Prem).
PREM: Best = 1st (15/16), Worst = 20th (01/2), Ave = 12th (9yrs). Top ten - 3 times '00, '18, '19, Relegated - 2 times '02 & '04.
Champ's: promo - '03 & '14, p-os - '10 & '13, rel - '08.
PL HONOURS; since the Premier League began in 1992 merely six clubs have won the title and six have also been ever present in the 25 years to 2017. Of the six winners, Leicester City were the one & only team not to have been an inaugural member of the Prem.
PAST Managers; Martin O'Neill (1995-2000), Peter Taylor (2000-1), Dave Bassett (2001-2), Micky Adams (2002-4), Craig Levein (2004-6), Robert Kelly (2006-7), Martin Allen (2007), Gary Megson (2007), Ian Holloway (2007-8), Nigel Pearson (2008-10), Paulo Sousa (2010), Sven Goran Eriksson (2010-11), Nigel Pearson (2011-15), Claudio Ranieri (2015-17), Craig Shakespeare (2017), Claude Puel (2017-19)
FA CUP; finalists - not in the Prem era. LEAGUE CUP; winners '97, '00. finalists '99. C21 EUROPE; CL finals - '17 q-f

C21 info - Micky Adams parted company with the combative little midfielder Dennis Wise at Leicester, on occasion of a pre-season scrap among his squad. Adams later installed him again when manager at Coventry and don't bother asking Brighton fans about being wise after those proverbial Championship events at brand new Ricoh Arena either. Micky Adams remarked, after hiring and during Wise's Sky Blue period, 'I can understand lesser managers than myself would not have done it. But I don't have to worry about my job because I'm a better manager'. Well, that old football world certainly turned some and while one bloke ended up in lowly Essex as assistant, the other got lucky and some. Nevermind, Adams again proved his class by getting positive results for BHA against Leicester in League1. Pity it all flattered to deceive.
For '9/10, Foxes made Championship p-o's in a season's cunning plan on the hunt. In '10/11 they finished 10th at level two. Having later reached the Prem, City were unexpected champs in 15/16.

REDS PREM record from 11/12 to 18/19; 8, 7, 2, 6, 8, 4, 4, 2. * * * Runners-Up - 2 times (13/14, 18/19), Ave = 5th (8yrs) Top four - 2 times.
STATUS; one of the big 4 northwest clubs, Liverpool have not been strong enough to win the title this century.
MANAGER; Jurgen Klopp (2015-19)
18/19 - P38 W30 D7 L1 F89 A22 GD+67 Pt97 Po2. Wins = 78.9%, Draws = 18.4%, Loss = 2.6% - J Klopp
17/18 - P38 W21 D12 L5 F84 A38 GD46 Pt75 Po4. Wins = 55.2%, Draws = 31.5%, Loss = 13.1% - J Klopp
16/17 - P38 W22 D10 L6 F78 A42 GD+36 Pt76 Po4, Wins = 57.8%, Draws = 26.3%, Loss = 15.7% - J Klopp
Jurgen Klopp took over from Brendan Rodgers who was fairly successful in 3 seasons previously. But Klopp's brief is to actually head the division.
JK REDS RECORD; to Aug 2018 - P155 W81 D44 L30. Wins = 52.2%
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE; 14/15 - group stage, 17/18 - finalists (top of group), 18/19 - winners. EUROPA LEAGUE; 12/13 - last 32, 14/15 - last 32, 15/16 - runners up.

FALMER years - 17/18, 18/19 @ Prem. League Cup & FA Cup - go to History & Travel, previous encounters.
18/19 - under Chris Hughton, away in Aug we lost 1-0. At home in Jan we lost 0-1. BHA = 17th 36pt, Liv = 2nd 97pt - runners up.
17/18 - at home in Dec we lost 1-5. Away in May we lost 4-0. BHA 15th 40pt, Liv 4th 75pt ~ Champions Lg.
PREM; P4 . W0 D0 L2 . F1 A6 . W0 D0 L2 . F0 A5 . Pt0 GD-10

Withdean era - no meetings.
LIVERPOOL PREM record from '99/00 to 18/19; 4, 3, 2, 5, 4, 5, 3, 3, 4, 2, 7, 6, 8, 7, 2, 6, 8, 4, 4, 2.
Best = 2nd (01/2, 08/9, 13/14, 18/19), Worst = 8th (11/12 & 15/16), Ave = 5th (20yrs).
Runners-up - 4 times, Top four - 8 times from 20yrs, Top six - 4 times, Top ten - 4 times.
PL HONOURS; in the 25 years to 2017, from start of the Premier League in 1992, Reds (a founding member) have not been able to win a title.
PAST Managers; Gerard Houllier (1998-2004), Rafael Benitez (2004-10), Roy Hodgson (2010-11), Kenny Dalglish (2011-12), Brendan Rodgers (2012-15),
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE; winners 19, winners '05. finalists '07, 18. EUROPA LEAGUE; winners '01. finalists '16.
FA CUP; winners '01, '06, finalists '96, '12, s-f '15. LEAGUE CUP; winners '95, '01, '03, '12. finalists '05, '16.

FALMER INFO - during the first season at the Amex (11/12), Albion met the Reds in the League Cup there and also, later away at Anfield in the FA Cup.

MAN CITY Back to Top
CITY PREM records from 11/12 to 18/19; 1, 2, 1, 2, 4, 3, 1, 1.
Titles - 4 times (11/12, 13/14, 17/18 & 18/19), Runners-up - 2 times (12/13 & 14/15), Top Four - 2 times, Ave = 2nd (8yrs)
STATUS; big money infusion for the second decade of this century, resulted in City becoming a force to rival Man United, Liverpool & Everton in the northwest.
MANAGER; Pep Guardiola (2016-19)
18/19 - P38 W32 D2 L4 F95 A23 GD+72 Pt98 Po1. Wins = 84.2%, Draws = 5.2%, Loss = 10.5% - P Guardiola
17/18 - P38 W32 D4 L2 F106 A27 GD78 Pt100 Po1. Wins = 84.2%, Draws = 10.5%, Loss = 5.2% - P Guardiola.
16/17 - P38 W23 D9 L6 F80 A39 GD+41 Pt78 Po3, Wins = 60.5%, Draws = 23.6%, Loss = 15.7% - P Guardiola.
Pep Guardiola was lined up for the job in Manuel Pelligrini's last season of three largely successful campaigns. PG was tipped as the best coach after 3 La Liga titles, 2 Champions Leagues and numerous Cups in Europe & further afield.
PG CITY RECORD; to Aug 2018 - P113 W77 D19 L17 Wins = 68.1%
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE; 11/12 - group stage, 12/13 - group stage, 13/14 - last 16, 14/15 - last 16, 15/16 - s-f, 16/17 - last 16, 17/18 - q-f, 18/19 - q-f.
EUROPA LEAGUE; 11/12 - last 16.

FALMER Years - 17/18, 18/19 @ Prem
18/19 - under Chris Hughton, away in Sept we lost 2-0. At home in May we lost 1-4. BHA 17th 36pt, MC 1st 98pt - retained title.
17/18 - on opening day in Aug at the Amex we lost 0-2. Away in May we lost 3-1. BHA 15th 40pt, MC 1st 100pt - title winners
PREM; P4 . W0 D0 L2 . F1 A6 . W0 D0 L2 . F1 A5 . Pt0 GD-9

Withdean Era - no league meetings.
CITIZENS PREM records from '99/00 to 18/19; (2 @ Champ's), 18, (1 @ Champ's), 9, 16, 8, 15, 14, 9, 10, 5, 3, 1, 2, 1, 2, 4, 3, 1, 1.
PREM: Best = 1st - 4 titles (11/12, 13/14, 17/18, 18/19), Worst = 18th (00/01), Ave = 7th (18yrs). Title Favs; 12/13 - 2nd, 13/14 - 1st, 16/17 - 3rd, 17/18 - 1st, 18/19 - 1st.
Runners-up - 2 times '13, '15, Top four - 3 times, Top six - once, Top ten - 4 times from 18yrs, Stayed up - 2 times in bottom six '04 & '06, Relegated - once '01.
Champ's: promo - '00 & '02.
PL HONOURS; since the start of the Premier League in 1992, Manchester City (an inaugural club) had thrice won the title in the 25 years to 2018. Each of those years as champions were during the second decade of the new century.
PAST Managers; Joe Royle (1998-2001), Kevin Keegan (2001-5), Stuart Pearce (2005-7), Sven Goran Eriksson (2007-8), Mark Hughes (2008-9), Roberto Mancini (2009-13), Manuel Pellegrini (2013-16),
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE; finals - '16 s-f. EUROPA LEAGUE; finals - '09 q-f.
FA CUP; winners '11 & 19. finalists '13. LEAGUE CUP; winners '14, '16, '18 & '19.

C21 INFO - prior to matches played at the Amex (from 2011), lower league Albion had met City in the League Cup - see Withdean era previous encounters.

MAN UTD Back to Top
UNITED PREM records from 11/12 to 18/19; 2, 1, 7, 4, 5, 6, 2, 6. * * * Title - '13, Runner-up - '12 & '18, Ave = 4th (8yrs), Top four - '15.
STATUS; a top 3 success story since well before turn of the century, recent seasons have seen a relative decline in fortunes.
MANAGER; Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (2018-19), previously Jose Mourinho (2016-18)
18/19 - P38 W19 D9 L10 F65 A54 GD+11 Pt66 Po6. Wins = 50%, Draws = 23.6%, Loss = 26.3% - O G Solskjaer
17/18 - P38 W25 D6 L7 F68 A28 GD40 Pt81 Po2. Wins = 65.7%, Draws = 15.7%, Loss = 18.4% - J Mourinho.
16/17 - P38 W18 D15 L5 F54 A29 GD+25 Pt69 Po6, Wins = 47.3%, Draws = 39.4%, Loss = 13.1% - J Mourinho.
Jose Mourinho replaced Louis van Gaal and previously David Moyes in a bid to restore unparalleled success achieved under Sir Alex Ferguson. In the event it remained a tough act to follow.
JM UTD RECORD; to Aug 2018 - P120 W74 D25 L21 Wins = 61.6%
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE; 11/12 - group stage, 12/13 - last 16, 13/14 q-f, 15/16 - group stage, 17/18 - last 16 (top of group), 18/19 - q-f.
EUROPA LEAGUE; 11/12 - last 16, 15/16 - last 16, 16/17 - winners

FALMER years - 17/18, 18/19 @ Prem. FA Cup - see History & Travel previous encounters.
18/19 - under Chris Hughton, at home in Aug we won 3-2. Away in Jan we lost 2-1. BHA = 17th 36pt, MU = 6th 66pt
17/18 - away in Nov we lost 1-0. At home in May we won 1-0. BHA 15th 40pt, MU 2nd 81pt runner up.
PREM; P4 . W2 D0 L0 . F4 A2 . W0 D0 L2 . F1 A3 . Pt6 GD0

Withdean era - no meetings.
RED DEVILS PREM records from '99/00 to 18/19; 1, 1, 3, 1, 3, 3, 2, 1, 1, 1, 2, 1, 2, 1, 7, 4, 5, 6, 2, 6.
Best = 1st (8 titles), Worst = 7th (13/14), Ave = 3rd (20yrs).
Title Favs; 99/00 - 1st, 00/1 - 1st, 01/2 - 3rd, 02/3 - 1st, 03/4 - 3rd, 07/8 - 1st. 08/9 - 1st, 11/12 - 2nd.
Runner-up - 4 times (05/6, 09/10, 11/12, 17/18), Top four - 4 times from 20yrs, Top six - 4 times.
PL HONOURS; since start of the Premier League in 1992 when Manchester United were a founder member, they have won the title no less than 13 times in the 25 years to 2018. C20 Prem champs - 92/93, 93/94, 95/96, 96/97, 98/99. Runners-up - 94/95, 97/98
PAST Managers; Sir Alex Ferguson (1986-2013), David Moyes (2013-14), Louis van Gaal (2014-16),
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE; winners '99, '08. finalists '09, '11. EUROPA LEAGUE; winners '17.
FA CUP; winners '94, '96, '99, '04, '16, finalists '95, '05, '07, s-f '09, '11, 18. LEAGUE CUP; winners '92, '06, '09, '10, '17. finalists '94, '03.

EURO INFO - United qualified for the Europa League in 2016, worked thru group & aggregate stages, won the final in 2017 and thus became eligible for the next Champions League competition.

MAGPIES PREM records from 11/12 to 18/19; 5, 16, 10, 15, 18, (1 @ Champ's), 10, 13. * * * Ave = 12th (7yrs), Top six - '12, Relegated - '16.
STATUS; regaining a Prem place for the northeast giants continues their stats as a recent run of the mill side in the top division.
Second-Season Syndrome: 10/11 - 12th then 11/12 - 5th, 17/18 - 10th then 18/19 - 13th
MANAGER; tba, previously Rafael Benitez (2016-19)
18/19 - P38 W12 D9 L17 F42 A48 GD-6 Pt45 Po13 Wins = 31.5%, Draws = 23.6%, Loss = 44.7% - R Benitez
17/18 - P38 W12 D8 L18 F39 A47 GD-8 Pt44 Po10. Wins = 31.5%, Draws = 21%, Loss = 47.3% - R Benitez.
Rafa Benitez stayed with Magpies to steer them out of the Championship and attempt to re-establish in the elite.
RB MAGPIES RECORD; to Aug 2018 - P104 W49 D21 L34 Wins = 47.1%
EUROPA LEAGUE; 12/13 - q-f.

FALMER Years - 16/17 @ Championship, 17/18, 18/19 @ Prem. FA Cup - go to History &Travel, previous encounters.
18/19 - under Chris Hughton, away in Oct we won 0-1. At home in April we drew 1-1. BHA = 17th 36pt, NU = 13th 45pt
17/18 - at home in Sept we won 1-0. Away in Dec we drew 0-0. BHA 15th 40pt, NU 10th 44pt.
PREM; P4 . W1 D1 L0 . F2 A1 . W1 D1 L0 . F1 A0 . Pt8 GD+2

16/17 - under Chris Hughton, at St James Park in Aug we lost 2-0. At the Amex in Feb we lost 1-2. BHA 2nd 93pt promoted, NU 1st 94pt champions.
CHAMP'S; P2 . W0 D0 L1 F1 A2 . W0 D0 L1 F0 A2 . Pt0 GD-3

Withdea Era - no meetings.
UNITED PREM records from '99/00 to 18/19; 11, 11, 4, 3, 5, 14, 7, 13, 12, 18, (1 @ Champ's), 12, 5, 16, 10, 15, 18, (1 @ Champ's), 10, 13.
PREM: Best = 3rd (02/3), Worst = 18th (08/9 & 15/16), Ave = 11th (18yrs). Top four - 2 times '02 & '03, Top six - 2 times from 18yrs, Top ten - 3 times, Stayed up - 2 times in bottom six '13 & '15, Relegated - 2 times '09 & '16. Champ's: promo - '10 & '17.
PL HONOURS; since the Premier League started in 1992, Newcastle United have twice been Runners-up - 95/96 & 96/97.
PAST Managers; Sir Bobby Robson (1999-2004), Graeme Souness (2004-6), Glenn Roeder (2006-7), Sam Allardyce (2007-8), Kevin Keegan (2008), Joe Kinnear (2008-9), Alan Shearer (2009), Chris Hughton (2009-10), Alan Pardew (2010-14), John Carver (2014-15), Steve McClaren (2015-16), Rafaell Benitez (2016-19)
FA CUP; finalists '98 & '99, s-f '00, '05. LEAGUE CUP; finals - nq. C21 EUROPE; EL finals - '04 s-f, '05 q-f, '13 q-f.

C21 INFO - after being a largely successful outfit in the Prem since Y2k, United hit the skids during '15/16 and were relegated.

NORWICH Back to Top
PREM record from 11/12 to 18/19; 12, 11, 18 @ Prem (3 @ C), 19, (8, 14, 1 @ C). * * * Relegated - '14 & '16 (in 4yrs). Ave = 15th.
STATUS; considered a Prem outfit just marking time when in level2... or is it vice versa? Second season syndrome: 11/12 - 12th then 12/13 - 11th.
MANAGER; Daniel Farke (2017)

FALMER Years; 14/15, 16/17 @ Champ's
14/15 - under Sami Hyypia; at Carrow Road in November we drew 3-3. With Chris Hughton at the Amex in April we lost 0-1. Albion 20th 47pt, Canaries 3rd 86pt - promo.
16/17 - at home in Oct we won 5-0. Away in Apr we lost 2-0. BHA 2nd 93pt promoted, NC 8th 70pt
Champ's record: P4 . W1 D0 L1 . F5 A1 . W0 D1 L1 . F3 A5 . Pt4 GD+2

WITHDEAN era; '02/3, '05/6 @ Champ's, '09/10 @ L1
Championship & League One - does Delia still cut the mustard?
Canaries were a typical middle order div1 club during Seagulls rise from div3 early in the Withdean era. By 2002 Brighton joined some quality opposition in what is now called the Championship.
02/3 - Martin Hinshelwood was manager and primed to keep us up. Norwich arrived very early in the season at W'dean; 17/8/02 H 0-2 - our first loss. Steve Coppell replaced MH as boss with the same remit. He took us to Carrow Road at Xmas; 26/12/02 A 0-1 - our first away win. B'ton 23rd relegated. City 8th.
05/6 - next in Champs Mark McGhee was gaffer and had similar aims to predecessors. On our Sussex turf; 1/10/05 H 1-3 - too big a gulf. Up in Norfolk on Valentine's eve; 14/2/06 A 3-0 - luck and love deserted. B'ton fell into League1 from bottom pos. N'wich were 8th again.
9/10 - in L1, Gus Poyet was in charge. At theirs in Nov, it was a 4-1 defeat - oh no! In Feb for ours, a 1-2 defeat - oh yes!! BHA got to 13th 59pts but NC completed 1st as champions 95pts.
C21 total EFL record: P10 . W1 D0 L4 . F7 A8 . W1 D1 L3 . F5 A12 . Pt7 GD-8

Championship records from '99/00 to 18/19; 12, 15, 6, 8, 1, (19 @ Prem), 9, 16, 17, 22, (1 @ L1), 2, (12, 11, 18 @ Prem) 3, (19 @ Prem), 8, 14, 1.
Prem: relegated - 3 times (in 5yrs) '05, '14 & '16. Ave = 16th. Champ's: promo - '04, '11, '15, '19, p-os - '02. rel - '09. L1: promo - '10.
NORWICH CITY were one of the original 22 clubs to play in the new Premier League of 1992.
PAST Managers; Bruce Rioch (1998-2000), Bryan Hamilton (2000), Nigel Worthington (2000-6), Peter Grant (2006-7), Glenn Roeder (2007-9), Bryan Gunn (2009), Paul Lambert (2009-12), Chris Hughton (2012-14), Neil Adams (2014), Alex Neil (2015-17), Alan Irvine (2017), Daniel Farke (2017)

Info - Canaries did get to the Prem once before, when Albion regained tier-two status in '04/5. Delia verbally burnt the cakes but it was all part of promoting a winter collection for catering at Carrow Road. In '06/7 Norwich were barely mid table. In '07/8 they merely repeated the feat, possibly as something of a Championship diet plan. For '08/9 they went from frying pan to pot boiler, in fire of League1. In '10/11 Canaries felt the inferno of Championship campaigns and finished runner-up. The East Anglian side lasted 3 seasons in the Prem but dropped off their perch in '13/14. And then again in '15/16. At end of 18/19 Canaries were champions of lev2.

SHEFF UTD Back to Top
PREM record from 11/12 to 18/19; (3, 5, 7, 5, 11, 1 @ L1), (10, 2 @ Champ's)
STATUS; a club with ancient history at the highest level and vying to find status quo after many decades.
MANAGER; Chris Wilder (2016)
Falmer years - no meetings

WITHDEAN era - '02/3, '04/5, '05/6 @ Champ's
Championship - wished to join the elite again.
Blades were a div1 (Champ's) club when Albion were in div3 (League Two), struggling at Gillingham prior to a return to north Brighton suburbs for 1999. All fixtures in the Withdean era took place in the Championship.
02/3 - with Martin Hinshelwood as boss; 19/10/02 H 2-4. Replaced by Steve Coppell by 18/3/03 A 2-1. B'ton were 23rd rel, Sheff U 3rd 80pts p-os.
04/5 - this time under Mark McGhee; 2/10/04 H 1-1 - stayed sharp and sliced 'em open. 15/1/05 A 1-2 - blunted their edge at death. B'ton survived 20th, Sheff U 8th 67pt.
05/6 - next term was a different story; 13/9/05 H 0-1 - froze, defrosted, cold comfort. 21/1/06 A 3-1 - made silly mistakes. B'ton 24th rel, Sheff U 2nd promoted to Prem.
C21 Champ's record; P6 . W0 D1 L2 . F3 A6 . W1 D0 L2 . F4 A6 . Pt4 GD-5

Championship record from '99/00 to 18/19; 16, 10, 13, 3, 8, 8, 2, (18 @ Prem), 9, 3, 8, 23, (3, 5, 7, 5, 11, 1 @ L1), 10, 2.
Prem, relegated - 1 time (from 1yr) '07. Ave = 18th. Champ's: promo - '06, '19, p-os - '03, '09.
SHEFFIELD UNITED were one of the original 22 clubs to play in the new Premier League of 1992.
PAST Managers; Neil Warnock (1999-2007), Bryan Robson (2007-8), Kevin Blackwell (2008-10), Gary Speed (2010), Micky Adams (2010-11), Danny Wilson (2011-13), Chris Morgan (2013), David Weir (2014), Nigel Clough (2014-15), Nigel Adkins (2015-16), Chris Wilder (2016)

Info - in '06/7 United dropped back into tier two. Some would say they had hard luck but cold stats record their goal difference was inferior, by only one - compared to the 17th placed club. In '07/8 they missed Champ's p-os at the death, as any number of usual suspects were chasing fifth and sixth spots. For '08/9 they lost a p-o final. But they had hope to elevate again, especially in a city where the blue side of life also wanted to rear its ugly head. However in '9/10, Blades missed play-offs again, by several points. Micky Adams was manager in '10/11 but they went down to L1 from 23rd place. For '11/12 United trailed Wednesday to an auto-promo spot. Things came good in 16/17 when ending as champions of L1 - then reaching 10th at lev2 of 17/18. At end of 18/19 Blades were promoted as runners up in the Championship.

SAINTS PREM record from 11/12 to 18/19; (2 @ Champ's), 14, 8, 7, 6, 8, 17, 16. * * * Ave = 11th (7yrs), Top ten - 4 times.
STATUS; Saints re-established in the Prem this century, after rising quickly from League One in 2011. Second-Season Syndrome: 12/13 - 14th then 13/14 - 8th.
MANAGER; Ralph Hasenhuttl (2018-19), previously Mark Hughes (2018), Mauricio Pellegrino (2017-18)
18/19 - P38 W9 D12 L17 F45 A65 GD-20 Pt39 Po16. Wins = 23.6%, Draws = 31.5%, Loss = 44.7% - R Hasenhuttl & M Hughes
Hughes maintained the club's PL status when drafted in to halt their fall toward level two in a turgid Prem campaign.
17/18 - P38 W7 D15 L16 F37 A56 GD-19 Pt36 Po17. Wins = 18.4%, Draws = 39.4%, Loss = 42.1% - Hughes & Pellegrino.
MH SAINTS RECORD; to Aug 18 - P10 W3 D2 L5 Wins = 30%
16/17 - P38 W12 D10 L16 F41 A48 GD-7 Pt46 Po8, Wins = 31.5%, Draws = 26.3, Loss = 42.1% - Claude Puel.
Saints are not renowned for long-serving managers and it was the turn of Frenchman Claude Puel for a single season.
EUROPA LEAGUE; 15/16 - play-offs, 16/17 - group stage.

FALMER years; 11/12 @ Champ's, 17/18 18/19 @ Prem. EFL Cup - see History&Travel previous encounters.
18/19 - under Chris Hughton, away in Sept we drew 2-2. At home in March we lost 0-1. BHA = 17th 36pt, Soton 16th 39pt
17/18 - at home in Oct we drew 1-1. Away in Jan we drew 1-1. BHA 15th 40pt, So'ton 17th 36pt
PREM; P4 . W0 D1 L1 . F1 A2 . W0 D2 L0 . F3 A3 . Pt3 GD-1

11/12 - under Gus Poyet, at theirs we lost 3-0 in Nov. But won 3-0 at the Amex for New Year. BHA, 10th 66pt. So'ton, 2nd 88pt - promoted.
CHAMP'S; P2 . W1 D0 L0 F3 A0 . W0 D0 L1 F0 A3 . Pt3 GD0

WITHDEAN era; '05/6 @ Champ's, '09/10, '10/11 @ L1
Championship & League One - in for a big Test again.
Saints they were but not exactly heavenly, while Albion had the devil of a job to elevate on entering the Withdean era. But then it happened three times in four seasons, as the Dell was docked. We'd stayed up, they'd come down to the Championship and Mark McGhee was charged with making us a pukka south-coast outfit.
'05/6 - we went to visit St Mary's at New Year; 2/1/06 A 2-1. The return at W'dean was our ground's highest gate at 8k; 8/4/06 H 0-2. B'ton finished 24th with 38pts and were duly relegated to League1. Southampton only ended up 12th in mid table on 58pt.
'9/10 - in L1, it was all change with Gus Poyet's very first match - at theirs we won 1-3 in Nov on a nice Sunday. On a Thurs nite for April fools, we drew 2-2 at ours. BHA finished 13th 59pts, So'ton got to 7th 73pts missing a p-o place by 7pts.
'10/11 - at St Mary's in November again, it was 0-0. At W'dean we lost 1-2 in April but were champions. Saints became runners-up.
C21 total EFL record: P8 . W1 D1 L2 . F6 A6 . W1 D1 L2 . F4 A6. Pt8 GD-2

SO'TON PREM record from '99/00 to 18/19; 15, 10, 11, 8, 12, 20, (12, 6, 20, 23 @ Champ's), (7, 2 @ L1), (2 @ Champ's), 14, 8, 7, 6, 8, 17, 16.
PREM: Best = 6th (15/16), Worst = 20th (04/5), Ave = 13th (13yrs).
Top six - once, Top ten - 5 times from 13yrs, Stayed up - 3 times in bottom six '00, '18, '19, Relegated - '05. Champ's: promo - '12, rel - '09. L1: promo - '11
PL HONOURS; believe it or not Southampton were one of the 22 inaugural members of the new Premier League in 1992.
PAST Managers; Dave Jones (1997-2000), Glenn Hoddle (2000-1), Stuart Gray (2001), Gordon Strachan (2001-4), Paul Sturrock (2004), Steve Wigley (2004), Harry Redknapp (2004-5), George Burley (2005-8), Nigel Pearson (2008), Jan Poortvliet (2008-9), Mark Wotte (2009), Alan Pardew (2009-10), Nigel Adkins (2010-13), Mauricio Pochettino (2013-14), Ronald Koeman (2014-16), Claude Puel (2016-17), Mauricio Pellegrino (2017-18), Mark Hughes (2018)
FA CUP; finalists '03. LEAGUE CUP; finalists '17. LEAGUE TROPHY; winners '10. C21 EUROPE; EL finals - nq.

Withdean era info - talk about big-boys toys, the old chairman makes a comeback with the bloke who was his rival, before others ousted 'em in the first place. In '06/7 they were 6th in the Championship and got done by Derby in p-os on penalties. In '07/8 they were in a relegation spot going into final fixtures, against bottom club Colchester. As Dame Vera sang, 'we'll meet again, don't know when... some sunny day.' But hey, it all went tits up for '08/9 with relegation and then administration, plus a 10pt deduction in League1. In '9/10 they remained there due to that negative start.
Falmer - post the single season in the Championship of 11/12, Soton regained a place in the Prem.

SPURS PREM record from 11/12 to 18/19; 4, 5, 6, 5, 3, 2, 3, 4. * * * Runners-Up - '17, Top Four - 4 times, Ave = 4th (8yrs)
STATUS; Spurs have improved this century from being a useful top 10 side to actually challenge for the title in recent seasons.
MANAGER; Mauricio Pochettino (2014-19)
18/19 - P38 W23 D2 L13 F67 A39 GD+28 Pt71 Po4. Wins = 60.5%, Draws = 5.2%, Loss = 34.2% - M Pochettino.
17/18 - P38 W23 D8 L7 F74 A36 GD38 Pt77 Po3. Wins = 60.5%, Draws = 21%, Loss = 18.4% - M Pochettino.
16/17 - P38 W26 D8 L4 F86 A26 GD+60 Pt86 Po2, Wins = 68.4%, Draws = 21%, Loss = 10.5% - M Pochettino.
Mauricio Pochettino left So'ton with a good reputation and inherited a side not quite capable of finishing in the top three. Thus his skill as a top coach was further tested.
MP SPURS RECORD; to Aug 2018 - P218 W121 D50 L47 Wins = 55.5%
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE; 16/17 - group stage, 17/18 - last 16 (top of group), 18/19 - finalists.
EUROPA LEAGUE; 11/12 - group stage, 12/13 - q-f, 13/14 - last 16, 14/15 - last 32, 15/16 - last 16, 16/17 - last 32.

FALMER years - 17/18, 18/19 @ Prem. League Cup - go to History & Travel, previous encounters.
18/19 - under Chris Hughton, at home in Sept we lost 1-2. Away in April we lost 1-0. BHA = 17th 36pt, Spurs = 4th 71pt - Champions League.
17/18 - away (Wembley) in Dec we lost 2-0. At home in Apr we drew 1-1. BHA 15th 40pt, TH 3rd 77pt
PREM; P4 . W0 D1 L1 . F2 A3 . W0 D0 L2 . F0 A3 . Pt1 GD-4

Withdean era - no league meetings.
HOTSPUR PREM record from '99/00 to 18/19; 10, 12, 9, 10, 14, 9, 5, 5, 11, 8, 4, 5, 4, 5, 6, 5, 3, 2, 3, 4.
Best = 2nd '17, Worst = 14th '04, Ave = 7th (20yrs). Top four - 5 times '10, '12, '16, '18, '19, Top six - 6 times, Top ten - 5 times from 20yrs.
PL HONOURS; Tottenham Hotspur are one of the original Premier League clubs from 1992 but had never won the title in all those 25 years to 2018.
PAST Managers; George Graham (1998-2001), Glenn Hoddle (2001-3), David Pleat (2003-4), Jacques Santini (2004), Martin Jol (2004-7), Juande Ramos (2007-8), Harry Redknapp (2008-12), Andre Villas-Boas (2012-14), Tim Sherwood (2014),
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE; finalists 19, finals - '11 q-f. EUROPA LEAGUE; finals - '07 q-f, '13 q-f.
FA CUP; finalists - not in the Prem era, from 1992, s-f '93, '95, '99, '01, '10, '12, '17. LEAGUE CUP; winners '99 & '08. finalists '02, '09, '15.

C21 Withdean era - FA Cup tie 2005... a nice afternoon up the lane.
What a difference a big FAC round3 tie makes. A day out in London, even post Xmas & New Year is still to be savoured and Brighton fans had gone to White Hart Lane in early Jan '05 by the odd five and a half thousand. Spurs supporters too hot footed to Tottenham and 36000 turned up, which at 30 to 50 quid a seat is an awful lot of dosh. Albion took on Prem giants following some half decent results for '04/5, keeping us safely above the Championship drop zone. Almost in reaction to dismal home surroundings, Brighton love playing in big stadia and often produce a relative rise in standard.
Spurs allowed Seagulls time and space to soar and so we saw a very useful performance, in a cut and thrust cup atmosphere. With eight minutes left it showed one apiece on the board and a replay was definitely on. Then a piece of brilliance from one of several Internationals in white and navy blue, gave those metropolitan big boys a path to progress. BHA got beat but felt far from down and out. There was real hope for a positive gathering of momentum, to push ahead and try to establish in FL's second tier. It didn't happen during the Withdean era but we deserved to get there via Falmer's promised land anyhow.

WATFORD Back to Top
HORNETS PREM record from 11/12 to 18/19; (11, 3, 13, 2 @ Champ's), 13, 17, 14, 11. * * * Ave = 14th (4yrs)
STATUS; having broken back into the Prem after a couple of single-season visits this century, Watford appear a middle-order side there.
Second-Season Syndrome: 15/16 - 13th then 16/17 - 17th.
MANAGER; Javi Gracia (2018-19), previously - Marco Silva (2017-18)
18/19 - P38 W14 D8 L16 F52 A59 GD-7 Pt50 Po11. Wins = 36.8%, Draws = 21%, Loss = 42.1% - Javi Gracia
Gracia arrived very late in the term, when Silva was in the frame for the Everton appointment next season.
17/18 - P38 W11 D8 L19 F44 A64 GD-20 Pt41 Po14. Wins = 28.9%, Draws = 21%, Loss = 50% - Gracia & Silva.
JG HORNETS RECORD; to Aug 18 - P15 W4 D3 L8 Wins = 26.6%
16/17 - P38 W11 D7 L20 F40 A68 GD-28 Pt40, Wins = 28.9%, Draws = 18.4%, Loss = 52.6% - Walter Mazzarri.
The outer London outfit had a double figure number of managerial appointments in the last 6 years. It was the turn of Italian Walter Mazzarri for a single season.

FALMER years; 11/12, 12/13, 13/14, 14/15 @ Champ's, 17/18, 18/19 @ Prem
18/19 - under Chris Hughton. away in Aug we lost 2-0. At home in Feb we drew 0-0. BHA = 17th 36pt, Wat 11th 50pt
17/18 - away in Aug we drew 0-0. At home in Dec won 1-0. BHA 15th 40pt, Wfd 14th 41pt
PREM; P4 . W1 D1 L0 . F1 A0 . W0 D1 L1 . F0 A2 . Pt5 GD-1

11/12 - under Gus Poyet, at theirs in Nov we lost 1-0. At the Amex in April we drew 2-2. BHA, 10th 66pt. Watford, 11th 64pt.
12/13 - at Vicarage Road in Sept we won 0-1. At ours in Dec we lost 1-3. BHA 4th 75pt p-os. Hornets 3rd 77pt. Watford lost in the p-o final.
13/14 - under Oscar Garcia, in October at the Amex we drew 1-1. Then lost 2-0 at Vic Rd in Feb. BHA 6th 72pt p-os, Hornets 13th 60pt.
14/15 - under Sami Hyypia, we drew in Hertfordshire 1-1 during Sept. With Chris Hughton we lost 0-2 at Falmer in April. BHA 20th 47pt, W 2nd 89pt - promoted.
CHAMP'S; P8 . W0 D2 L2 F4 A8 . W1 D1 L2 F2 A4 . Pt6 GD-6

WITHDEAN era; '02/3, '04/5, '05/6 @ Champ's
Championship - just how do they do it with no dosh?
Hornets got buzzed up from div2 (L2), went straight thru div1 (C) and had a season in the Prem when Albion got back home for start of the Withdean era.
'02/3 - Martin Hinshelwood was sacked, 5/10/02 A 1-0. Steve Coppell tried to save us, 26/4/03 H 4-0. B'ton 23rd rel, W'ford 13th 60pt.
'04/5 - Mark McGhee was gaffer; 11/9/04 A 1-1 - nearly gave 'em what for. 3/1/05 H 2-1 - definitely gave 'em... B'ton hung on in 20th 51pt, W'ford 18th 52pt.
'05/6 - 3/12/05 A 1-1 - didn't fold up the Vicarage. 18/2/06 H 0-1 - up and under did us. B'ton 24th rel, W'ford 3rd p-os.
C21 total CHAMP'S: P14 . W2 D2 L3 . F10 A10 . W1 D3 L3 . F4 A7 . Pt14 GD-3

WATFORD Championship record from '99/00 to 18/19; (20 @ Prem), 9, 14, 13, 16, 18, 3, (20 @ Prem), 6, 13, 16, 14, 11, 3, 13, 2, (13, 17, 14, 11 @ Prem).
PREM: Best = 13th (15/16), Worst = 20th (99/00 & 06/7), Ave = 18th (6yrs). Stayed up - 1 time in bottom six (16/17), Relegated - 2 times ('00 & '07).
Champ's: promo - 06 & 15, p-os - 08 & 13.
PAST Managers; Graham Taylor (1997-2001), Gianluca Vialli (2001-2), Ray Lewington (2002-5), Ady Boothroyd (2005-8), Brendan Rodgers (2008-9), Malky Mackay (2009-11), Sean Dyche (2011-12), Gianfranco Zola (2012-13), Giuseppe Sannino (2013-14), Oscar Garcia (2014), Slavisa Jokanovic (2014-15), Quique Sanchez Flores (2015-16), Walter Mazzarri (2016-17), Marco Silva (2017-18)
FA CUP; s-f '07, '16, final 19. LEAGUE CUP, EUROPE; not qualified for finals in the Prem era.

C21 info - Watford went up to the elite for '06/7 but were odds on to fail to stay there. They gave an ongoing points impression of the Watford Gap, although this is actually in Northamptonshire and also very far from those Prem venues. Back in the Championship of '07/8, the Hertfordshire outfit were inside play-offs as well as the M25. But there again, so were Palace and they lost semi's too. By '08/9 & '9/10 they were pretty much obscure in lower mid-table. For '10/11 Hornets got to 14th at level two. After an upturn in fortunes they made the elite in 14/15, reaching mid-table in the Prem of 15/16.

WEST HAM Back to Top
HAMMERS PREM record from 11/12 to 18/19; (3 @ Champ's), 10, 13, 12, 7, 11, 13, 10. * * * Ave = 11th (7yrs), Top ten - 3 times.
STATUS; Hammers have been elite league regulars this century apart from a couple of seasons at most in level 2.
Second-Season Syndrome: 12/13 - 10th then 13/14 - 13th.
MANAGER; Manuel Pellergrini (2018-19), previously David Moyes (2017-18), Slaven Bilic (2015-17)
18/19 - P38 W15 D7 L16 F52 A55 GD-3 Pt52 Po10. Wins = 39.4%, Draws = 18.4%, Loss = 42.1% - Manuel Pelligrini
Moyes took over from Bilic as the Iron were bending out of shape, with cracks appearing throughout a fraught term.
17/18 - P38 W10 D12 L16 F48 A68 GD-20 Pt42 Po13. Wins = 26.3%, Draws = 31.5%, Loss = 42.1% - Moyes & Bilic.
16/17 - P38 W12 D9 L17 F47 A64 GD-17 Pt45 Po11, Wins = 31.5% - Slaven Bilic.
Bilic followed Sam Allardyce at old Upton Park then made the London Stadium at Stratford new home of Irons. His aim was to make it a modern fortress - oh dear!
SB HAMMERS RECORD; to Aug 2017 - P97 W37 D27 L33 Wins = 38.1% EUROPA LEAGUE; 15/16 - 3rd q rnd, 16/17 - play-offs.

FALMER years; 11/12 @ Champ's, 17/18, 18/19 @ Prem
18/19 - under Chris Hughton, at home in Oct we won 1-0. Away in Jan we drew 2-2. BHA = 17th 36pt, WHU = 10th 52pt
17/18 - away in Oct we won 0-3. At home in Feb we won 3-1. BHA 15th 40pt, WHU 13th 42pt
PREM; P4 . W2 D0 L0 . F4 A1 . W1 D1 L0 . F5 A2 . Pt10 GD+6

11/12 - under Gus Poyet, at the Amex in Oct L 0-1. At the Boleyn Ground drubbed 6-0 in April. BHA, 10th 66pt. WHU, 3rd 86pt - won p-o final.
CHAMP'S; P2 . W0 D0 L1 F0 A1 . W0 D0 L1 F0 A6 Pt0 GD-7

WITHDEAN era; '04/5 @ Champ's
Championship - right up the 'ammers.
'04/5 - Mark McGhee had got BHA back into the Championship and had the job to keep 'em there against all odds. At Upton Park - 13/11/04 A 0-1 - cue 5k BHA hysteria. In the W'dean run-in re-match - 23/4/05 H 2-2 - cue more excitement. B'ton held on to 20th and survived with 51pts on the last day - cue excess of emotion. West Ham United got a p-o slot and went on to win the k-o stages and promo to the elite.
C21 total CHAMP'S: P4 . W0 D1 L1 . F2 A3 . W1 D0 L1 F1 A6 . Pt4 GD-6

WHU PREM record from '99/00 to 18/19; 9, 15, 7, 18, (4, 6 @ Champ's), 9, 15, 10, 9, 17, 20, (3 @ Champ's), 10, 13, 12, 7, 11, 13, 10.
PREM Best = 7th (01/2, 15/16), Worst = 20th (10/11), Ave = 12th (17yrs). Top ten - 8 times from 17yrs, Stayed up - 3 times in bottom six '01, '07, '10, Relegated - 2 times '03 & '11. Champ's: promo - '05 & '12, p-os - '04.
PAST Managers; Harry Redknapp (1994-2001), Glenn Roeder (2001-3), Alan Pardew (2003-6), Alan Curbishley (2006-8), Gianfranco Zola (2008-10), Avram Grant (2010-11), Sam Allardyce (2011-15), Slaven Bilic (2015-17), David Moyes (2017-18),
EUROPA LEAGUE; finals - not qualify. FA CUP; finalists '06. LEAGUE CUP; finalists - not in the Prem era.

C21 background info - two years before going there for FAC3 in Jan '07 Brighton fans went to Tottenham in their thousands to support our team in a round3 tie at Premiership White Hart Lane. Supply of tickets was exceeded by demand and many devotees happily found a post-Xmas thirty-five quid for seats in a supplementary second section, with super side views.
This time for New Year in an equivalent Cup game at West Ham, a priority was given to holders of Millwall JPT QF stubs and then Uncle Tom Cobblers to all. When Brighton visited Hammers in the Championship that season of '04/5, restricted tickets sold out early and the Upton Park outfit refused any extras. An availability argument raged, with opinions from all factions of support being free to air. Yet more ructions during this first week of January 2007 and it was very interesting to see how things panned out for future. Money cannot buy everything, can it?
Alan Curbishley became manager at West Ham, having replaced Alan Pardew when those blowing bubbles burst down at Boleyn Ground and Green Street was covered at length in tabloid brown stuff. Hammers had previously failed to somehow close out the FA Cup final in May '06, when a right old east-end knees up in Cardiff turned into a sickening second Wembley nightmare scene. It was going from bad to worse, whilst a new sugar daddy entered the Boardroom promising a sweet smell of success. Alf Garnet would have turned in his municipal grave, as even a hardened cynic might just believe, oi yeah, actually, money can buy everything.
For '08/9 they were top-ten anyway. But it kinda went tits up in '9/10 when new owners took over. Franco Zola was then in the hot seat. Hammers just beat the drop but the little Italian maestro didn't. For '10/11 with Avram Grant in charge, Hammers were relegated to the Championship. Some people wanted to blame David Gold and Karen Brady for east-end trouble and strife. What do you think? Answers on a postcard to - revamped Olympic Stadium, London 2012. But in 2016 they were playing there as a Prem outfit.

WOLVES Back to Top
WOLVES PREM record from 11/12 to 18/19; 20, (23 @ Champ's), (1 @ L1), (7, 14, 15, 1 @ C), 7. * * * Top ten - 1 time '19, relegated - 1 time '12.
STATUS; Wanderers have flirted with the Prem a few times this century but were unable to consolidate there. Second Season Syndrome; 09/10 - 15th, 10/11 - 17th.
MANAGER; Nuno Espirito Santo (2017-19)
18/19 - P38 W16 D9 L13 F47 A46 GD+1 Pt57 Po7 Wins = 42.1%, Draws = 23.6%, Loss = 34.2%
Santo did what several managers hadn't been able to do since Mick McCarthy got the old gold elbow in the Prem of 2012.
NES WOLVES RECORD; to Aug '18 - P52 W33 D11 L8 Wins = 63.4%

FALMER Years; 12/13, 14/15, 15/16, 16/17 @ Champ's. 18/19 @ Prem.
18/19 - under Chris Hughton, at home in Oct we won 1-0. Away in April we drew 0-0. BHA = 17th 36pt, WW 7th 57pt
Prem: P2 . W1 D0 L0 . F1 A0 . W0 D1 L0 . F0 A0 . Pt4 GD+1

12/13 - under Gus Poyet; at Molineux in November we drew 3-3. At the Amex in May we won 2-0. BHA 4th 75pt p-os. WW 23rd 51pt - relegated to L1.
14/15 - under Sami Hyypia; in Dec @ Molineux we drew 1-1. With Chris Hughton in March @ the Amex we also drew 1-1. Albion 20th 47pt, Wolves 7th 78pt.
15/16 - at theirs in Sept we drew 0-0. At ours for New Year we lost 0-1. Albion 3rd 89pt p-os, Wolves 14th 58pt.
16/17 - at home in Oct we won 1-0. Away in Apr we won 0-2. BHA 2nd 93pt promoted, WW 15th 58pt
Champ's record: P8 . W2 D1 L1 . F4 A2 . W1 D3 L0 . F6 A4 . Pt13 GD+4

WITHDEAN era; '02/3, '04/5, '05/6 @ Champ's
Championship - living on past glories.
There was div1 (Champ's) fare at Molineux while Albion struggled in div3 (League Two), before escaping during the Withdean era.
02/3 - Steve Coppell was on board, 11/11/02 A 1-1. 8/2/03 H 4-1. B'ton 23rd rel, Wanderers 5th 76pt won p-os.
04/5 - Mark McGhee was boss, 14/9/04 H 0-1 - worrying wobble. 28/12/04 A 1-1 - wot a jolly, gobby Moly. B'ton made 20th, WW 9th 66pt.
05/6 - it was a different matter; 1/11/05 H 1-1 - nearly blew our house down. 22/4/06 A 1-0 - no luck in their lair. B'ton 24th rel, Wolves 7th 67pt miles off p-os.
C21 total Champ's record: P14 . W3 D2 L2 . F9 A4 . W1 D5 L1 . F8 A7 . Pt19 GD+6

Championship records from '99/00 to 18/19; 7, 12, 3, 5, (20 @ Prem), 9, 7, 5, 7, 1, (15, 17, 20 @ Prem) 23, (1 @ L1), 7, 14, 15, 1, (7 @ Prem)
PREM; top ten - 1 time 18/19, stayed up - 2 times in bottom six (5 yrs) 10 & 11, relegated - 2 times 04 & 12. Champ's: promo - 03, 09, 18, p-os - 02 & 07, rel - 13.
PAST Managers; Colin Lee (1998-2000), Dave Jones (2001-4), Glenn Hoddle (2004-6), Mick McCarthy (2006-12), Terry Connor (2012), Stale Solbakken (2012), Dean Saunders (2013), Kenny Jackett (2013-16), Walter Zenga (2016), Paul Lambert (2016-17), Nuno Espirito Santo (2017-18)

Info - B'fans of a certain age think of Wanderers as a very big club. They were Premiership members briefly in '03/4 to perpetuate the dream. Once upon a time, BHA aspired to elite staus as well, while Wolves only found themselves at the door of bread and butter clubs in lower leagues. Then a 21st century Molineux became an impressive sight and while the world turned, WW rose again as Albion slumped. In '06/7 they were in Champ's p-os, versus West Brom - oh dear! In '07/8 they were almost in p-os, losing a k-o place in the final league match. An old gold & black day then! Hey, they done good in '08/9 and won the Championship. In '9/10 they only stayed in the Prem and all. For '10/11, Wolves stayed up on the final day as others fell at the last hurdle. But in '11/12 Wolves were relegated from the Prem. And they fell straight thru Champ's... but immediately bounced back from L1 in '13/14. Wanderers were eventually promoted back to the PL once more as champions in 17/18.

 Back to Top


BARNSLEY Back to Top
League ONE record from 11/12 to 18/19; (21, 21, 23 @ C), 11, 6 @ L1, (14, 22 @ C), 2 @ L1. * * * Promoted - twice '16 & '19 L1. Champ's: rel - '14 & '18
STATUS; a club that alternates in cycles between tiers 2 & 3 but is more comfortable in lower league.
MANAGER; Daniel Stendel (2018), previously Joe Morais (2018), Paul Heckingbottom (2016-18)

FALMER years; 11/12, 12/13, 13/14, 16/17 @ Champ's
11/12 - under Gus Poyet; at Falmer in Nov we won 2-0. Last day of season in April we drew nil-nil at Oakwell. BHA, 10th 66pt. Barnsley 21st 48pt.
12/13 - at ours in Aug we won 5-1. At theirs we lost 2-1 in March. BHA 4th 75pt. Tykes 21st 55pt.
13/14 - under Oscar Garcia; we lost at the Amex 1-2 in Dec. At Oakwell we drew 0-0 in April. BHA 6th 72pt, Barnsley 23rd 39pt - relegated.
16/17 - with Chris Hughton: home in Sept, won 2-0. Away Feb we won 2-0. BHA 2nd 93pt, Barnsley 14th 58pt
Champ's: P8 . W3 D0 L1 . F10 A3 . W1 D2 L1 . F3 A2 . Pt14 GD+8

WITHDEAN era; '03/4 @ L1
League One - watch out, there's Tykes about!
Barnsley had been a regular div1 (C) outfit, as BHA laboured in lower leagues of late 20th century years. But the footy world turns and while we had ups, they had downs.
03/4 - during the Withdean era, Steve Coppell was still manager in div2 (League1) when we went up north to their Oakwell Stadium. Late in August 2003 Albion lost one-nil - blatantly beat in Yorks. Back at ours under Mark McGhee in January 2004, the same score was reversed - so better to bag one in Sussex. Brighton went up to the Championship (div1) via a further visit - to Cardiff. Speaking plainly, Barnsley merely finished mid table 12th on 62 pts. Oh 'eck!
C21 total EFL record: P10 . W4 D0 L1 . F11 A3 . W1 D2 L2 . F3 A3 . Pt17 GD+8

FL Championship record from '99/00 to 18/19; 4, 16, 23, (19, 12, 13, 5, @ L1), 20, 18, 20, 18, 17, 21, 21, 23, (11, 6 @ L1), 14, 22, (2 @ L1)
Champ's: Best = 4th '00, Worst = 23rd '02 & '14. Stayed up - 4 times '07, '09, '12, '13, Relegated - 3 times '02, '14 & '18. L1: promo - '06, '16, '19.
PAST Managers; Dave Bassett (1999-2000), Nigel Spackman (2001), Steve Parkin (2001-2), Glyn Hodges (2002-3), Gudjon Thordarson (2003-4), Paul Hart (2004-5), Andy Ritchie (2005-6), Simon Davey (2007-10), Mark Robins (2009-11), Keith Hill (2011-12), David Flitcroft (2012-13), Danny Wilson (2013-15), Lee Johnson (2015-16), Paul Heckingbottom (2016-18), Joe Morais (2018)
EFL Trophy; winner - 15/16

Info - incredibly, Barnsley were in the Premiership of '97/98 for a season, when Brighton played home games at Gillingham. Tykes fell right thru to div2 (L1) while Albion went the opposite way for '02/3 in div1 (Champ's). They had gone into administration at Grove Street and seemed destined to struggle. But in '05/6 the Oakwell outfit won their League1 play-off final to make a bid for establishing back in the Championship. Meanwhile BHA relegation meant Withdean would once more host League1 opposition until moving to Falmer. In '08/9 and '9/10, Tykes were still at tier two and beat threat of the drop - dirty northern miners. For '10/11 they finished 17th in the Champ's. After dropping into L1 for two terms, they won the p-o final in '15/16. But next went back down to lev3 at end of 17/18, only for Tykes to rise again in 18/19.

CHAMPionship record from 11/12 to 18/19; 4, 12, 21, 10, 10, 19, 19, 17. * * * * Stayed up - 3 times '14, '17 & '18.
STATUS; a lower order second level outfit who need investment to regain Prem membership again one day.
MANAGER; Pep Clotet (2019), previously Garry Monk (2018-19), Steve Cotterill (2017-18)

FALMER Years; 11/12, 12/13, 13/14, 14/15, 15/16, 16/17 @ Championship
11/12 - under Gus Poyet; we drew 0-0 at St Andrews in Oct. We also drew 1-1 at the Amex in April. BHA, 10th 66pt. BC, 4th 76pt.
12/13 - at ours in Sept we lost 1-0. At theirs in Jan we drew 2-2. BHA 4th 75pt. BC 12th 61pt.
13/14 - under Oscar Garcia; the initial fixture was in the midlands during mid Aug and we won 1-0. Down south in Jan we also won 1-0. BHA 6th 72pt, BC 21st 44pt.
14/15 - with Sami Hyypia in charge; we lost away 1-0 in August. Under Chris Hughton we won 4-3 at home in Feb. Albion 20th 47pt, Blues 10th 63pt
15/16 - at home in Nov we won 2-1. And away in Apr we won 2-1. Albion 3rd 89pt, Blues 10th 63pt.
16/17 - at theirs in Dec we won 2-1. At ours in Apr we won 3-1. BHA 2nd 93pt promoted, BC 19th 53pt
Champ's; P12 . W4 D1 L1 F11 A7 . W3 D2 L1 F7 A5 . Pt24 GD+6

Withdean era - no meetings.
PREM record from '99/00 to 18/19; (5, 5, 5 @ Champ's), 13, 10, 12, 18, (2 @ C), 19, (2 @ C), 9, 18, (4, 12, 21, 10, 10, 19, 19, 17 @ C)
Prem: best = 9th '10, worst = 19th '08, top ten - twice '04 & '10, relegated - 3 times '06, '08, '11. Champ's: promo - '02, '07, '09
PAST Managers; Trevor Francis (1996-2001), Steve Bruce (2001-7), Alex McLeish (2007-11), Chris Hughton (2011-12), Lee Clark (2012-14), Gary Rowett (2014-16), Gianfranco Zola (2016-17), Harry Redknapp (2017), Steve Cotterill (2017-18), Garry Monk (2018-19)
LEAGUE CUP; winners - 10/11, finalists - 00/01

C21 info - City were mostly a Premiership outfit during the noughties but spent three seasons back then in equivalent of the Championship (C) - '08/9, '06/7 and '01/2. In years from 11/12 they became a lower order placed side by 17/18. In 18/19 Blues suffered a 9pt deduction for breaking rules & regs..

CHAMP record from 11/12 to 18/19; (19 @ Prem), 17, 8, 9, 15, 22, (2 @ League One), 15. * * * Relegated - '12 P & '17 C, Promoted - '18 L1.
STATUS; an ex-Prem outfit since as recently as 2012, Rovers seek to regain their true level sooner than later.
MANAGER; Tony Mowbray (2017)

FALMER Years; 12/13, 13/14, 14/15, 15/16, 16/17 @ Championship
12/13 - under Gus Poyet; at Ewood Park in Jan we drew 1-1. At the Amex we also drew 1-1 in Feb. BHA 4th 75pt p-os. BR 17th 58pt.
13/14 - under Oscar Garcia; at ours we won 3-0 in Nov. In Apr we drew 3-3 at theirs. BHA 6th 72pt p-os, BR 8th 70pt.
14/15 - under Sami Hyypia; we drew 1-1 at home in Nov. With Chris Hughton we won 0-1 up north in March. Albion 20th 47pt, Rovers 9th 67pt.
15/16 - at home in Aug we won 1-0. Away in Jan we won 0-1. Albion 3rd 89pt p-os, Rovers 15th 55pt.
16/17 - at theirs in Dec we won 2-3. At ours in Apr we won 1-0. BHA 2nd 93pt promoted, BR 22nd 51pt relegated
Champ's; P10 . W3 D2 L0 F7 A2 . W3 D2 L0 F9 A6 . Pt22 GD+8

Withdean era - no meetings
Championship record from '99/00 to 18/19; 11, 2, (10, 6, 15, 15, 6, 10, 7, 15, 10, 15, 19 @ Prem), 17, 8, 9, 15, 22, (2 @ L1), 15
Prem: best = 6th '03, worst = 19th '12, top ten - 6 times '02, '03, '06, '07, '08, '10, stayed up - 4 times '04, '05, '09, '11, relegated - '12.
Champ's: promo - '01, rel - '17. L1: promo - '18
BLACKBURN ROVERS were one of the original 22 inaugural clubs when the Premier League began in 1992. And since are also one of only six teams to win the title in the 25 years until 2017. C20 Prem: title - 94/95
PAST Managers; Brian Kidd (1998-9), Graeme Souness (2000-4), Mark Hughes (2004-8), Paul Ince (2008), Sam Allardyce (2008-10), Steve Kean (2010-12), Henning Berg (2012), Michael Appleton (2013), Gary Bowyer (2013-15), Paul Lambert (2015-16), Owen Coyle (2016-17), Tony Mowbray (2017)
LEAGUE CUP; winners - 01/02

Footnote - Rovers were relegated from the Premiership in '11/12 since spending eleven seasons in the elite. In 16/17 they dropped into League One but regained Champ's status after 17/18. At end of 18/19 Rovers were lev2 midtable.

Championship record from 11/12 to 18/19; (9, 3, 2 @ L1), 5, 9, 10, 9, 11. * * * Champ's: p-os - '15, L1: promo - '14.
STATUS; a lower league club who with backing for a new stadium can hold a steady level two place.
MANAGER; Thomas Frank (2018), previously Dean Smith (2015-18)

FALMER Years; 14/15, 15/16, 16/17 @ Championship. FA Cup - see Falmer Years, previous encounters.
14/15 - under Sami Hyypia; we lost 3-2 in Sept at Griffin Park. With Chris Hughton we lost 0-1 at the Amex in Jan. Albion 20th 47pt, Bees 5th 78pt.
15/16 - we drew 0-0 at theirs in Dec and won 3-0 at ours in Feb. Albion 3rd 89pt, Bees 9th 65pt.
16/17 - at home in Sept we lost 0-2. Away in Feb we drew 3-3. BHA 2nd 93pt promoted, BFC 10th 64pt
Champ's record: P6 . W1 D0 L2 . F3 A3 . W0 D2 L1 . F5 A6 . Pt19 GD-1

WITHDEAN era; '01/2, '03/4, '06/7, '09/10, '10/11 @ League One
League One - Bees all of a buzz.
Micky Adams managed at Griffin Park in old div2 but they got relegated, as Brighton also struggled at Gillingham pre-99. We then met Brentford for the first time at north Brighton, in October 2001 when both upped to div2 (league1) level.
01/2 - during a second promotion term for Peter Taylor's Seagulls. It went to Steve Coppell's Brentford 1-2 as B'ton suffered a first and only home defeat that season at our ongoing if 'temporary' fortress. In fact, the last time Micky Adams Albion had been defeated on their own 'turf' was in div3 (L2) versus Southend, on a virtual bog that New Years Day of '01. Ironically, we'd played a switched LDV 'home' tie next, over at Griffin Park because a Withdean quagmire urgently had to be re-laid - Bees won 'away' 4-2 on penalties! In Jan '02 we got done 4-0 up at their place.
Nearly six years after Adams had arrived to move the club forward, Albion were once again spending a single season in div2 (league1) and on a further promotion trail -
03/4 - By coincidence, regular departing B'ton managers seemed to cross over with those incoming (Adams-Taylor, Coppell-McGhee) when we played and lost to Brentford 4-0 again in Oct '03 for biennial embarrasment. However, Albion were aiming for play-offs under Mark McGhee, as those now struggling visitors from off Junction 2 of outer London's M4, came down to call in March '04. Seagulls' swooped for a 1-0 win to keep us on the right road to Wales.
06/7 - In League1 it was a 2-2 draw at W'dean in August '06. Then BHA lost 1-0 during Feb '07 in London. We were eventually 18th but Bees went down to Lg2 at the death. They later won League2 and met us again in L1.
09/10 - where we'd previously survived in Lg1. It was 0-0 at GP in Aug under Russ Slade and we still hadn't won there. At W'dean in Mar under Gus Poyet we won 3-0. BHA finished L1 13th 59pts, while Brentford were a creditable 9th 62pts.
10/11 - our last season at W'dean, we won 1-0 in late Sept. At theirs it was 0-1 to us in Mar from an og. BHA got the title and Bees finished 11th in L1.
C21 total EFL record: P16 . W4 D1 L3 . F11 A7 . W1 D3 L4 . F6 A15 . Pt19 GD-5

EFL L1 record from '99/00 to 18/19; 17, 14, 3, 16, 17, 4, 3, 24, (14, 1 @ L2), 9, 11, 9, 3, 2, (5, 9, 10, 9, 11 @ Champ's)
Champ's: Best = 5th, Worst = 11th. Top half - 4 times from 5yrs, p-os '15. L1: promo - '14, p-os - '02, '05, '06, '13, rel - '07. L2: promo - '09.
PAST Managers; Ron Noades (1998-2000), Ray Lewington (2000-1), Steve Coppell (2001-2), Wally Downes (2002-4), Martin Allen (2004-6), Leroy Rosenior (2006), Scott Fitzgerald (2006-7), Terry Butcher (2007), Andy Scott (2007-11), Nicky Forster (2011), Uwe Rosler (2011-13), Mark Warburton (2013-15), Marinus Dijkhuizen (2015), Lee Carsley (2015), Dean Smith (2015-18)
EFL Trophy; finalists - 00/01, 10/11

Background - being stood on that former draughty, open Ealing Road Terrace didn't 'all together now' bother a minority of stoic seated Withdeanites, who regularly travelled to Brentford to get beat each mid noughties away fixture. At any given time they could easily find something to grumble about - whether on their arses or not. If an intimate atmosphere in the opposite 'Wendy House' is also a forlorn memory, previous extra away allocation was provided in the Braemar Road Stand, right up in a corner. Oh, there were a few pillars - so at least you got a chance to moan in weather-proofed surroundings.
Plenty of seasonal griping had also gone on in 2007 among Albion interested, either vocally, appearing on screens or in print. Additional sackfulls of pro-Falmer picture postcards were forwarded to Ruth Kelly, plus a few local vista 'wish you were here' views of Withdean, by way of an anti-NIMBY, right honourable ear bashing. But by 2011 it was of course, all very different, both on and off field.
In '13/14 Bees finally got promotion to lev2 after years of trying - then immediately reaching Champ's p-os in 14/15. At end of 18/19 they were again midtable but looking forward to playing next in a brand new stadium.

Championship record from 11/12 to 18/19; 20, 24, (12, 1 @ L1), 18, 17, 11, 8. * * * Champ's: stayed up - 11/12, relegated - 12/13, L1: promo - 14/15
STATUS; something of a yoyo club with aspirations for higher placing in the EFL pecking order.
MANAGER; Lee Johnson (2016)

FALMER years; 11/12, 12/13, 15/16, 16/17 @ Championship
11/12 - under Gus Poyet; at Ashton Gate we won 0-1 in Sept. We did better at the Amex 2-0 in Jan. BHA, 10th 66pt. BC, 20th, 49pt.
12/13 - at the Amex in Nov we won 2-0. At AG in Mar we drew 0-0. BHA 4th, BC 24th - relegated
15/16 - under Chris Hughton at home in Oct we won 2-1. Away in Feb we won 0-4. Albion 3rd 89pt, Robins 18th 52pt.
16/17 - at theirs in Nov we won 0-2. At ours in Apr we lost 0-1. BHA 2nd 93pt promoted, BC 17th 54pt
Champ's record: P8 . W3 D0 L1 . F6 A2 . W3 D1 L0 . F7 A0 . Pt19 GD+11

WITHDEAN era; '01/2, '03/4, '06/7 @ League One
League One - getting out of tier three was the hardest bit.
Robins were a useful div2 club that got to div1 for '98/9 as Albion aimed for Withdean. They were back a year later but Seagulls were on a flight path out of div3 by 2001.
01/2 - Peter Taylor was boss when BHA went to Ashton Gate; 3/11/01 A 1-0. At W'dean for run-in; 1/4/02 H 2-1. B'ton won title, Bristol C 7th o/s p-os 73pts.
03/4 - For next div2 (lg1) season Mark McGhee took charge; initially home 15/11/03 H 1-4 - bloody awful. Then later tense run-in away; 24/4/04 A 0-0 - where bloody good. B'ton got 4th total 77pts, Bristol 3rd 82pts - both sides contested p-os. Brighton won the play-off final v Bristol C 1-0.
06/7 - League1 (tier three) renewed saw McGhee; 2/9/06 A 1-0 - start of the end. Then replacement Dean Wilkins tried; 24/2/07 H 0-2 - oh dear! B'ton only 18th, Bristol gained 2nd - auto promo.
C21 total EFL record: P14 . W4 D0 L3 . F9 A9 . W4 D2 L1 . F8 A1 . Pt26 GD+7

Championship record from '99/00 to 18/19; (9, 9, 7, 3, 3, 7, 9, 2 @ L1), 4, 10, 10, 15, 20, 24, (12, 1 @ L1), 18, 17, 11, 8
Champs: Best = 4th, Worst = 24th. p-os - '08, top half - '09, '10, '18, '19, rel - '13. L1: promo - '07 & '15.
PAST Managers; Tony Pulis (1999-2000), Danny Wilson (2000-4), Brian Tinnion (2004-5), Gary Johnson (2005-10), Steve Coppell (2010), Keith Millen (2010-11), Derek McInnes (2012), Sean O'Driscoll (2012-13), Steve Cotterill (2013-16), Lee Johnson (2016)
EFL Trophy; winner - 14/15, finalist - 99/00. EFL Cup; s-f - 17/18

Background - as expected by Brighton fans since our League1 visit to Ashton Gate, (given circumstances had changed), the squad got radically altered. On that summer day of September '06, in an early-season sparring contest, Mark McGhee fell foul of fans and ultimately his Chairman. In a slightly different ball-game, coach Dean Wilkins was also building for a future and generally still had backing; while inheriting, understanding and tackling latent problems. McGhee's fielded team mighta been called experimental, having shown the door to numerous established pros before pre-season. By default, Wilkins adapted those remaining personnel to needs as he saw fit for purpose to progress. If ongoing League1 results were expressed in form of a graph; an undulating upward curve reached a plateau, then needed to be closely monitored ultra carefully, for signs of downward motion. There were post-match measures pinpointing how far Brighton had fallen in relation to a typical top-ten League1 club, who we crucially defeated in regaining Championship status - albeit several years before. In order to progress, Albion might review it like past play-off, or Millennium Stadium style events charged with positive energy. It was taken as a serious opportunity to re-engage a winning mentality pretty damn quick. But in reality, footy life ain't so straightforward.
City done good in the Championship of '07/8 and BHA wanted to get back there asap and all. City completed their '08/9 & '9/10 programmes established in the top half of the Champ's table. Out of work Steve Coppell then took the Ashton Gate seat for '10/11 but left quickly - Robins finished 15th. They subsequently spent 2 seasons in L1, for 13/14 & 14/15. At end of 18/19 Robins finished close to p-os.

CARDIFF Back to Top
Champ's record from 11/12 to 18/19; 6, 1, (20 @ Prem), 11, 8, 12, 2, (18 @ Prem). * * * Prem: Relegated - 2 times '14 & '19. Champ's: promo - '18
STATUS; essentially a lower league & Championship club this century, Bluebirds got to the Prem initially in 13/14 then 18/19.
MANAGER; Neil Warnock (2016-19)
18/19 - P38 W10 D4 L24 F34 A69 GD-35 Pt34 Po18. Wins = 26.3%, Draws = 10.5%, Loss = 63.1%
Warnock showed some ability to steer Bluebirds back to Prem membership in his mere two years there.
NW CITY RECORD; to Aug 18 - P87 W44 D19 L24 Wins = 50.5%

FALMER years; 11/12, 12/13, 14/15, 15/16, 16/17 @ Champ's. 18/19 @ Prem.
18/19 - Prem under Chris Hughton, away in Nov we lost 2-1. At home in April we lost 0-2. BHA = 17th 36pt, CC = 18th 34pt
Prem; P2 . W0 D0 L1 . F0 A2 . W0 D0 L1 . F1 A2 . Pt0 GD-3

11/12 - under Gus Poyet; at their new stad 17/8/11 A 1-3 a great win back in Wales. At our new stad it was 2-2 in March. BHA, 10th 66pt. CC, 6th 75pt. (p-o s-f)
12/13 - at ours in Aug it was 0-0. At theirs in Feb we won 0-2. BHA 4th 75pt p-os. CC 1st 87pt promoted.
14/15 - under Sami Hyypia; we drew 1-1 @ the Amex in Sept. With Chris Hughton we drew 0-0 @ theirs in Feb. Albion 20th 47pt, City 11th 62pt.
15/16 - at home in October we drew 1-1. Away we lost 4-1 in Feb. Albion 3rd 89pt p-os, City 8th 68pt.
16/17 - away in Dec we drew 0-0. At home in Jan we won 1-0. BHA 2nd 93pt promoted, CC 12th 62pt
Champ's record: P10 . W1 D4 L0 . F5 A4 . W2 D2 L1 . F6 A5 . Pt15 GD+2

WITHDEAN era; '00/01 @ L2, '01/2 @ L1, '04/5, '05/6 @ Champ's
League Two thru Championship - their cup runneth over here.
00/1 - 2nd season div3 W'dean with Micky Adams and wanted much more; 9/9/00 A 1-1 at Ninian Park. 10/2/01 H 1-0 for the re-match with equally ambitious Welsh. B'ton became champions, while C'iff got runners-up spot 82pts.
01/2 - The following term in div2, Adams was about to bale out; 29/9/01 A 1-1 in Wales. Peter Taylor took over and ran a tight ship; 31/1/02 H 1-0 down Tongdean Lane. B'ton took b2b titles, C'iff were 4th on 83pts.
04/5 - Both sides were in the Championship when Mark McGhee was in charge. At W'dean 19/10/04 H 1-1 - they're W... 12/2/05 A 2-0 - sheep-shaggers screwed us. B'ton finished in 20th 51pts, C'iff 16th 54pts.
05/6 - was a different story; our turf 15/10/05 H 1-2 - levelled, couldn't hold on. Down their valley 22/11/05 A 1-1 - wonder goal to equalise. B'ton fell to 24th and the drop, C'iff finished mid table 11th 60pt.
C21 total EFL record: P18 . W3 D5 L1 . F8 A6 . W2 D5 L2 . F10 A11 . Pt25 GD+1

Championship record from '99/00 to 18/19; (21 @ L1), (2 @ L2), (4, 6, @ L1), 13, 16, 11, 13, 12, 7, 4, 4, 6, 1, (20 @ Prem), 11, 8, 12, 2, (18 @ Prem).
PREM; relegated - 2 times '14 & 19 (from 2 yrs). Champ's: promo - '13 & '18, p-os - '10, '11, '12. L1: promo - '03, rel - '00. L2: promo - '01
PAST Managers; Frank Burrows (1998-2000), Alan Cork (2000-2), Lennie Lawrence (2002-5), Dave Jones (2005-11), Malky Mackay (2011-14), Ole Solskjaer (2014), Russell Slade (2014-16), Paul Trollope (2016), Neil Warnock (2016-18)
FA CUP; finalists - 09/10. LEAGUE CUP; finalists - 11/12

Background - Bluebirds went up from div3 when Albion were playing home games at Gillingham. They came back down after a season at tier three, just in time to join-in with the Withdean era from Y2k. We had certain things in common, although nationality it ain't. During the nineties both clubs had a history of fellow suffering, separated by regional ambition. We'd had too many years out to grass, under-funded, exploited, mismanaged and relegated. Each core support was promised the earth; development of catchments potential and expectations, dreams, futures, ad infinitum. It took many years before some of these aspirations assumed reality.
As a third tier side again, Brighton were eventually given the nod for Falmer in 2007 to be finished for '11/12. City established in the Championship by 2008 and erstwhile decided to build on an er, athletics track. Seeing was definitely believing. They missed out on p-o form in '08/9 to tread more Taff water in level two again. But hey, in '9/10 City actually reached the p-o final. They got as far as p-o phases again in '10/11 but went out in semi-finals at their new place. Well, worry a sheep!
For '12/13, foreign owners decided to change colour of the shirt and play as Red Dragons, supposedly to enhance support in Malaysia. Yeah, we know they are as well. They were back in lev2 after one season '13/14 in the elite. The Welsh club next regained PL status when finishing as runners up in 17/18 but went straight back down..

CHARLTON Back to Top
League One record from 11/12 to 18/19; 1, (9, 18, 12, 22 @ Champ's), 13, 6, 3. * * * Champ's: rel - '16. L1: promo - '12 & '19, p-os - '18.
STATUS; the metropolitan outfit graced the Prem during first decade this century but also tasted lower league fare more recently.
MANAGER; Lee Bowyer (2018), previously Karl Robinson (2016-18)

FALMER Years; 12/13, 13/14, 14/15, 15/16 @ Championship
12/13 - under Gus Poyet; at the Valley in December we drew 2-2. At the Amex in April we drew 0-0. BHA 4th 75pt p-os. CA 9th 65pt.
13/14 - under Oscar Garcia; we lost at theirs on Boxing Day 3-2. We won at ours 3-0 in April. BHA 6th 72pt p-os, CA 18th 51pt.
14/15 - with Sami Hyypia in charge we drew @ the Amex 2-2 in Aug. With Chris Hughton as boss we won 0-1 at the Valley in Jan. Albion 20th 47pt, Addicks 12th 60pt.
15/16 - at home in Dec we won 3-2. Away in Apr we won 1-3. Albion 3rd 89pt p-os, Addicks 22nd 40pt - relegated.
Champ's record: P8 . W2 D2 L0 F8 A4 . W2 D1 L1 F8 A6 GD+6 Pt15

WITHDEAN era; '09/10, '10/11 @ L1
9/10 - in League One at ours in Dec we lost 0-2 under Gus Poyet. At theirs in Feb we won 1-2. Albion finished 13th 59pts, while Athletic were 4th 84pts p-o phases.
10/11 - BHA went first to the Valley in Oct and won 0-4. At W'dean for end of Dec we drew 1-1. Albion won the L1 div title, while Athletic were back in 13th.
C21 total EFL record: P12 . W2 D3 L1 F9 A7 . W4 D1 L1 F14 A7 GD+9 Pt22

Championship record from '99/00 to 18/19; 1, (9, 14, 12, 7, 11, 13, 19 @ Prem), 11, 24, (4, 13, 1 @ L1), 9, 18, 12, 22, (13, 6, 3 @ L1)
Prem: best = 7th '04, worst = 19th '07, top ten - twice '01 & '04, relegated - '07. Champ's: promo - '00, rel - '09 & '16. L1: promo - '12 & '19
PAST Managers; Alan Curbishley (1995-2006), Iain Dowie (2006), Les Reed (2006), Alan Pardew (2006-8), Phil Parkinson (2008-10), Chris Powell (2010-2014), Jose Riga (2014), Bob Peeters (2014), Guy Luzon (2015), Karel Fraeye (2015-16), Jose Riga (2016), Russell Slade (2016), Kevin Nugent (2016), Russell Slade (2016), Karl Robinson (2016-18),

Background; Multiple celebrations - Gary Hart testimonial 26 July '08 at Withdean.
The ex-Prem outfit came down to give Brighton a good work-out, prior to upping the ante for other games against useful opposition. By bizarre coincidence Micky Adams was back for round2 of the Withdean Revolution and was trying to put together a squad capable of reaching the Championship, just as he instigated in 2001. On the face of it, we were a tad short on quality compared to then but originally it took him a whole season to get it right. Albion lost 0-1 and it probably coulda been more but for Kuipers saves. Most people had a nice day anyway, including Hart and Mayo who got offered contracts for '08/9. They'd seen it all before and so had FDM from those back-to-back glory days of fortress Withdean. Alan Pardew was pleased and that's saying something, considering he swapped jobs with 'lucky' Curbishley at successful West Ham. What a small world - Steve Coppell only went to Reading when Pardew first moved down the east end.
Brighton v Charlton on 8 May 2001 @ W'dean.
We first played 'em in our own friendly cup final to celebrate winning the 3rd division title in our 100th year. It was also a testimonial for BHA Pysio Malcolm Stuart and kit-man Jock Riddell, for years of 'over and above' service to Albion. Alan Curbishley had worked wonders at Charlton in their return to the Premiership that very season and got them into the top ten. He had been at the helm since 1990, initially with Steve Gritt for a partnership that lasted five years. As an Albion player, Curbishley made 132 appearances before joining Charlton as coach. He had started at West Ham, coming through ranks of their Academy, so knew a bit about the place at Upton Park.
As a kid, Curbishley (whose name is Llewellyn) was spotted for potential and made an impact for both England schoolboys and youth teams. He was in the side for West Ham at the 1975 Youth Cup final. As a creative midfielder, he played nearly 100 times at Hammers and also got into England's U21 squad. In 1979 he went to Birmingham and enjoyed a successful spell back in division 1. A busted knee and moves to Villa and Charlton saw a slight blip but he helped Athletic up to top flite football. Barry Lloyd brought Curbishley to the Goldstone in 1987 and a go at Third Division tactics. However, he proved to be inspirational as a playmaker and Albion regained div2 status after that one season, with 84 points for 2nd place. As a manager, Curbishley twice took Charlton into the Premiership. After establishing Addicks there since 2001, he took leave of absence in '05 and sat back for an inevitable phone call from that fickle finger of fate. We assume having witnessed a lengthy stadium merry go round at the Valley, which included a short ground share with West Ham, Curbishley understandably passed on the unfulfilled Falmer farce, when instincts told him an old colleague was young enough to walk in his footsteps. Perhaps a lack of money shouldn't really be expected to buy everything. He swapped jobs with Alan Pardew and went to West Ham anyway. Such is destiny.
Footnotes - Athletic were champs of L1 in '11/12. But dropped back into L1 for 16/17. Next reaching p-os in 17/18 & winning finalists for 18/19.

DERBY Back to Top
Championship record from 11/12 to 18/19; 12, 10, 3, 8, 5, 9, 6, 6. * * * p-os - '14, '16, '18, '19.
STATUS; perennial hopers, recalling glory days of yore but never quite making the step up.
MANAGER; Philip Cocu (2019), previously Frank Lampard (2018-19), Gary Rowett (2017-18)

FALMER years; 11/12, 12/13, 13/14, 14/15, 15/16, 16/17 @ Championship. FA Cup - see FY tab, previous encounters.
11/12 - in the Champ's under Gus Poyet; we went to Pride Park at end of Nov and won 0-1. At the Amex in March we won 2-0. BHA, 10th 66pt. DC, 12th 64pt.
12/13 - at theirs in Oct we drew nil-nil. At ours in Jan we won 2-1. BHA 4th 75pt p-os. DC 10th 61pt.
13/14 - under Oscar Garcia; for first home game in Aug we lost 1-2. Away in Jan we lost 1-0. BHA 6th 72pt. DC 3rd 85pt. In p-o s-f we lost; H 1-2, A 4-1
14/15 - campaign under Sami Hyypia; in Dec @ iPro stad we lost 3-0. With Chris Hughton @ the Amex we won 2-0 in March. Albion 20th 47pt, Rams 8th 77pt.
15/16 - away in Dec we drew 2-2. At home in May we drew 1-1. Albion 3rd 89pt, Rams 5th 78pt - p-os
16/17 - at the iPro in Aug we drew 0-0. At the Amex in March we won 3-0. BHA 2nd 93pt promoted, DC 9th 67pt
Champ's record: P12 . W4 D1 L1 . F11 A4 . W1 D3 L2 . F3 A6 . Pt19 GD+4

WITHDEAN era; '02/3, '04/5, '05/6 @ Champ's
Championship - playing for Pride again.
Rams were a constant Prem outfit when Albion fought to survive in the Football League. Once homecoming was achieved, Seagulls quickly flew off to bigger landing grounds. Our Withdean era fixtures took place in div1, which became the Championship in 2004.
02/3 - Steve Coppell had taken over our original tilt at tier two. At W'dean he started on a mission; 16/11/02 H 1-0 - only second home win. A month later at Pride Park; 14/12/02 A 1-0 - a fine line between in and out. B'ton couldn't escape the drop zone, going down 23rd on 45pts. Derby County registered 18th with 52pts.
04/5 - Mark McGhee was gaffer and hoping to stay up. On the road to midlands; 3/11/04 A 3-0 - in the deep end and nose dived. On our lush turf; 5/2/05 H 2-3 - rammed it up the rear end. B'ton hung on for survival 20th on 51pts. County got to 4th with 76pts and p-o participation.
05/6 - Albion kicked off at their stad first; 6/8/05 A 1-1 - had a chance to win it. We still wanted points approaching halfway; 26/11/05 H 0-0 - both teams less than average. B'ton went down as bottom club, while Derby were safe above yer drop zone, 20th 50pt.
C21 total Champ's record: P18 . W5 D2 L2 . F14 A7 . W1 D4 L4 . F4 A11 . Pt24 GD0

Championship record from '99/00 to 18/19; (16, 17, 19 @ Prem), 18, 20, 4, 20, 3, (20 @ Prem), 18, 14, 19, 12, 10, 3, 8, 5, 9, 6, 6
Prem: stayed up - twice '00 & '01, relegated - twice '02 & '08. Champ's: promo - '07, p-os - '05, '14, '16, '18, '19.
PAST Managers; Jim Smith (1995-2001), Colin Todd (2001-2), John Gregory (2002-3), George Burley (2003-5), Phil Brown (2005-6), Billy Davies (2006-7), Paul Jewell (2007-8), Nigel Clough (2009-13), Steve McClaren (2013-15), Paul Clement (2015-16), Darren Wassall (2016), Nigel Pearson (2016), Steve McClaren (2016-17), Gary Rowett (2017-18), Frank Lampard (2018-19)

Info - talk about a tale of two seasons and pride coming before a fall. In '06/7 County recorded useful stats in the Championship; W13 D6 L4 F33 A19 . W12 D3 L8 F29 A27 . Pt84 Po3. They next won their divisional play-off final to gain a place in the elite again. However, in '07/8 at Premiership level; W1 D5 L13 F12 A43 . W0 D3 L16 F8 A46 . Pt11 Po20. Obviously Rams were relegated back to where they came from. You gotta search record books over less than typical top tier seasons to better those numbers, or is it actually worsen? In Nov '08, Rams came down to W'dean and won 1-4 in LC r3 tie. By start of '10/11, Rams were one in a middle order field at second tier. They only made 19th at end of season. In 13/14, 15/16, 17/18 & 18/19 they qualified for play offs. Finalists latest.

FULHAM Back to Top
Championship record from 11/12 to 18/19; (9, 12, 19 @ Prem), 17, 20, 6, 3, (19 @ Prem).
Prem; Top ten - '12, relegated - '14 & '19. Second Season Syndrome; 01/2 -13th then 02/3 - 14th.
STATUS; a regular middle order Prem outfit this century. But law of averages finally let them down in 2014 after well over a decade continually among the elite.
MANAGER; Scott Parker (2019), previously Claudio Ranieri (2018-19), Slavisa Jokanovic (2016-18)
18/19 - P38 W7 D5 L26 F34 A81 GD-47 Pt26 Po19. Wins = 18.4%, Draws = 13.1%, Loss = 68.4% - Ranieri & Parker
Jokanovic did a great job restoring the Thames-side outfit to the Premiership in two full seasons.
SJ COTTAGERS RECORD; to Aug 18 - P130 W61 D34 L35 Wins = 46.9%

FALMER years; 14/15, 15/16, 16/17 @ Championship, 18/19 @ Prem
18/19 - Prem under Chris Hughton, at home in Sept we drew 2-2. Away in Jan we lost 4-2. BHA = 17th 36pt, Fulm = 19th 26pt
Prem; P2 . W0 D1 L0 .F2 A2 . W0 D0 L1 . F2 A4 . GD-2 Pt1

14/15 - under Sami Hyypia; at the Amex in Nov we lost 1-2. In London with Nathan Jones as caretaker we won 2-0 in Dec. Albion 20th 47pt, Cottagers 17th 52pt.
15/16 - under Chris Hughton; at theirs in Aug we won 1-2. At ours in Apr we won 5-0. Albion 3rd 89pt p-os, Cottagers 20th 51pt.
16/17 - at home in Nov we won 2-1. Away in Jan we won 1-2. BHA 2nd 93pt promoted, FFC 6th 80pt p-os
Champ's; P6 W2 D0 L1 F8 A3 . W3 D0 L0 F6 A2 . Pt15 Gd+9

Withdean era - no meetings.
PREM Lge record from '99/00 to 18/19; (9, 1 @ Champ's), 13, 14, 9, 13, 12, 16, 17, 7, 12, 8, 9, 12, 19, (17, 20, 6, 3 @ Champ's), 19.
Prem; Best = 7th, Worst = 19th, Ave = 13th (14 yrs). Top ten - '04, '09, '11, '12, stayed up - '07, '08. Champ's: promo - '01 & '18, p-os - '17.
PAST Managers; Paul Bracewell (1999-2000), Jean Tigana (2000-3), Chris Coleman (2003-7), Lawrie Sanchez (2007), Roy Hodgson (2007-10), Mark Hughes (2010-11), Martin Jol (2011-14), Felix Magath (2014), Kit Symons (2014-15), Slavisa Jokanovic (2016-18), Claudio Ranieri (2018-19)

Note: Fulham initially spent 13 straight years in the Premiership during the early 21st century. They cracked the top-ten just 4 times but were always up against it to hold a regular place there when times got much tougher. '13/14 season was the toughest to date - relegation back to lev2. In 16/17 & 17/18 Cottagers reached Championship play-offs, elevating once more to the elite at the 2018 p-o final. Unfortunately they went straight back down.

HULL Back to Top
CHAMPionship record from 11/12 to 18/19; 8, 2, (16, 18 @ Prem), 4, (18 @ Prem), 18, 13. * * * Prem: stayed up - '14, relegated - '15 & '17
STATUS; sometimes able to gain access to the Prem fixture list but so far unable to consolidate permanency.
MANAGER; Grant McCann (2019), previously Nigel Adkins (2017-19)

FALMER years; 11/12, 12/13, 15/16 @ Champ's. FA Cup see - Falmer Years, previous encounters.
11/12 - under Gus Poyet; at the new Amex in Oct it was nil-nil. Hey at The KC it was er, 0-0 too. BHA, 10th 66pt. HC, 8th 68pt.
12/13 - we went there on opening day in Aug and lost 1-0. At ours in Feb we won 1-0. BHA 4th 75pt p-os. HC 2nd 79pt - promo.
15/16 - under Chris Hughton; at the Amex in Sept we won 1-0. At the KC in Feb we drew 0-0. Albion 3rd 89pt p-os, Tigers 4th 83pt - p-o winners.
Champ's record: P6 . W2 D1 L0 . F2 A0 . W0 D2 L1 . F0 A1 . Pt9 GD+1

WITHDEAN era; '99/00, '00/01 @ L2, '05/6 @ Champ's
Championship - we've been there and back.
Would you believe Tigers were merely a div3 club at old Boothferry Park when Seagulls were flying off to Gillingham every fortnight. Brighton had their homecoming in 1999 and Micky Adams started the first Withdean era revolution.
99/00 - it all seemed straight forward as B'fans flocked to an open-air athletics track; 31/8/99 H 3-0. But reality bites, especially oop north; 5/2/00 A 2-0. B'ton finished in 11th position (L2) with 67pts, Hull 14th 59pts.
00/1 - the following term BHA gathered momentum to become an unstopable force. Thus up on the Humber estuary; 6/10/00 A 0-2. Back at W'dean; 10/3/01 H 3-0. B'ton were promoted as champions. City were 6th with 74pts, enough for p-o stages.
05/6 - we next met in the Championship under Mark McGhee's leadership. City had by then got their brand spanking new KC stadium; 20/8/05 A 2-0 - chances, couldn't restore parity. For the return we were still stuck at W'dean; 16/12/05 H 2-1 - excuse to celebrate spectacular goals. Brighton finished bottom and were relegated. Hull beat he drop comfortably because the last three were well adrift of safety, 18th 52pt.
C21 total EFL record: P12 . W5 D1 L0 . F11 A1 . W1 D2 L3 . F2 A5 . Pt21 GD+7

Championship record from '99/00 to 18/19; (14, 6, 11, 13, 2 @ L2), (2 @ L1), 18, 21, 3, (17, 19 @ Prem), 11, 8, 2, (16, 18 @ Prem), 4, (18 @ Prem), 18, 13
Prem: stayed up - twice '09 & '14, relegated - 3 times '10, '15, '17. Champ's: promo - '08, '13, '16, L1: promo - '05, L2: promo - '04
PAST Managers; Warren Joyce (1998-2000), Brian Little (2000-2), Jan Molby (2002), Peter Taylor (2002-6), Phil Parkinson (2006), Phil Brown (2007-10), Iain Dowie (2010), Nigel Pearson (2010-11), Nicky Barmby (2011-12), Steve Bruce (2012-16), Mike Phelan (2016), Marco Silva (2017), Leonid Slutsky (2017), Nigel Adkins (2017-19)
FA Cup; finalists - 13/14

Background - In summer of 2005, Brighton fans went to see their heroes at super duper KC stadium and Peter Taylor showed us with gestures what we were missing. It was also not lost on our twice Publicly Inquired that City's place was the constituency of Rt Hon MP, Deputy PM and Secretary of State, J Prescott esq. That season proved to be long, hard and failing by May '06 and B'ton bombed. We wished another lower league double-promo side well in trying to consolidate at tier two. God only knows you need half decent gates for a kick-off. Anyway by '07/8 Hull were in the proverbial play-offs. Come '08/9 they competed to gain a place in the Premiership - fairy tale ending by staying up or what? Er no, '9/10 was a relegation year but the dosh was good. For '10/11, Tigers only made 11th place in the Championship. They were in the Prem again for 13/14, 14/15 & 16/17 but then relegated to the Championship once more. At end of 18/19 Tigers were merely middle order at best.

Champ's record from 11/12 to 18/19; (4 @ L1), 19, 17, 16, 19, 5, (16, 20 @ Prem).
Ave = 18th, stayed up - '18 (in 2yrs). Second Season Syndrome: 17/18 - 16th then 18/19 - 20th
STATUS; Town have been a 2nd or 3rd tier outfit this century and from 17/18 were in new territory.
MANAGER; Jan Siewert (2019), previously David Wagner (2015-19)
18/19 - P38 W3 D7 L28 F22 A76 GD-54 Pt16 Po20. Wins = 7.8%, Draws = 18.4%, Loss = 73.6% - Wagner & Siewert
17/18 - P38 W9 D10 L19 F28 A58 GD-30 Pt37 Po16. Wins = 23.6%, Draws = 26.3%, Loss = 50%
David Wagner transformed Town from a lower order Championship side into play-off winners. His mission was to somehow beat the drop and thus stay in the Premier League for another term but it proved too much with the quality & funds available.
DW TERRIERS RECORD; to Aug 2018 - P130 W49 D28 L53 Wins = 37.6%

FALMER years; 12/13, 13/14, 14/15, 15/16, 16/17 @ Champ's, 17/18, 18/19 @ Prem
18/19 - Prem under Chris Hughton, away in Dec we won 1-2. At home in Mar we won 1-0. BHA = 17th 36pt, HT = 20th 16pt
17/18 - away in Dec we lost 2-0. At home in Apr we drew 1-1. BHA 15th 40pt, HT 16th 37pt
PREM; P4 . W1 D1 L0 . F2 A1 . W1 D0 L1 . F2 A3 . Pt7 GD0

12/13 - in the Championship; under Gus Poyet, at the John Smiths stad in November we won 1-2. At the Amex in March we won 4-1. BHA 4th 75pt p-os. HT 19th 58pt.
13/14 - with Oscar Garcia in charge, at ours we drew 0-0 in Dec. At John Smiths we drew 1-1 in April. BHA 6th 72pt p-os, Town 17th 53pt.
14/15 - and Sami Hyypia as boss, at theirs in Oct we drew 1-1. Under Chris Hughton we drew 0-0 at ours in April. Albion 20th 47pt, Town 16th 55pt.
15/16 - at theirs in Aug we drew 1-1. At ours we won 2-1 in Jan. Albion 3rd 89pt p-os, Town 19th 51pt.
16/17 - at the Amex in Sept we won 1-0. At the JS in Jan we lost 3-1. BHA 2nd 93pt promoted, HT 5th 81pt won p-o final on penalties.
CHAMP'S; P10 . W3 D2 L0 F7 A2 . W1 D3 L1 F6 A7 . Pt17 GD+4

WITHDEAN era -'01/2, '06/7, '07/8, '08/9, '09/10, '10/11 @ League One
League One - hoping to revive their ailing health.
Terriers were had a fair run at tier-two level when Seagulls got beached up the Medway in a ground share. An Adams-created Withdean-style BHA initially came across this ex-div1 outfit when meeting up in div2 (L1).
'01/2 - Albion nicked a 1-2 win in Oct oop north and a 1-0 victory next Feb at our open-air sports complex. Brighton got promotion with Taylor and never the twain shall meet until 2006. Both clubs by then had various ups and downs and managers came and went.
'06/7 - at end of October, Wilkins side hammered Town 0-3 away at Galpharm and come following March only managed a 0-0 draw at W'dean. Each outfit finished in lower mid table in a dual disappointing season.
'07/8 - the year after, it wasn't until January that they came down for a 1-1 draw. Up at theirs in March we got done 2-1. Realistically it all but put paid to our p-o challenge. Town finished 10th on 66pts, 3 places and 3pts behind us, 7th 69pt.
'08/9 - in Nov at ours they done us 0-1 and Micky Adams wasn't happy. Russell Slade was a bit happier with a 2-2 up at theirs in April. We finished 16th with 52pts, while they got to 9th on 68pts.
'09/10 - at theirs in Aug, we were thrashed 7-1. Biggest defeat in W'dean era. Gus Poyet was gaffer at W'dean in Feb for a 0-0. BHA finished 13th 59pts, while Huddersfield Tn got to 6th 80pts and L1 play-offs.
'10/11 - we went to Galpharm in Dec and lost 2-1. We also lost in the last ever game at W'dean 2-3 in April. B'ton went up as champs but 3rd placed Town bombed in the p-o final.
C21 total EFL record: P22 . W4 D5 L2 . F11 A7 . W3 D4 L4 . F16 A21 . Pt30 GD-1

HUDDERSFIELD EFL L1 record from '99/00 to 18/19; (8, 22 @ Champ's), 6, 22, (4 @ L2), 9, 4, 15, 10, 9, 6, 3, 4, (19, 17, 16, 19, 5 @ C), (16, 20 @ Prem).
PREM: Ave - 18th, stayed up - 1 time in 2 years 17/18, relegated - 18/19. Champ's: promo - '17, rel - '01. L1: promo - '12, rel - '03. L2: promo - '04.
PAST Managers; Steve Bruce (1999-2000), Lou Macari (2000-2), Mick Wadsworth (2002-3), Peter Jackson (2003-7), Andy Ritchie (2007-8), Stan Ternent (2008), Lee Clark (2008-12), Simon Grayson (2012-13), Phil Brown (2013), Mark Robins (2013-14), Chris Powell (2014-15), David Wagner (2015-19)
FA CUP & LEAGUE CUP; finalists - not in the Prem era. LEAGUE TROPHY; finalists '94.

C21 background - our 'up' from lg2 (d3) in '00/01, coincided with their 'down' from that run in the Champ's (d1). In League1 (d2) of '01/2, we finished another season as title holders, while they blew it in the play-offs. On-field records from that period since have also been polarised. Both teams dropped in '02/3 to remain a level apart, as Town crashed into that bottom tier. In '03/4 Brighton popped back up again via a day out in Cardiff. Huddersfield immediately regained a lg1 place, winning their own end of season knock-out pay day in Wales. During Seagulls' spell in the Champ's of '04/5 & '05/6, Terriers consolidated in 9th and 4th, to be beaten by Barnsley in p-o semi-finals. So it can be seen, having a state of the art stadium is no guarantee of success. Conversely for BHA, any home was better than no home at all.
In '11/12 Town won the L1 p-o final on penalties 8-7, to regain level-two status since 2001. They beat the odds to rise into the Prem and stay there for 17/18 but fell back again at end of 18/19.

LEEDS Back to Top
Championship record from 11/12 to 18/19; 14, 13, 15, 15, 13, 7, 13, 3. * * * Best = 3rd, Worst = 15th, p-os - '19, top half - '17.
STATUS; one time big club but serial underachievers this century with knobs on.
MANAGER; Marcelo Bielsa (2018), previously Paul Heckingbottom (2018), Thomas Christiansen (2017-18)

FALMER years; 11/12, 12/13, 13/14, 14/15, 15/16, 16/17 @ Champ's
11/12 - under Gus Poyet; Amex in Sept it was a 3-3 draw. In Yorkshire during Feb we won 1-2. BHA, 10th 66pt. LU, 14th 61pt.
12/13 - at ours in Nov we drew 2-2. At theirs we won 1-2 in April. BHA 4th 75pt p-os. LU 13th 61pt.
13/14 - opening day under Oscar Garcia at Elland Road we lost 2-1. But won 1-0 at The Amex in Feb. BHA 6th 72pt p-os, LU 15th 57pt.
14/15 - with Sami Hypia in charge; at Elland Rd in Aug we won 0-2. Under Chris Hughton; at the Amex in Feb we also won 2-0. Albion 20th 47pt, United 15th 56pt.
15/16 - away in October we won 1-2. At home in Feb we won 4-0. Albion 3rd 89pt p-os, Whites 13th 59pt.
16/17 - at ours in Dec we won 2-0. At theirs in March we lost 2-0. BHA 2nd 93pt promoted, LU 7th 75pt
Champ's record: P12. W4 D2 L0 . F14 A5 . W4 D0 L2 . F9 A7 . Pt26 GD+11

WITHDEAN era; '04/5, '05/6 @ Champ's, '07/8, '08/9, '09/10 @ L1
Championship & League One - looking on the bright side in passing.
Leeds United fell from the Prem of the new millennium and bottomed out in tier three football with likes of Albion.
04/5 - we'd got back to level2 via an away day in Wales. They were ex-big boys but Mark McGhee's heroic eleven of Oct '04 grabbed a 1-0 win at Withdean. Up at their place in late Jan '05, Albion snatched a creditable 1-1 draw. United didn't exactly set the division alight finishing in mid table but Seagulls retained a spot for the next season against all odds.
05/6 - was equally good for Brighton in terms of results versus Whites. An incredible 3-3 draw at Elland Road in September was followed by a 2-1 victory at Tongdean Lane in January. But we needed more than just those six points. Leeds Utd gained a place in play-offs, only to blow it and Brighton finished bottom.
07/8 - on meeting again, this time in League1 under Dean Wilkins, Leeds nicked the points in a 0-1 W'dean reversal in October '07. Up at theirs in March '08 it ended 0-0. Brighton missed play-offs, Leeds Utd got beat in the Wembley final - oh dear!
08/9 - at theirs in October '08 we got done 3-1 and looked weak for a Micky Adams side. Guess what, stuffed 0-2 at W'dean in Jan '09. We ended up 16th under Russ Slade, while Whites flopped in p-o s-f - oh yeah.
9/10 - Gus Poyet witnessed his first defeat 0-3 at ours in Nov. At theirs in Feb we drew 1-1. BHA finished 13th 59pts, while LU got to 2nd 86pts and auto promo.
C21 total EFL record: P22. W6 D2 L3 . F17 A12 . W4 D4 L3 . F15 A15 . Pt36 GD+5

Championship records from '99/00 to 18/19; (3, 4, 5, 15, 19 @ Prem), 14, 5, 24, (5, 4, 2 @ L1), 7, 14, 13, 15, 15, 13, 7, 13, 3
Prem: top four - twice '00 & '01 (from 5yrs), top six - '02, stayed up - '03, relegated - '04. Champ's: p-os - '06 & '19, rel - '07. L1: promo - '10, p-os - '08 & '09.
LEEDS UNITED were one of the original 22 clubs to play in the new Premier League of 1992.
PAST Managers; David O'Leary (1998-2002), Terry Venables (2002-3), Peter Reid (2003), Eddie Gray (2003-4), Kevin Blackwell (2004-6), Dennis Wise (2006-8), Gary McAllister (2008), Simon Grayson (2008-12), Neil Warnock (2012-13), Brian McDermott (2013-14), Dave Hockaday (2014), Darko Milanic (2014), Neil Readfern (2014-15), Uwe Rosler (2015), Steve Evans (2015-16), Garry Monk (2017), Paul Heckingbottom (2018), Thomas Christiansen (2017-18)

Info - Leeds were docked 15pts for entering administration but made a winning start to '07/8. "The only achievement thus far was that by reaching 12th place, it meant you don't have to wait for the second page on Teletext to see where we are in the table." This line from 2007 did not originate with Dean Wilkins (as he pursued a second year of Brighton & Hove Albion management) but from Dennis Wise at Leeds, er, now United, in League1. When still a baby-faced boss in the Championship, Dennis 'the menace' may have wondered, like his initial DW counterpart in Sussex by the sea, if he really was cut out for football leadership. He'd previously had a rough ride from relegation-threatened 'supporters' at shell-shocked Elland road.
Wise also said, 'I have a nice rapport with them at the moment. Last year it was difficult for us'. Ken Bates his illustrious Chairman, remarked that Yorkshiremen have big mouths, along with short arms and deep pockets. That was a bit rich, coming from a master schemer not known for putting funny money where it might easily be eaten. Allegedly he propositioned Wise to, 'come up north and forget them old Village days'. He aimed to cross the great divide and those West Riding types were gonna pay for it. The ex-Chelsea southern 'softy' apparently then retorted, 'ok!'.
Incidentally prior to LUFC as we know it, a once poor Charles Dickens suggested of Leeds, 'you must like it very much or not at all'. Albi Hove saw this famous writer's quote and quipped, 'I thought he was a pukka Gillingham fan and it's ironical they just loved taking a first point off United this season. They'd got well hammered in Dickens time when playing up at Holbeck, to a side personally funded by local Victorian mill owners rather than a speculating, latter day, nationwide, multi-millionaire property developer!'. By the way, Bates was Chairman of Oldham when Wise wasn't quite yet conceived, before snapping up Chelsea cheap, then embarking on a 'save the Bridge' campaign and investing in a money-spinning hotel complex at the SW London ground. Bates watched Wise's post-Chelsea career and knew the former Millwall player-manager and Southampton caretaker was keen to go other places.
Micky Adams had also parted company with the combative little midfielder at Leicester, on occasion of a pre-season scrap among his squad. Adams installed him again at Coventry and don't bother asking Brighton fans about being wise after those proverbial events at brand new Ricoh Arena.
Leeds considered themselves a big Pike in a small pond and were readily consuming smaller fish out of their league. Brighton at least hoped to be a proven top ten Championship club at Falmer over the next decade, with aspirations of following City up-stream into a Premiership lake. All sorts of glory hunters, party goers and hangers-on will jump on these rolling bandwagons again and Bates and Knight have enough business nous to encourage this orgy ad-infinitum. Bates eventually transformed Stamford Bridge before doing a mega-deal with foreigners and Knight had a huge hospitality 'A list' of financial big-hitters to work through.
Meanwhile W & W had their directors box backing, who continued to promote 'every confidence in the manager' - as long as they produced er, promotion. Micky Adams remarked, after hiring and during Wise's Sky Blue period, 'I can understand lesser managers than myself would not have done it. But I don't have to worry about my job because I'm a better manager'. Well, that old football world certainly turned some and while one bloke ended up awile in lowly Essex as assistant, the other got lucky. Bates installed a 'cor blimey' Londoner in a 40k capacity venue oop north, with massive stands that were three quarters filled. Knight alternatively needed his man from Middlesex and favourite 90's player, to re-create glory years pre-Falmer, beginning with a record attendance at Withdean for Whites visit. Btw it all ended in tears. Go to Characters - Adams, Wilkins, Poyet and BHA W'dean managers.
For '10/11 back in the Championship, Whites got to 7th and missed p-o phases. In years to 17/18 LUFC only once more got as near to p-os (16/17) and remain serial underachievers. At end of 18/19 Whites got 3rd place in the Championship but got beaten in p-o s-fs.

LUTON Back to Top
League ONE record from 11/12 to 18/19; (5, 7, 1 @ Conf), (8, 11, 4, 2 @ L2), 1. * * * Promo - '14 cn, '18 L2, '19 L1
STATUS; fell from level2 thru lower divs into non-league but on a long way back to previous days of glory.
MANAGER; Graeme Jones (2019), previously Mick Harford (2019), Nathan Jones (2016-19)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '03/4 @ L1, '05/6 @ Champ's, '07/8 @ L1
Championship & League One - stuck up the M1 looking for a home.
03/4 - Steve Coppell was manager when Albion first entertained Town in div2 (L1) for some years. On August Bank Holiday Monday, Brighton won 2-0 at Withdean - with luck and the ludicrous. In bleak midwinter during Mark McGhee's leadership, we lost 2-0 at Kenilworth Road - no luck and still ludicrous. BHA went back up to Champ's via play-offs but Luton missed the cut for knockout stages.
05/6 - In the Championship two years later, we went to Town between Xmas and New Year and got hammered 3-0. They came down in March and drew 1-1. Albion were relegated from bottom place, while Luton were useful mid table finishers.
07/8 - when they joined us in League1 a couple of seasons down the line, Dean Wilkins was in charge. At B'ton's temporary home in November, Albion won 3-1. In April for the return at decrepit KR we done 'em 1-2 to send Town down. We missed play-offs though.
C21 EFL record; P6 . W2 D1 L0 . F6 A2 . W1 D0 L2 . F2 A6 . Pt10 GD0

EFL L1 record from '03/4 to 18/19; 10, 1, (10, 22 @ C), 24, (24 @ L2), (4, 3, 5, 7, 1 @ Conf), (8, 11, 4, 2 @ L2), 1
Champ's: Best = 10th '06 (in 2yrs), Worst = 22nd '07, relegated - '07. NL: promo - '14, L2 promo - '18, p-os - '17, rel - '09, L1: promo - '19, rel - '08.
PAST Managers; John Still (2013-14), Hakan Hayrettin (2014), John Still (2014-15), Nathan Jones (2016-19), Mick Hartford (2019)
EFL Trophy; winners - 08/09

Info - Kenilworth Road ground from outside views flatters to deceive. Drive down the link road to town from the M1 and it towers above like a pukka stadium. Trouble is it's squeezed in by housing and a tad lopsided and squat. Plans were floated for a new place at or near J10, J11 and latterly J12. It always seemed to run into trouble from Nimby jobsworth councils. State planners quashed one initially and as one-time director Eric Morecambe said, 'not a lot of people know that'. Administration burned local curry 'pie in the sky' proposals. Town also had a 30pt deduction slapped on for '08/9 when under a new board at lg2 - choker! They dropped into non-league but won the JPT trophy on route. In '9/10 Hatters got to play-offs in Blue Square Prem. There was crowd trouble to boot. For '10/11 there was more pain but no gain, when Town lost the p-o final on penalties. In '11/12 they reached p-os again (5th). But failed to get there for '12/13. In '13/14 Hatters ran away with the non-league div. By 16/17 they got a p-o place in L2 and were again promoted at end of 17/18. Town finished 18/19 as L1 Champions.

CHAMPionship record from 11/12 to 18/19; 7, 16, 12, 4, 2, (19 @ Prem), 5, 7. * * * Champ's: promo - '16, p-os - '15, '18. Prem: relegated - '17
STATUS; flirt with regaining Prem membership but appear to be a borderline case at best.
MANAGER; Jonathan Woodgate (2019), previously Tony Pulis (2017-19), Garry Monk (2017)

FALMER years; 11/12, 12/13, 13/14, 14/15, 15/16 @ Champ's . FA Cup - see Falmer Years, previous encounters.
11/12 - under Gus Poyet; we went to the Riverside in December and lost 1-0. At the Amex in March we drew 1-1. BHA, 10th 66pt. Middlesbro, 7th 70pt.
12/13 - at ours we lost 0-1 in October. At theirs in April we won 0-2. BHA 4th 75pt p-os. Boro 16th 59pt.
13/14 - under Oscar Garcia; in the north-east we won 0-1 in Dec. At ours in March we lost 0-2. BHA 6th 72pt p-os, Boro 12th 64pt.
14/15 - under Sami Hyypia; we lost 1-2 at home in Oct. With Chris Hughton we drew 0-0 away in May. Albion 20th 47pt, Boro 4th 85pt (p-os).
15/16 - at home in Dec we lost 0-3. Away in May we drew 1-1. BHA 3rd 89pt p-os, Boro 2nd 89pt promoted runners up.
Champ's; P10 . W0 D1 L4 . F2 A9 . W2 D2 L1 . F4 A2 . GD-5 Pt9

Withdean era; no league fixtures. See previous encounters for League Cup
PREM records from '99/00 to 18/19; 12, 14, 12, 11, 11, 7, 14, 12, 13, 19, (11, 12, 7, 16, 12, 4, 2 @ Champ's), 19, (5, 7 @ Champ's)
Prem: best = 7th '05, worst = 19th '09 & '17, top ten - once '05, relegated - twice '09 & '17. Champ's: promo - '16, p-os - '15 & '18.
MIDDLESBROUGH were one of the original 22 clubs to play in the new Premier League of 1992.
PAST Managers; Bryan Robson (1991-2001), Steve McClaren (2001-6), Gareth Southgate (2006-9), Gordon Strachan (2009-10), Tony Mowbray (2010-13), Aitor Karanka (2013-17), Steve Agnew (2017), Gary Monk (2017), Tony Pulis (2017-19)
LEAGUE CUP; winners - 03/04

Info - Boro hoped to rule in the north-east. Hey, they only went down to the Championship in a fellow tits-up with Newcastle during '08/9. In '9/10 Boro were left short on points outside play-offs. For '10/11 they finished 12th at level two. But finally made the Prem at end of 15/16, only to return immediately next year. In 17/18 Boro were once more in play-offs, just missing k-o phases again in 18/19.

MILLWALL Back to Top
Championshp record from 11/12 to 18/19; 16, 20, 19, 22, (4, 6 @ L1), 8, 21. * * * Champ's: Stayed up - 13, 14, 19, Relegated - 15. L1: promo - 17
STATUS; a regular second tier outfit who drift into lower league on occasion but seem to have bounce back dna.
MANAGER; Neil Harris (2015)

FALMER years; 11/12, 12/13, 13/14, 14/15 @ Champ's. FA Cup - see FY tab, previous encounters.
11/12 - under Gus Poyet; at the Den in October it was 1-1. At the Amex in February it was 2-2. BHA, 10th 66pt, Millwall, 16th 57pt.
12/13 - at theirs in September we won 1-2. At ours in Dec we drew 2-2. BHA 4th 75pt p-os. Millwall 20th 56pt.
13/14 - under Oscar Garcia; at the Amex we drew 1-1 in Aug. At the Den in March we won 0-1. BHA 6th 72pt p-os, Lions 19th 48pt.
14/15 - with Sami Hyypia; at ours in Dec we lost 0-1. Under Chris Hughton at theirs in March we drew 0-0. Albion 20th 47pt, Lions 22nd 41pt, relegated.
Champ's record: P8 . W0 D3 L1 . F5 A6 . W2 D2 L0 . F4 A2 . Pt11 GD+1

WITHDEAN era; '02/3, '04/5, '05/6 @ Champ's, '06/7, '07/8, '08/9, '09/10 @ L1
Championship & League One - life with the Lions.
Millwall turn out at the Den in SE16, alongside the railway from London Bridge. It's one stop and not a million miles from Sussex, so often is regarded as an Xmas or Easter local derby. Originally Millwall Rovers played north of the Thames on Isle of Dogs. However they ended up in south-side Bermondsey and stayed. A move from old to new Den in 1993 gave them a best ever season in div1. After slipping back to div2 for five years, Mark McGhee became manager and took Lions up as champions in 2001. Martin Hinshelwood's Brighton next followed Millwall into the Championship.
02/3 - in ending 23rd BHA suffered relegation after one term at tier two. Both fixtures were one-nil wins for the home side. That score was repeated again and again during replacement Steve Coppell's unlucky initial attempt to establish at higher standard. Lions 9th, tended to be middle order.
04/5 - they didn't do us too many favours later either, when again dual home advantages prevailed with clean sheets - 2-0 away, 1-0 home. M'wall were 10th, B'ton 20th. Mark McGhee had come to us and got BHA straight back into the Championship in 2004 and managed to hold a place there.
05/6 - in a bizarre twist of fate, each side enjoyed an away victory - 1-2 home, 0-2 away. In the event it did neither a lot of good. M'wall made 22nd and B'ton 24th because both clubs tailed off and were easily relegated to League1.
06/7 - by strange coincidence, results for Dean Wilkins third tier fixtures duplicated away victories but only 0-1. The metropolitan unit got 10th and London by the sea side 18th, finishing below mid table. Also that year Brighton edged past Millwall in JPT quarter-finals, on a night of capital city sudden-death penalty shoot-out.
07/8 - there was yet more doubling up, when both big-city boys put three past visitors for no reply to keep even steven a real diamond geezer. You couldn't make it up. BHA got to 7th, Lions 17th beat the drop by 4 places and 4 pts.
08/9 - under Micky Adams in nov '08 at ours on a wet one, we done 'em 4-1. Managerless at the Den, we won 0-1 in Feb '09. We stayed up but they lost a p-o final.
09/10 - under Russ Slade, at theirs at end of Aug we got a 1-1 draw. Gus Poyet was gaffero at W'dean in Jan '10. We lost 0-1. BHA finished 13th 59pts, while Millwall were 3rd 85pts and in play-offs again. Better luck this time too.
C21 total EFL record: P22 . W4 D3 L4 . F15 A11 . W5 D3 L3 . F9 A9 . Pt33 GD+4

Championship records from '99/00 to 18/19; (5, 1 @ L1), 4, 9, 10, 10, 23, (10, 17, 5, 3 @ L1), 9, 16, 20, 19, 22, (4, 6 @ L1), 8, 21
Champ's: Best = 4th '02, Worst = 23rd '06. Top half - 6 times (in 12yrs), stayed up - 3 times, relegated - twice '06 & '14. L1: promo - '01, '10, '17
PAST Managers; Keith Stevens (1998-2000), Mark McGhee (2000-3), Dennis Wise (2003-5), Steve Claridge (2005), Colin Lee (2005), David Tuttle (2005-6), Nigel Spackman (2006), Willie Donachie (2006-7), Kenny Jackett (2007-13), Steve Lomas (2013), Ian Holloway (2013-15), Neil Harris (2015)
FA CUP; finalists - 03/04

Info - we went there a lot during the Withdean era, which also brought mixed memories flooding back of previous manager Mark McGhee. He went, in the year 2000 to Millwall and in that new beginning, created heaven and then it became hell. He took them up to division 1 and on to play-offs but crowd trouble meant imposed restrictions at the Den, when sky high gates fell to meagre on rocky earth. McGhee was under enforced gas pressure, as imposed Premiership impossibilities simmered on a low rear burner. The following season, he moved down to Brighton and took us back into the Championship alongside Millwall again. Both clubs later dropped into familiar League 1 surroundings and McGhee was once more feeling pressurised.
Dick Knight appointed Mark McGhee in 2003, hoping he could make new city boys Brighton a regular Championship side, like he had with our neighbours in the capital and one enduring life with the Lions. Our new manager responded with a defensive, 'there is no magic wand'. This no nonsense Glaswegian had a very broad playing and managing experience, also saying, 'I don't want to be known as a Second Division specialist'. McGhee arrived here after long deliberation and not as a knee jerk reaction to wanting a job. By own admission, he was prepared to give 100pc but only signed for two years initially, as a sort of pre-nuptial honeymoon period.
Those opening games of '03/4 at lesser standard for our gritty Scots Boss were, in footy speak a 'mare. He added to the squad immediately and held a doctrine of blooding young players considered of pro ability. His aim was to finish in the top two. It didn't happen quite that way but a prominent Youth Policy flourished from '04/5 during two subsequent years in the Championship. However establishment there stalled, as things went badly wrong towards that disappointing end to '05/6 season. Even a 1st of April win at lowly Millwall was merely celebrated as another bizarre event, although it could be seen just what youth, pace, enthusiasm and commitment might eventually achieve. Early in '06/7 McGhee was moved on in favour of youth coach Dean Wilkins, whose first match was actually at Millwall. By bizarre coincidence, we were also managerless again at the Den fixture for '08/9 - see Micky Adams. For '10/11 Lions got to 9th in the Championship. The Bermondsey outfit dropped back into L1 for 15/16 but regained C status for 17/18 via the p-o final - subsequently ending there in 8th. At end of 18/19 it was a different story, just above the d-z.
Lions hosted Seagulls in March 2019 for an FA Cup QF tie shown live on tv.

Championship record from 11/12 to 18/19; 19, 8, 11, 14, 16, 21, 17, 9. * * * Top half - 3 times.
STATUS; trying to find the silver bullet and become a top six second tier side, thereby putting the past to rest.
MANAGER; Sabri Lamouchi (2019), previously Martin O'Neill (2019), Aitor Karanka (2018-19), Mark Warburton (2017-18)

FALMER years; 11/12, 12/13, 13/14, 14/15, 15/16, 16/17 @ Champ's
11/12 - under Gus Poyet; at the Amex during December we won 1-0 in stoppage. At the City Ground in March it was 1-1 when we conceded in stoppage. BHA, 10th 66pt. NF 19th 50pt.
12/13 - at ours in Dec we drew 0-0. At theirs in March we drew 2-2 - in stoppage. BHA 4th 75pt p-os. NF 8th 67pt.
13/14 - under Oscar Garcia; at the Amex in Oct we lost 1-3. At the City Ground we won 1-2 in May. BHA 6th 72pt p-os, NF 11th 65pt.
14/15 - under Sami Hyypia; at the City Ground in Sept we drew 0-0. With Chris Hughton; in Jan we lost 2-3 at the Amex. Albion 20th 47pt, Reds 14th 59pt.
15/16 - at home in Aug we won 1-0. Away in Apr we won 1-2. Albion 3rd 89pt p-os, Reds 16th 55pt.
16/17 - at the Amex in Aug we won 3-0. At the City Ground in March we lost 3-0. BHA 2nd 93pt promoted, NF 21st 51pt
Champ's record: P12 . W3 D1 L2 . F8 A6 . W2 D3 L1 . F7 A8 . Pt19 GD+1

WITHDEAN era; '02/3, '04/5 @ Champ's, '06/7, '07/8 @ L1
Championship & League One - a big fish stuck upstream on the Trent.
Brighton fans could hardly believe they were going to half decent ex-prem and div1 grounds like Forest's in 2002 although getting beat regularly.
02/3 - Steve Coppell had arrived to 'rescue' us from certain relegation. We first visited the City Ground with 29000 present on a Wednesday nite in November '02 and lost 3-2. Back at our place in March '03 we murdered 'em 1-0 in front of 6800 south-coast punters. They made play-offs in 6th while we went down from 23rd.
04/5 - Mark McGhee's B'ton was back up the Trent for a Championship fixture. In Sept '04 Albion nicked a 0-1 victory watched by 20k. At W'dean in Jan '05 it was 0-0 when 6700 turned up. We eventually stayed up 20th but Forest 23rd dropped to League1.
06/7 - we'd joined them and met again by Trent Bridge with an 18k audience in August '06, losing 2-1. McGhee lost his job soon after. Forest visited in Feb '07 and got done 2-1 when Dean Wilkins was boss. Nott'm F finished 4th and blew p-os, BHA made 18th. 7700 was our best home gate of that season.
07/8 - in early December we hosted Reds, to get beat 0-2 in front of 6500. On Easter Monday in March at their place it was 0-0 in front of 18k for a p-o battle. Reds achieved 2nd and auto promo, while we didn't even make play-offs in 7th.
C21 total EFL record: P20 . W5 D2 L3 . F11 A9 . W3 D4 L3 . F11 A13 . Pt30 GD0

Championship records from '99/00 to 18/19; 14, 11, 16, 6, 14, 23, (7, 4, 2 @ L1), 19, 3, 6, 19, 8, 11, 14, 16, 21, 17, 9
Champ's: best = 3rd '10, worst = 23rd '05, p-os - 3 times '03, '10 & '11, top half - 4 times (in 17yrs), stayed up - 3 times, relegated - '05. L1: promo - '08.
NOTTINGHAM FOREST were one of the original 22 clubs to play in the new Premier League of 1992.
PAST Managers; David Platt (1999-2001), Paul Hart (2001-4), Joe Kinnear (2004), Gary Megson (2005-6), Colin Calderwood (2006-8), Billy Davies (2009-11), Steve McClaren (2011), Steve Cotterill (2011-12), Sean O'Driscoll (2012), Alex McLeish (2012-13), Billy Davies (2013-14), Stuart Pearce (2014-15), Dougie Freedman (2015-16), Paul Williams (2016), Philippe Montanier (2016), Gary Brazil (2017), Mark Warburton (2017-18), Aitor Karanka (2018-19), Martin O'Neil (2019)

Info - in 2004 Brighton fans recall a visit to the City Ground alongside the River Trent, where there were flowers. Brian Clough had died a week previously and opposite Forest's club shop was a cellophane covered sea of blooms, all sorts of football mementoes, other trivia and also shirts. One of these was of blue and white stripes, as a touching tribute to his inspiring though brief excursion to the south coast, over thirty years before.
The Chairman responsible for bringing such a big name to boost lowly Albion was Mike Bamber. Sadly, he too passed on but is remembered as prime mover and instigator of BHA's glory days. Clough deserted to Leeds after nine months of only popping over from the midlands, to stay in hotels and Brighton sued. In an out-of-court settlement, a year after raising Sussex hopes to fever pitch, the Messiah admitted letting down, 'the best Chairman I ever worked for'. Bamber had given Him total freedom, carte blanche but perhaps not enough money to eventually turn Albion into a full member of the elite. There was Boardroom talk over drinks, of a new ground but the Borough Council could hardly be described as being onside or remotely supportive. Inevitably it became a dream that slipped away but not finally put to rest. Of course, there will always be football's ups and downs over time. Bamber subsequently presided over our club in division 1 and a FA Cup final. Clough simultaneously took Nottingham Forest to a peak of European success. They were then reduced to League 1 status like little old us. Hey, it's still better than those gory days, ain't it? Although for decade after long twentieth century decade, an overriding assumption prevailed - Brighton definitely had potential.
On 24 July 1999, Nott'm Forest were first visiting team to grace the pitch at leafy Withdean. However you wanted to view it, they were a big club and it had been a very long time since we'd entertained such a salubrious outfit. A tad downhill for the Reds since them on-the-up nineties, with relegation a huge shock.
In '9/10 Forest got into Championship play-offs. Although glory days were put on hold for a while longer. They did it again in '10/11 and guess what? Yeah, see yer in the Championship at Falmer! In years since then to 17/18 Forest were a lower order outfit. At end of 18/19 they got into top ten but on pts well outside p-os.

PRESTON Back to Top
Championship record from 11/12 to 18/19; (15, 14, 5, 3 @ L1), 11, 11, 7, 14. * * * Top half - 3 times.
STATUS; another historic northern club who fell from grace but can compete in today's EFL.
MANAGER; Alex Neil (2017)

FALMER years - 15/16, 16/17 @ Champ's
15/16 - under Chris Hughton; at home during October we drew 0-0. Away in March we also drew 0-0. Albion 3rd 89pt p-os, Lillywhites 11th 62pt.
16/7 - at ours in Oct we drew 2-2. At theirs in Jan we lost 2-0. BHA 2nd 93pt promoted, PNE 11th 62pt
Champ's record: P4 . W0 D2 L0 . F2 A2 . W0 D1 L1 . F0 A2 . Pt3 GD-2

WITHDEAN era - '02/3, '04/5, '05/6 @ Champ's
Championship - more of a museum venue these days.
North End were only a div2 club during Albion's, Gillingham and early Withdean era days. They made the leap to div1 (Champ's) in 2001 as BHA scrambled out of div3 (L2). We'd quickly got to join 'em at tier two and all fixtures are an equivalent Championship standard.
02/3 - Steve Coppell had come in to attempt a rescue act and keep us in the div. We went to Deepdale following an abysmal start to the season; 23/11/02 A 2-2 - unbeaten in four. A do or die run-in arrived; 12/4/03 H 0-2 - lost the plot. B'ton went down from 23rd on 45pts. PNE were 12th with 61pts.
04/5 - Mark McGhee was gaffer and had a similar brief. It was still summer at W'dean; 28/8/04 H 1-0 - pressure pressed home. During a fraught run-in; 5/4/05 A 3-0 - pretended to play 'em. B'ton survived in 20th 51pts, PNE 4th 75pts and p-os.
05/6 - next season it was even tougher to consolidate among big clubs. Early season trip up the M6; 27/8/05 A 0-0 - used pace to contest. For the return south; 11/3/06 H 0-0 - huffed, puffed, missed chances. B'ton hit rock bottom and were relegated. PNE made p-os again.
C21 total Champ's record: P10 . W1 D3 L1 . F3 A4 . W0 D3 L2 . F2 A7 . Pt9 GD-6

Championship records from '99/00 to 18/19; (1 @ L1), 4, 8, 12, 15, 5, 4, 7, 15, 6, 17, 22, (15, 14, 5, 3 @ L1), 11, 11, 7, 14
Champ's: best = 4th, worst = 22nd, p-os - '01, '05, '06, '09, top half - 6 times (in 15yrs), relegated - '11. L1: promo - '00 & '15, p-os - '14
PAST Managers; David Moyes (1998-2002), Craig Brown (2002-4), Billy Davies (2004-6), Paul Simpsom (2006-7), Alan Irvine (2007-9), Darren Ferguson (2010), Phil Brown (2010-11), Graham Westley (2011-13), Simon Grayson (2013-17)

Background - during the noughties Lilywhites became a bench-mark Championship side and forever seemed to be competing for, if not actually contesting play-off stages. Brighton however couldn't consolidate in tier two and faced an uphill struggle without a decision on our new stadium. The less than risible R word, resources, revenue and renewing, or not, of season-tickets, all took a toll.
So Brighton was forced to sell some squad members to stay afloat. A black hole that was Withdean and light-years distant nebula of Falmer sucked the club toward potential catastrophe. Preston were a club with know-how and could set an example for success if only BHA could rejoin 'em.
By end of '07/8 PNE had slipped to mid table mediocrity and the Prem was merely a dream. At end of '08/9 BHA were on course to make a pukka bid for a future meeting at Falmer. If it happened, would they be deeply depressed at Deepdale by then? Time would tell. In '9/10, Lilywhites were still somewhere deep enough - in mid table anonimity. It fell apart for '10/11 when they were relegated to L1 in 22nd. In '13/14 NE reached L1 p-os, being promoted the following season. In 17/18 they were next just outside lev2 play offs. But at end of 18/19 Lilywhites were merely midtable.

QPR Back to Top
Championship record from 11/12 to 18/19; (17, 20 @ Prem), 4, (20 @ Prem), 12, 18, 16, 19. * * * Champ's: p-os - '14. Prem: relegated - twice '13 & '15.
STATUS; a lesser metropolitan outfit with constraints on expansion, physically and otherwise.
MANAGER; Mark Warburton (2019), previously Steve McClaren (2018-19), Ian Holloway (2016-18)

FALMER years; 13/14, 15/16, 16/17 @ Championship
13/14 - under Oscar Garcia; at Loftus Road we drew 0-0 in Sept. We won 2-0 at the Amex in March. BHA 6th 72pt p-os, QPR 4th 80pt. Rangers won p-o final and were promoted to the Prem.
15/16 - under Chris Hughton; away in Dec we drew 2-2. At home in Apr we won 4-0. Albion 3rd 89pt p-os, Hoops 12th 60pt.
16/17 - at ours in Dec we won 3-0. At theirs in Apr we won 1-2. BHA 2nd 93pt promoted, QPR 18th 53pt
Champ's record: P6 . W3 D0 L0 . F9 A0 . W1 D2 L0 . F4 A3 . Pt14 GD+10

WITHDEAN era; '01/2 '03/4 @ L1, '04/5, '05/6 @ Champ's
Cnampionship & League One - aiming for loftier heights.
Rangers were a continual div1 outfit while Albion struggled to leave div3 behind.
01/2 - both clubs were in div2 and looking to keep and make a leap of faith. Micky Adams was in charge to start; 8/9/01 H 2-1 - fortress or what? Peter Taylor took over to complete; 26/12/01 A 0-0 - happy New Year. B'ton won the div, R's were 8th o/s p-os on 71pts.
03/4 - Steve Coppell was gaffer to begin back in div2; 18/8/03 H 2-1 - quite possibly realistic. Mark McGhee came in for remainder; 17/1/04 A 2-1 - quote, P right-off. B'ton got 4th and went up via p-os. QPR obtained auto promo from 2nd.
04/5 - each club wanted to establish in tier two. An early term test at W'dean; 18/9/04 H 2-3 - cue philanthropic realism. Back up west at Loftus Rd; 1/1/05 A 0-0 - bird in the loft worth one pt in Shepherds Bush. B'ton survived in 20th, Rangers got to 11th.
05/6 - it was a struggle for BHA. We met Boxing Day again; 26/12/05 H 1-0 - bruising Xmas encounter. For a tough run-in in W12; 18/3/06 A 1-1 - Seagulls fed on scraps. B'ton were relegated from bottom posn. QPR were safe just above the drop zone 21st 50pt.
C21 total EFL record: P14 . W6 D0 L1 . F16 A5 . W1 D5 L1 . F6 A6 . Pt26 GD+11

Championship record from '99/00 to 18/19; 10, 23, (8, 4, 2 @ L1), 11, 21, 18, 14, 11, 13, 1, (17, 20 @ Prem), 4, (20 @ Prem), 12, 18, 16, 19
Prem: stayed up - '12 (from 3yrs), relegated - twice '13 & '15. Champ's: best = 1st '11, worst = 23rd '01, promo - '11, p-os - '14, relegated - '01. L1: promo - '04
QUEENS PARK RANGERS were one of the original 22 clubs to play in the new Premier League of 1992.
PAST Managers; Gerry Francis (1998-2001), Ian Holloway (2001-6), Gary Waddock (2006), John Gregory (2006-7), Luigi Di Canio (2007-8), Iain Dowie (2008), Paulo Sousa (2008-9), Jim Magilton (2009), Paul Hart (2009-10), Neil Warnock (2010-12), Mark Hughes (2012), Harry Redknapp (2012-15), Chris Ramsey (2015), Neil Warnock (2015), Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink (2015-16), Ian Holloway (2016-18), Steve McClaren (2018-19)

Info - Rangers needed some investment because they were mid table anonimity in '06/7 and '07/8. A big-time owner took over and fun began in the Bush. We once played 'em on a regular basis, perhaps our rebirth will coincide with a chance to visit White City again. For '9/10 they were very mid table at Loftus Road. But with big money at the west end outfit, hoops won the Champ's title in '10/11 - despite threat of points deduction. But they dropped out of the Prem in '12/13, then bounced back after '13/14... oh dear, down again after 14/15. At end of 18/19 Hoops were again merely lower order in lev2.

READING Back to Top
Championship record from 11/12 to 18/19; 1, (19 @ Prem), 7, 19, 17, 3, 20, 20. * * * Champ's: promo - '12, p-os - '17. Prem: relegated - '13.
STATUS; Royals... but being close to Windsor is no qualifier for regaining membership of the elite.
MANAGER; Jose Manuel Gomes (2018), previously Paul Clement (2018), Jaap Stam (2016-18)

FALMER years; 11/12, 13/14, 14/15, 15/16, 16/17 @ Champ's .FA Cup & EFL Cup ties - see Falmer Years, previous encounters.
11/12 - under Gus Poyet; we lost at the Mad Stad on Boxing Day 3-0. At the Amex at Easter we lost 0-1. BHA, 10th 66pt. Reading, 1st 89pt - promoted to Prem.
13/14 - with Oscar Garcia in charge; we went to theirs in Sept and drew 0-0. At ours in March we drew 1-1. BHA 6th 72pt p-os, Royals 7th 71pt.
14/15 - Nathan Jones in for Sami Hyypia; @ the Amex for Xmas drew 2-2. With Chris Hughton @ Mad Stad, lost 2-1 in March. Albion 20th 47pt, Royals 19th 50pt.
15/16 - away in October we drew 1-1. At home in March we won 1-0. Albion 3rd 89pt p-os, Royals 17th 52pt.
16/17 - at theirs in Aug we drew 2-2. At ours in Feb we won 3-0. BHA 2nd 93pt promoted, RFC 3rd 85pt p-os
Champ's record: P10 . W2 D2 L1 . F7 A4 . W0 D3 L2 . F4 A8 . Pt11 GD-1

WITHDEAN era; '01/2 @ L1, '02/3, '04/5, '05/6 @ Champ's
Championship & League One - made the best of auto trade in.
Royals were a div1 side at Elm Park when Albion last played at the Goldstone Ground in 1997. The world turned and we met at Withdean and the Madejski in '01/2 for div2 (L1) and '02/3 in div1 (C). Since then, '04/5 and '05/6 were at Championship level.
01/2 - Peter Taylor was boss; 11/2/01 H 3-1. 9/3/02 A 0-0. B'ton 1st 90pt, Rd'ng 2nd 84pt. Both promoted
02/3 - next term, Steve Coppell came in to stop the rot; 30/11/02 H 0-1. 4/4/03 A 2-1. B'ton 23rd rel, Rd'ng 4th 79pt p-os.
04/5 - back at tier two, Mark McGhee was pilot; 7/8/04 A 3-2 - was ruddy well robbed. 21/3/05 H 0-1 - read all about it. B'ton survived 20th 51pt, Rd'ng 7th 70pt.
05/6 - in the Champ's, 9/8/05 H 0-2 - always struggling. 10/12/06 A 5-1 - lost the plot. B'ton 24th rel, Rd'ng 1st promo.
C21 total EFL record: P18 . W3 D2 L4 . F10 A9 . W1 D4 L4 . F9 A17 . Pt18 GD-7

Championship record from '99/00 to 18/19; (10, 3, 2 @ L1), 4, 9, 7, 1, (8, 18 @ Prem), 4, 9, 5, 1, (19 @ Prem), 7, 19, 17, 3, 20, 20
Prem: top ten - '07, relegated - twice '08 & '13. Champ's: promo - '06, '12, L1: promo - '02
PAST Managers; Alan Pardew (1999-2003), Steve Coppell (2003-9), Brendan Rodgers (2009), Brian McDermott (2009-13), Nigel Adkins (2013-14), Steve Clarke (2014-15), Brian McDermott (2015-16), Jaap Stam (2016-18), Paul Clement (2018)

Background - Steve Coppell over-achieved with Royals since going there in October 2003. Unbelievably he got 'em to 8th in '06/7, just o/s Europe Cup spots. But who would begrudge him success in a small provincial town on the M4 to London? If the Falmer saga had been written differently in the stars, Adams, Taylor or Coppell might have remained doing business for sleeping giant Seagulls. These men all quickly went fully professional after a makeshift life around north Brighton suburbs.
Madejski's financial backing allowed Royal Berkshire fanatical footy on the site of an old refuse tip. For a while they lived the dream. Money talked and it was much better than Elm Park days - even if McGhee was supposed to be the Man then. But you need mega-bucks to maintain an elite life-style and in '07/8 came the crash. As they said at celebrating Fulham, close but no cigar. Coppell parted company after failing to get promo thru Champ's p-o phases in '08/9. In '9/10, Royals were just about top half of Champ's table. They reached p-o final in '10/11 but got beat. It happened again in 16/17 - lost on penalties! At end of 18/19 Royals were again closer to the drop zone than even a midtable berth.

SHEFF WED Back to Top
Championship record from 11/12 to 18/19; (2 @ L1), 18, 16, 13, 6, 4, 15, 12. * * * p-os - '16 & '17.
STATUS; a big club in many respects but flatters to deceive in recent years.
MANAGER; tba, previously Steve Bruce (2019), Jos Luhukay (2018-19), Carlos Carvalhal (2015-17)

FALMER years - 12/13, 13/14, 14/15, 15/16, 16/17 @ Champ's
12/13 - under Gus Poyet: at ours in Sept we won 3-0. At theirs in Feb we lost 3-1. BHA 4th 75pt p-s. SW 18th 58pt.
13/14 - with Oscar Garcia; at the Amex in Oct we drew 1-1. At theirs we lost 1-0 in March. BHA 6th 72pt p-os, Wed 16th 53pt.
14/15 - under Sami Hyypia; at the Amex opening day we lost 0-1. With Chris Hughton we drew 0-0 in Sheffield during Feb. Albion 20th 47pt, Owls 13th 60pt.
15/16 - away in Nov we drew 0-0. At home in March we drew 0-0. Albion 3rd 89pt, Owls 6th 74pt - p-o 1st leg 2-0, 2nd leg 1-1, agg lost 1-3
16/17 - at theirs in Oct we won 1-2. At hours in Jan we won 2-1. BHA 2nd 93pt pomoted, SW 4th 81pt p-os
Champ's record: P10 . W2 D2 L1 . F6 A3 . W1 D2 L2 . F3 A5 . Pt13 GD+1

WITHDEAN era - '02/3 @ Champ's, '03/4 @ L1, '05/6 @ C, 10/11 @ L1
Championship & League One - like Owls in a huge empty barn.
Wednesday were in the Premiership when BHA started the Withdean era just before Y2k. We joined them in div1 (Championship) a couple of seasons into the new century.
02/3 - that term Steve Coppell was gaffer, 7/12/02 A 1-1. 21/4/03 H 1-1. B'ton finished 23rd 45pt, Sheff Wed 22nd 46pt - both clubs relegated.
03/4 - in div2, 20/9/03 H 2-0 - super sure shots. Then Mark McGhee came in, 27/3/04 A 2-1 - big ground, small time. B'ton were 4th and promoted via p-os, Sheff Wed got 16th 53pt.
05/6 - the Hillsborough outfit met with us again in the Championship, 24/10/05 A 1-1 - pinched a point. 17/4/06 H 0-2 - sent us down. B'ton 24th rel, Sheff Wed 19th 52pt.
10/11 - It was League1 under Gus Poyet. At theirs we lost 1-0 in August. At ours we won 2-0 in April. We won the title but Owls were only 15th.
C21 total EFL record: P18 . W4 D4 L1 . F12 A6 . W1 D3 L5 . F6 A11 . Pt22 GD+1

Championship record from '99/00 to 18/19; (19 @ Prem), 17, 20, 22, (16, 5 @ L1), 19, 9, 16, 12, 22, (15, 2 @ L1), 18, 16, 13, 6, 4, 15, 12
Prem: relegated - '00. Champ's: best = 4th '17, worst = 22nd '03 & '10, p-os - '16 & '17, relegated - '03 & '10. L1: promo - '05 & '12
SHEFFIELD WEDNESDAYwere one of the original 22 clubs to play in the new Premier League of 1992.
PAST Managers; Danny Wilson (1998-2000), Paul Jewell (2000-1), Peter Shreeves (2001), Terry Yorath (2001-2), Chris Turner (2002-4), Paul Sturrock (2004-6), Brian Laws (2006-9), Alan Irvine (2010-11), Gary Megson (2011-12), Dave Jones (2012-14), Stuart Gray (2014-15), Carlos Carvalhal (2015-18), Jos Luhukay (2018-19), Steve Bruce (2019)

Background - In '06/7 Owls were 9th in the Championship. However in '07/8 they only beat the threatened drop when results went to the wire but fortunately their way, on the traditional final Sunday. Incidentally their nickname originates from playing at Owlerton, which was swallowed up by Sheffield's conurbation nearly a century ago. Place names are inextricably linked to Football clubs and create a bond. Come time to move, we move - from level to level or place to place.
Eventually Albion did relocate and our stadium did amalgamate with a wider community, just like at Hillsborough in a very different time. In '08/9 they were mid table and we'll meet again one day. Yeah, sooner than you think coz in '9/10 Owls were relegated from the Championship. We can thank Palace for that in a last day nail biter. For '11/12 they done Sheff Utd to auto-promo. Wednesday reached Champ's p-os in 15/16 & 16/17. At end of 18/19 Owls were again midtable but city rivals Blades went up.

STOKE Back to Top
CHAMP record from 11/12 to 18/19; (14, 13, 9, 9, 9, 13, 19 @ PREM), 16. * * * Prem Ave = 12th (7yrs), Top ten - 3 times. Relegated - 17/18.
STATUS; having gained a Prem place in 2008, Potters established as a middle of the road outfit. Second-Season Syndrome: 08/9 - 12th then 09/10 - 11th.
MANAGER; Nathan Jones (2019), previously Gary Rowett (2018), Paul Lambert (2018), Mark Hughes (2013-18)
17/18 - P38 W7 D12 L19 F35 A68 GD-33 Pt33 Po19. Wins = 18.4%, Draws = 31.5%, Loss = 50% - Lambert & Hughes.
16/17 - P38 W11 D11 L16 F41 A56 GD-15 Pt44 Po13 Wins = 28.9%, Draws = 28.9%, Loss = 42.1% - Mark Hughes.
Hughes was straight down the middle in terms of where his team finished in the Premier League, since the days of similarly mediocre Tony Pulis.
MH POTTERS RECORD; to Aug 2017 - P175 W65 D43 L67 Wins = 37.1%

FALMER years - 17/18 @ Prem
17/18 - Prem under Chris Hughton, at home in Nov we drew 2-2. Away in Feb we drew 1-1. BHA 15th 40pt, SC 19th 33pt relegated
PREM; P2 . W0 D1 L0 . F2 A2 . W0 D1 L0 . F1 A1 . Pt2 GD0

WITHDEAN era - '01/2 @ L1, '02/3, '04/5, '05/6 @ Champ's
League One & Championship - to think they only made it via League1 play-offs.
Potters fell to third tier at the Britannia as Albion completed a season at Gillingham. We met in '01/2 for div2 (L1), then '02/3 thru '05/6 in the Championship:
'01/2 - saw Micky Adams start off; 18/9/01 H 1-0. Then Peter Taylor continued, 1/3/02 A 3-1. B'ton 1st 90pt promoted, Stoke City 5th 80pt and won p-os.
'02/3 - Martin Hinshelwood was boss in div1 (C); 17/9/02 H 1-2. Later Steve Coppell took charge, 5/3/03 A 1-0. B'ton 23rd 45pt rel, Stoke 21st 50pt.
'04/5 - Mark McGhee came in; 17/12/04 H 0-1 - bah, humbug, festive gloom. 5/3/05 A 2-0 - two pennies Brit image. B'ton 20th 51pt, Stoke 12th 61pt.
'05/6 - BHA up against it; 5/11/05 A 3-1 - conceded & fell apart. 30/4/06 H 1-5 - unmotivated, unprofessional, uncaring. B'ton 24th rel, City 13th 58pt - who really cared?
C21 total EFL record; P8 . W1 D0 L3 . F3 A8 . W0 D0 L4 . F1 A9 . Pt3 GD-13

CITY PREM record from '99/00 to 18/19; (6, 5, 5 @ L1), (21, 11, 12, 13, 8, 2 @ Champ's), 12, 11, 13, 14, 13, 9, 9, 9, 13, 19, (16 @ C).
PREM: Best = 9th (3 times), Worst = 19th '18, Ave = 12th (10yrs). Top ten - 3 times from 10yrs ('14, '15, '16). Relegated - '18. Champ's: promo - '08, L1: promo - '02
PAST Managers; Gudjon Thordarson (1999-2002), Steve Cotterill (2002), Tony Pulis (2002-5), Johan Boskamp (2005-6), Tony Pulis (2006-13), Paul Lambert (2018), Mark Hughes (2013-18), Gary Rowett (2018)
FA CUP; finalists '11. LEAGUE CUP; finalists - not in the Prem era. LEAGUE TROPHY; winners '92 & '00. C21 EUROPE; EL finals - nq.

C21 info - in '06/7 with some proper dosh behind fired-up Potters, they got to 8th and promise of better. Look we hate 'em really, especially as somehow they went up from the Champ's in '07/8. They survived Prem seasons of '08/9 and did better in '9/10. But we still hoped to meet again, later perhaps rather than sooner - apart from FA Cup. In '10/11 they were mid table. And were hoping to stay in the top ten after 15/16. But it went tits up in 17/18 as Potters cracked and dropped into the Champ's. At end of 18/19 City were lower midtable of lev2.

SWANSEA Back to Top
CHAMP record from 11/12 to 18/19; (11, 9, 12, 8, 12, 15, 18 @ PREM), 10. * * * Prem: Ave = 12th (7yrs), Top ten - 2 times. Stayed up - '17, Relegated - '18.
STATUS; Swans rose into the elite during 2011 and survived as a middle-order outfit. Second-Season Syndrome: 11/12 - 11th then 12/13 - 9th.
MANAGER; Steve Cooper (2019), previously Graham Potter (2018-19), Carlos Carvalhal (2017-18), Paul Clement (2017)
17/18 - P38 W8 D9 L21 F28 A56 GD-28 Pt33 Po18. Wins = 21%, Draws = 23.6%, Loss = 55.2% - Carvalhal & Clement.
16/17 - P38 W12 D5 L21 F45 A70 GD-25 Pt41 Po15, Wins = 31.5%, Draws = 13.1%, Loss = 55.2% - Paul Clement.
Clement kept the Welsh side in the Premier League following any number of short-term managerial appointments during the last six years.
PC SWANS RECORD; to Aug 2017 - P20 W9 D2 L9. Wins = 45%
EUROPA LEAGUE; 13/14 - last 32.

FALMER years - 17/18 @ Prem
17/18 - Prem under Chris Hughton, away in Nov we won 0-1. At home in Feb we won 4-1. BHA 15th 40pt, SC 18th 33pt Relegated
PREM; P2 . W1 D0 L0 . F4 A1 . W1 D0 L0 . F1 A0 . Pt6 GD+4

WITHDEAN era - '99/00 @ L2, '06/7, '07/8 @ L1
Leagues Two & One - ok, they know they are.
'99/'00 - Swansea City won old div3 (L2) in 2000 and Brighton failed to make play-offs in Micky Adams great Withdean era revival.
In Wales during December 1999 B'ton lost 2-0. On April fools day Y2k we shared points in a 1-1 draw at Tongdean Lane.
'06/7 - for one reason or another, paths didn't cross until 2006 after clubs were both in League1. In December of '06 Albion got a 3-2 win at home when managed by Dean Wilkins. At end of April '07 we went down to their brand new Morfa Stadium and er, went down 2-1. Both clubs missed play-offs, Swans only just but Seagulls by more miles than the M4.
'07/8 - next season, B'ton got a 0-0 draw in late Sept off junc45 park & ride. At end of season in May we lost 0-1 to runaway champs. Albion failed to make p-os again.
C21 EFL record: P6 . W1 D1 L1 . F4 A4 . W0 D1 L2 . F1 A4 . Pt4 GD-3

CITY Championship record from '99/00 to 18/19; (1 @ L2), (23 @ L1), (20, 21, 10, 3 @ L2), (6, 7, 1 @ L1), 8, 7, 3, (11, 9, 12, 8, 12, 15, 18 @ Prem), 10.
PREM: Best = 8th (14/15), Worst = 18th (17/18), Ave = 12th (7yrs), Top ten - twice (12/13 & 14/15), Stayed up - once in bottom six (16/17). Relegated - once (17/18). Champ's: promo - '11. L1: promo - '08, rel - '05. L2: promo - '00 & '05.
PAST Managers; John Hollins (1998-2001), Colin Addison (2001-2), Nick Cusack (2002), Brian Flynn (2002-4), Kenny Jackett (2004-7), Roberto Martinez (2007-9), Paulo Sousa (2009-10), Brendan Rodgers (2010-12), Michael Laudrup (2012-14), Garry Monk (2014-15), Alan Curtis (2015-16), Francesco Guidolin (2016), Bob Bradley (2016), Carlos Carvalhal (2017-18), Paul Clement (2017)
FA CUP; finalists - not in the Prem era. LEAGUE CUP; winners '13. LEAGUE TROPHY; winners '94 & '06. C21 EUROPE; EL finals - nq.

C21 info - before turn of the century, there had been some re-development at old Vetch Field, their town ground not far from Swansea Bay beaches. However plans to expand were washed up on a tide of back-yard objections, assorted flotsam from close neighbours and jetsam of an over-crowded built-up area. The City Council finally stepped into foaming shallows to offer a solution. A design for a 20,000 capacity venue to be sited further in-land was proposed, plus acreage and funds. Aspects of that iconic Stadium of Light in Sunderland were also to be inherited. This made for an impressive allegory by association, rather than just being next to distant Premiership wannabes in an alphabetical list of clubs.
Planning permission was granted at Morfa, where in an act of minority-sport desecration an athletics track was er, demolished - what, heaven forbid! Brighton fans in difference to their public image, can actually be considered ironical if so desired. Anyway the local authority spent 27 million pounds and got top-notch, translucent roofing as well on three sides - just like on Wearside.
Albion faithful were in the alien north stand, where invaders information is presented in modern English on notices, signs and the tannoy. If you get there early enough, 'Abertawe' can be read in large letters formed by each adjacent home block of Swans seating. Hey, they're bloody Welsh and want us to know they are...
In '9/10, City were just short of Championship play-offs. For '10/11 they won promotion to the Prem via play-offs. And still held a regular mid table slot in 15/16. Not bad for foreigners in English leagues. In 18/19 Swans were rebuilding, ending midtable back in the Championship.

WEST BROM Back to Top
CHAMP'S record from 11/12 to 18/19; (10, 8, 17, 13, 14, 10, 20 @ PREM), 4.
Prem: Ave = 13th (7yrs), Top ten - 3 times, Stayed up - once in bottom six. Relegated - 17/18.
STATUS; the midlands outfit had established in the Prem since 2011, to become a middle order club. Second-Season Syndrome: 10/11 - 11th, 11/12 - 10th.
MANAGER; Slaven Bilic (2019), previously James Shan (2019), Darren Moore (2018-19), Alan Pardew (2017-18), Tony Pulis (2015-17)
17/18 - P38 W6 D13 L19 F31 A56 GD-25 Pt31 Po20. Wins = 15.7%, Draws = 34.2%, Loss = 50% - Moore, Pardew & Pulis.
16/17 - P38 W12 D9 L17 F43 A51 GD-8 Pt45 Po10, Wins = 31.5%, Draws = 23.6%, Loss = 44.7% - Tony Pulis.
Pulis is the man who they cannot relegate. So he came on board to do a job after managerial problems in 2014 and so far so good until late 2017.
TP BAGGIES RECORD; to Aug 2017 - P107 W33 D32 L42. Wins = 30.8%

FALMER Years - 17/18 @ Prem. FA Cup - see FY tab, previous encounters.
17/18 - Prem under Chris Hughton, at home in Sept we won 3-1. Away in Jan we lost 2-0. BHA 15th 40pt, WBA 20th 31pt relegated.
PREM; P2 . W1 D0 L0 . F3 A1 . W0 D0 L1 . F0 A2 . Pt3 GD0

Withdean era - no meetings.
WBA PREM record from '99/00 to 18/19; (21, 6, 2 @ Champ's), 19, (2 @ C), 17, 19, (4, 1 @ Champ's), 20, (2 @ Champ's), 11, 10, 8, 17, 13, 14, 10, 20, (4 @ C).
PREM Best = 8th (12/13), Worst = 20th (08/9, 17/8), Ave = 15th (12yrs).
Top ten - 3 times from 12yrs, Stayed up - twice in bottom six ('05, '14), Relegated - 4 times ('03, '06, '09, '18). Champ's: promo - '02, '04, '08, '10, p-os - '19.
PAST Managers; Brian Little (1999-2000), Gary Megson (2000-4), Bryan Robson (2004-6), Tony Mowbray (2006-9), Roberto Di Matteo (2009-11), Roy Hodgson (2011-12), Steve Clarke (2012-14), Pepe Mel (2014), Alan Irvine (2014), Tony Pulis (2015-17), Alan Pardew (2017-18), Darren Moore (2018-19), James Shan (2019)
FA Cup, LEAGUE Cup, EUROPE; not qualified for finals in the Prem era.

Footnote: WBA reached Champ's playoff s-fs in 18/19.

WIGAN Back to Top
Championship record from 11/12 to 18/19; (15, 18 @ Prem), (5, 23 @ Champ's), (1 @ L1), (23 @ C), (1 @ L1), 18.
Prem: relegated - '13. Champ's: relegated - '15 & '17. L1: promo - '16 & '18
STATUS; one time elite members, the northwest outfit merely has aspirations to regain to top tier.
MANAGER; Paul Cook (2017)

FALMER years; 13/14, 14/15, 16/17 @ Champ's
13/14 - under Oscar Garcia: we won 0-1 at the DW in Nov. But lost 1-2 at the Amex in Feb. BHA 6th 72pt p-os, WA 5th 73pt.
14/15 - under Sami Hyypia we won at ours 1-0 in Nov. With Chris Hughton we lost 2-1 at theirs in April. Albion 20th 47pt, Latics 23rd 39pt.
16/17 - away in Oct we won 0-1. At home in Apr we won 2-1 BHA 2nd 93pt promoted, WA 23rd 42pt relegated
Champ's record: P6 . W2 D0 L1 . F4 A3 . W2 D0 L1 . F3 A2 . Pt9 GD+2

WITHDEAN era; '01/2 @ L1, '04/5 @ Champ's
Championship & League One - one man's dream, not many takers.
Latics won div3 (L2) when Albion waved goodbye to the Goldstone Ground in 1997. They waited in the third tier (L1) for us to catch up.
01/2 - in div2, Micky Adams was pushing on; 18/8/01 H 2-1. Peter Taylor took over as boss, 12/1/02 A 0-3. B'ton 1st, Wigan Athletic 10th 64pt.
04/5 - we met again in the Championship under Mark McGhee; 21/8/04 A 3-0 - woefully worked over. 15/3/05 H 2-4 - beat inside five minutes. B'ton somehow reached 20th, Wigan Ath 2nd 87pt promoted.
C21 total EFL record: P10 . W3 D0 L2 . F8 A8 . W2 D0 L3 . F3 A8 . Pt15 GD-5

PREM record from '99/00 to 18/19; (4, 6, 10, 1 @ L1), (7, 2 @ Champ's), 10, 17, 14, 11, 16, 16, 15, 18, (5, 23 @ Champ's), (1 @ L1), (23 @ C), (1 @ L1), (18 @ C)
Prem: best = 10th '06, worst = 18th '13, top ten - once '06, stayed up - 4 times '07, '10, '11, '12, relegated - '13.
Champ's: promo - '05, rel - '15 & '17. L1: promo - '03, '16 & '18
PAST Managers; John Benson (1999-2000), Bruce Rioch (2000-1), Steve Bruce (2001), Paul Jewell (2001-7), Chris Hutchings (2007), Steve Bruce (2007-9), Roberto Martinez (2009-13), Owen Coyle (2013), Uwe Rosler (2013-14), Malky Mackay (2014-15), Gary Caldwell (2015-16), Warren Joyce (2016-17), Graham Barrow (2017), Paul Cook (2017)
FA CUP; winners - 12/13. LEAGUE CUP; finalists - 05/06

Info - Wigan Athletic did survive in the Prem. The peception was they'd always struggle but in '05/6 were 10th. Then of course second seasonitis crashed in and for '06/7, only held on to elite status by goal difference. But during the following 3 year period '07/8 thru '9/10, Latics were several points clear of the drop zone - so up yours, underfunded pretenders from the Championship. At very end of '10/11 they repeated the great escape by getting three away points from their closing fixture. In '12/13 luck finally ran out for continued existence in the Prem. Then they dropped into L1 before returning to the Champ's in 16/17 - only to be relegated straight away. But yo-yo'd up again in 17/18. At end of 18/19 Latics held a lower order berth.

 Back to Top

LEAGUE ONE Back to Top

League ONE record from 11/12 to 18/19; (14, 18, 15, 17, 4, 13, 1 @ L2), 14. * * * Promo - '18 L2
STATUS; a name in association football from early professional days of yore and reborn in the 21st century.
MANAGER; John Coleman (2014)
Falmer years - no meetings.
Withdean era - no meetings.

League Two record from 03/4 to 18/19; (10, 10, 1 @ Conf), 20, 17, 16, 15, 5, 14, 18, 15, 17, 4, 13, 1, (14 @ L1)
EFL; best = 14th L1 '19, worst = 10th Cn '04 & '05, promo - '06 Cn, '18 L2, p-os - '11 & '16 L2
PAST Managers; John Coleman (1999-2012), Paul Cook (2012), Leam Richardson (2012-3), James Beattie (2013-14), Paul Stephenson (2014), John Coleman (2014)

Info - old sixties div4 side Stanley, finally returned to pro football in 2006 after being Conference champions. They'd won the Unibond Premier in 2003. Accrington rose again, from the Lancashire Combination way back in 1970. The small Lancs outfit reached L2 playoffs in 2011 & 2016 & Stanley were L2 champions in 17/18. At end of 18/19 they got to L1 midtable.

League One record from 11/12 to 18/19; (5, 15, 20, 24 @ Champ's), 22, (7 @ L2), 12, 10. * * * Champ's: p-os - '12, relegated - '15. L1: rel - '16. L2: promo - '17
STATUS; yet another northwest club with history from days of yore. Tasted the Prem but very cold coastal fare there now.
MANAGER; Simon Grayson (2019), previously Terry McPhillips (2018-19), Gary Bowyer (2016-18)

FALMER years; 11/12, 12/13, 13/14, 14/15 @ Champ's
11/12 - under Gus Poyet; at the Amex it was 2-2 in August. At Bloomfield Road we lost 3-1 in March. BHA, 10th 66pt. Blackpool, 5th 75pt.
12/13 - up at theirs in October we drew 1-1. At ours we won 6-1 in April. BHA 4th 75pt p-os. Pool 15th 59pt.
13/14 - under Oscar Garcia; we went away and won 0-1 just before New Year. At home we drew 1-1 in April. BHA 6th 72pt p-os, Pool 20th 46pt.
14/15 - campaign with Sami Hyypia in charge; we drew 0-0 at the Amex in Sept. Chris Hughton as boss; we lost 1-0 up there in January. Albion 20th 47pt, Tangerines 24th 26pt - relegated.
Champ's record: P8 . W1 D3 L0 . F9 A4 . W1 D1 L2 . F3 A5 . Pt10 GD+3

WITHDEAN era; '00/1 @ L2, '01/2, '03/4, '06/7 @ L1
Leagues One & Two - towering to old heights.
Seasiders were usually found in div2 during those seasons when BHA became homeless, before taking up 'temporary' residence at Withdean.
00/1 - Lancs in Sept the punch-line was; BHA won 0-2, to help restore Micky Adams credibility - after losing three in four div3 fixtures, at start of a what became a promotion campaign. At ours in Feb we won 1-0. Blackpool went on to join us in div2 for the next year, from 7th place thru play-offs. B'ton = champions.
01/2 - the following term we won 4-0 at home in August and under Peter Taylor drew 2-2 away, in that stupid fixture squeezed between Xmas and New Year. B'ton took a successive title, while B'pool finished 16th on 56 pts.
03/4 - back in League1 again, at W'dean in Oct we won 3-0 - beautiful and brilliant. Under Mark McGhee, Albion lost 3-1 in April at Bloomfield Rd - blitzed by the beach. B'ton went up via a Millennium Stad victory but B'pool only made 14th on 59pts.
06/7 - the next meeting was again in Oct when Dean Wilkins W'dean lg1 outfit lost 0-3. In March it remained 0-0 in chilly Morecambe Bay. Northern seasiders went up to the Championship via p-os, southern softies slumped to 18th.
C21 total EFL record: P16 . W4 D3 L1 . F17 A7 . W2 D3 L3 . F8 A10 . Pt24 GD+8

Championship record from '99/00 to 18/19; (22 @ L1), (7 @ L2), (16, 13, 14, 16, 19, 3 @ L1), 19, 16, 6, (19 @ Prem), 5, 15, 20, 24, (22 @ L1), (7 @ L2), (12, 10 @ L1)
Prem: 19th (1yr), relegated - '11. Champ's: promo - '10, p-os - '12, relegated - '15. L1: promo - '07, rel - '00 & '16. L2: promo - '01 & '17
PAST Managers; Nigel Worthington (1997-9), Steve McMahon (2000-4), Colin Hendry (2004-5), Simon Grayson (2005-8), Ian Holloway (2008-12), Michael Appleton (2012), Paul Ince (2012-14), Barry Ferguson (2014), Jose Riga (2014), Lee Clark (2015), Neil McDonald (2015-16), Gary Bowyer (2016-18), Terry McPhilips (2018-19)
EFL Trophy; winners - 01/02, 03/04

Info - filling up with readily available, once cheap but possibly dodgy supermarket fuel, for an away trip via the M6, might have been detrimental to revs per minute, match-day budget, getting all the way there and also BBC Lancs listening figures. And that is not to say some stranded southern victims couldn't enjoy Radio Sussex as tanks, pint glasses and wallets were subsequently emptied in alternative surroundings. But guess what - yeah, off up north again, to Blackpool. At risk of boring you with a tenuous historical connection, there were other fuel problems of an opposite, insufficient capacity variety during September 2000 when Brighton visited Bloomfield Road for a div3 (L2) clash. It happened to be a night fixture and so, full drama of inevitably crawling up rush-hour motorways, also had that draining effect but probably more so on the psyche. Petrol could be found in some rural locations that evening and Albion travelling hordes homed in on a 'super' station near Oxford, flooding their forecourt to gather enough supplies for return trips to Sussex. In those days Bloomfield Road was in early stages of a makeover and where away support was allocated, there used to be a covered terrace. On its tangerine roof in huge dark lettering, Coucher & Shaw Solicitors stood out right down the length of Seasiders' pitch. Brighton fans might wonder if said firm handled any legal implications of completion, for turning a N-W coasts answer to constricted Sussex-by-the-sea sites into a pukka stadium. Building their ground to twenty first century standards had however, become excessively protracted. Almost like getting a government department to recognise squatters rights, in lieu of much delayed, proper registration-of-title for BHA at Falmer's foreign field.
In '08/9 fuel was plentiful but very expensive in comparison to even a single season before. Perhaps Blackpool's stay in the Championhip would further delay a 600 mile round-trip until those Blue and Tangerine promotion and relegation issues were resolved for the north-south divide. In '9/10, BHA were stuck in L1 with Falmer being built. Meanwhile Blackpool got to a Champs p-o final. They lasted a season in the Prem but went down on the very last day of '10/11 in a nail biting finish to the Tangerine Dream. Much worse was to come as they'd dropped into L2 for '16/17 - but just got into p-os and won the final! At end of 18/19 Seasiders just finished inside L1 top ten.

BOLTON Back to Top
CHAMPionship record from 11/12 to 18/19; (18 @ Prem), 7, 14, 18, 24, (2 @ L1), 21, 23. * * * Prem: relegated - '12. Champ's - relegated - '16 & '19. L1: promo - '17
STATUS; a one time Prem outfit as recently as 2012, Wanderers aim to reach & maintain at least a level two placing.
MANAGER; Phil Parkinson (2016)

FALMER years; 12/13, 13/14, 14/15, 15/16 @ Championship
12/13 - under Gus Poyet; at the Amex in November we drew 1-1. At the Reebok we lost 1-0 in March. BHA 4th 75pt. BW 7th 68pt.
13/14 - under Oscar Garcia; at ours in Sept we won 3-1. At theirs in March we won 0-2. BHA 6th 72pt, Bolton 14th 59pt.
14/15 - with Sami Hyypia; we won 2-1 at Falmer in Aug. Under Chris Hughton at the Macron we lost 1-0 in Feb. Albion 20th 47pt, Wanderers 18th 51pt.
15/16 - at theirs in Sept we drew 2-2. At ours we won 3-2 in Feb. Albion 3rd 89pt, Trotters 24th 30pt - relegated.
Champ's: P8 . W3 D1 L0 F9 A5 . W1 D1 L2 F4 A4 . Pt14 GD+4

Withdean era - no meetings.
PREM record from '99/00 to 18/19; (6, 3 @ Champ's), 16, 17, 8, 6, 8, 7, 16, 13, 14, 14, 18, (7, 14, 18, 24 @ Champ's), (2 @ L1), (21, 23 @ Champ's)
Prem: top ten - 4 times from eleven years, 3 times in bottom six, relegated - '12. Champ's: promo - '01, rel - '16, '19. L1: promo - '17
PAST Managers; San Allardyce (1999-007), Sammy Lee (2007), Gary Megson (2007-9), Owen Coyle (2009-12), Dougie Freedman (2012-14), Neil Lennon (2014-16), Jimmy Phillips (2016), Phil Parkinson (2016)
LEAGUE CUP; finalists - 03/04

Note - Wanderers fell out of the Premiership on the last afternoon of '11/12 season after spending the last decade there. But worse was to come with relegation to League One at end of 15/16. They regained lev2 status when L1 runners-up in 16/17 - just about retaining that in 17/18. At end of 18/19 BW dropped into third tier once more. They started in L1 with a -12pt deduction for EFL irregularities.

League ONE record from 11/12 to 18/19; (18, 7 @ L2), 11, 7, 5, 5, 13, 15. * * * promo - '13 L2, p-os - '16 & '17 L1
STATUS; falling into non-league was a wake up call for the provincial Bristol club, usually second best to City anyway.
MANAGER; Graham Coughlan (2019), previously Darrell Clarke (2014-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '07/8, '08/9, '09/10, '10/11 @ L1
League One - set on a course for better things.
Brighton first played Rovers, during seasons covered by this archive, in 1st rounds of the League Cup of 2003 under Steve Coppell and 2004 led by Mark McGhee.
07/8 - In L1 Bristol R were an October fixture at Tongdean Lane and drew 0-0 with Dean Wilkins team. They'd come up from Lg2 previously and hoped to re-establish at higher level. At their old place in April, we won 0-2. Rovers duly stayed in the div but Brighton just missed p-o participation. The Mem Stad was due for reconstruction but got credit crunched instead.
08/9 - for L1 they were the first outfit at the Seagulls nest in Olympic August. We shared points at 1-1 in a photo finish watched by a returning Micky Adams. He wasn't manager but Russell Slade was, when we went there in April and won 1-2. Eventually they were 11th, we got 16th.
9/10 - we went to theirs in sunny September for a 1-1 draw. Gus Poyet was boss in sunnier April at W'dean for 2-1 victory. Albion finished 13th 59pts in L1, while Pirates plundered 11th 62pts.
10/11 - under GP at our place in Nov, we drew 2-2. At the Mem we won 2-4 in Feb. Albion were L1 champions but Rovers went down to L2 from 22nd place.
C21 EFL record: P8 . W1 D3 L0 . F5 A4 . W3 D1 L0 . F9 A4 . Pt16 GD+6

FL L2 record from '99/00 to 18/19; (7, 21 @ L1), 23, 20, 15, 12, 12, 6, (16, 11, 11, 22 @ L1), 13, 14, 23, (2 @ Conf), 3, (10, 13, 15 @ L1)
EFL: best = 7th L1 '00, worst = 2nd Cn '15, promo - '07 & '16 L2, '15 Cn, rel - '01 & '11 L1, '14 L2
PAST Managers; Ian Holloway (1996-2001), Garry Thompson (2001-2), Gerry Francis (2001), Ray Graydon (2002-4), Ian Atkins (2004-5), Paul Trollope (2005-10), Dave Penney (2011), Paul Buckle (2011-12), Mark McGhee (2012), John Ward (2013), Darrell Clarke (2014-18)
EFL Trophy; finalist - 06/07

Background - Rovers were a regular div2 outfit before and at turn of the 21st century, when Albion were also on the up. We swapped divisions in 2001 as they were on a downward spiral, while we were upward. Rovers once flirted with Conference football but managed to beat a second drop in 2003, just as Albion came down from div1.
They hung around in lower reaches until getting a shot at play-offs in 2007. Rovers also made a JPT final, beating rivals City for southern area representatives. Extensive redevelopment plans as well as that televised 2008 FA Cup run surely helped with raising the club's profile.
In '13/14 Rovers were relegated from the FL into non-league. But bounced straight back - twice, to be in L1 for 16/17. At end of 18/19 Pirates were midtable.

BURTON Back to Top
League ONE record from 11/12 to 18/19; (17, 4, 6, 1 @ L2), (2 @ L1), (20, 23 @ C), 9. * * * Champ's: relegated - '18. L1: promo - '16. L2: promo - '15
STATUS; a non-league club until 2009 and established in FL as high as level2 but perhaps lower league is more appropriate.
MANAGER; Nigel Clough (2015)

FALMER years - '16/17 @ Championship
EFL Cup - see Falmer Years, previous encounters.
16/17 - under Chris Hughton; away in Sept we won 0-1. At home in Feb we won 4-1 BHA 2nd 93pt promoted, BA 20th 52pt
Champ's: P2 . W1 D0 L0 F4 A1 . W1 D0 L0 F1 A0 . Pt 6 GD+3

Withdean era - no meetings.
FL L2 record from '02/3 to 18/19; (16, 14, 16, 9, 6, 5, 1 @ Conf), 13, 19, 17, 4, 6, 1, (2 @ L1), (20, 23 @ C), (9 @ L1)
EFL: best = 20th C '17, worst = 16th Cn '03 & '05, p-os - '13 & '14 L2, promo - '09 Cn, '15 L2, '16 L1, relegation - '18 C
PAST Managers; Nigel Clough (1998-2009), Roy McFarland (2009), Paul Peschisolido (2009-11), Gary Rowett (2012-14), Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink ((2014-15), Nigel Clough (2015)

Info - Burton were a Conference club from '02/3 until winning the non-league title (Blue Square Prem) in '08/9. They reached L2 play-off s-f in '12/13 & '13/14. Then successive promotions in '14/15 & '15/16. But returned to L1 from the Champ's after 17/18, being a top ten outfit there in 18/19.

BURY Back to Top
League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; (14, 22 @ L1), 12, 3 @ L2, (14, 19, 24 @ L1), 2. * * * promo - '15 & '19 L2, relegation - '13 & '18 L1
STATUS; a regular lower league outfit this century.
MANAGER; Paul Wilkinson (2019), previously Ryan Lowe (2018-19), Chris Lucketti (2017-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '01/2 @ L1
League One - used to be Man Utd squads 'practice' pitch.
Believe it or not, they were movers and Shakers in div1 (Championship) while BHA struggled in div3 (League Two) at Gillingham, pre-Withdean era. Brighton eventually escaped in 2001 when Bury had fallen back down a division.
01/2 - during Peter Taylor's stewardship, div2 results; 1/12/01 A 2-0, 16/3/02 H 2-1. B'ton were promoted again as champions, while Bury got relegated - 21st 44pts.
C21 EFL record: P2 . W1 D0 L0 . F2 A0 . W1 D0 L0 . F2 A1 . Pt6 GD+3

EFL L2 record from '99/00 to 18/19; (15, 16, 22 @ L1), 7, 12, 17, 19, 21, 13, 4, 9, 2, (14, 22 @ L1), 12, 3, (14, 19, 24 @ L1), 2
EFL: best = 14th L1 '12 & '16, worst = 21st L2 '07, promo - '11, '15, '19 L2, p-os - '03, '09 L2, rel - '02, '13, '18 L1
PAST Managers; Andy Preece (1999-2003), Graham Barrow (2003-5), Chris Casper (2005-8), Alan Knill (2008-11), Richie Barker (2011-12), Kevin Blackwell (2013), David Flitcroft (2013-16), Lee Clark (2017), Ryan Lowe (2017), Chris Lucketti (2017-18), Ryan Lowe (2018-19)

Info - Bury went into Administration in '01/2 but actually made p-os for div3 in '02/3. In '05/6 the Gigg Lane fans were left mighty relieved when surviving possible relegation to the Conference on the last day. They went close to the L2 drop zone again in '06/7 but were almost mid table mediocre for '07/8. In '08/9 Bury bombed both auto-promo and a p-o final to stay in League2 once again. For '9/10, 9th placed Shakers tailed off yet again and missed tight p-o stages by merely 3pts. For '10/11 they finally got it right and were promoted to L1 as runners-up in L2. But Bury were soon relegated in '12/13. They bounced back for '15/16. Shakers dropped down again from L1 to L2 at end of 17/18 but deja vu, were promoted again in 18/19.

COVENTRY Back to Top
League One record from11/12 to 18/19; (23 @ Champ's), (15, 18, 17, 8, 23, @ L1), (6 @ L2), 8. * * * Champ's: relegated - '12. L1: relegated - '17. L2: promoted - '18
STATUS; City fell from great heights during this century and suffered much more than just playing problems on the pitch... becoming homeless.
MANAGER; Mark Robins (2017)

FALMER years; 11/12 @ Champ's
FA Cup - see Falmer Years, previous encounters.
11/12 - in the Championship under Gus Poyet; at the Amex in November we won 2-1. Then we lost 2-0 at the Ricoh on the last day of December. BHA, 10th 66pt. Coventry, 23rd 40pt - relegated to L1
Champ's record: P2. W1 D0 L0 . F2 A1 . W0 D0 L1 . F0 A2 . Pt3 GD-1

WITHDEAN era; '02/3, '04/5, '05/6 @ Champ's
Championship - ricochet around the drop zone.
Sky Blues had been a regular Prem club while BHA were homeless and seemingly helpless in div3. Albion first reached div1 (Championship) in '02/3 and all fixtures were played there versus Coventry to 2011.
02/3 - Martin Hinshelwood initially entertained City at W'dean; 13/8/02 H 0-0 - first home point. Steve Coppell replaced by time of visit to Highfield Rd; 11/1/03 A 0-0 - in a drop zone dog fight. B'ton wound up 23rd with 45pts and went down. C'try were 20th on 50pts.
04/5 - Mark McGhee was boss with orders to consolidate; early season 14/8/04 H 1-1 - conjured up a conclusion. Desperate run-in 2/4/05 A 2-1 - covert Refs controversy. B'ton snatched 20th and survival with 51pts. C'try made 19th on 52pts.
05/6 - it was more of the same; 17/9/05 H 2-2 - conceded howlers. 4/2/06 A 2-0 - threw towel in. B'ton dropped to Lg1 from bottom place. C'try were mid table 8th 63pt, too far from p-os to count.
C21 total Champ's record: P8. W1 D3 L0 . F5 A4 . W0 D1 L3 . F1 A6 . Pt7 GD-4

Championship record from '99/00 to 18/19; (14, 19 @ Prem), 11, 20, 12, 19, 8, 17, 21, 17, 19, 18, 23, (15, 18, 17, 8, 23, @ L1), (6 @ L2), (8 @ L1)
Prem: 2 years, relegated - 00/01. EFL: best = 11th Champ's '02, worst = 6th L2 '18, relegated - '12 C & '17 L1, promo - '18 L2
COVENTRY CITY were one of the original 22 clubs in the new Premier League of 1992.
PAST Managers; Gordon Strachan (1996-2000), Roland Nilsson (2001-2), Gary McAllister (2002-4), Eric Black (2004), Peter Reid (2004-5), Micky Adams (2005-7), Iain Dowie (2007-8), Chris Coleman (2008-10), Aidy Boothroyd (2010-11), Andy Thorn (2011-12), Mark Robins (2012-13), Steve Pressley (2013-15), Tony Mowbray (2015-16), Mark Venus (2016-17), Mark Robins (2017),
EFL Trophy; winner - 16/17

Background - some Brighton fans loved Micky Adams best, at least those of yer C21 Withdean experience. The early noughties were pleasurable then, bar an outstanding problem off the pitch. Providing a suitable modern ground, was a huge factor in overall thinking of a string of managers affected by our temporary infrastructure. Adams initially bought into the dream but baled out and was subsequently sent to Coventry. He entertained his old Board at the brand new, all singing, all dancing Ricoh Arena early in 2006 and we fans were in awe. But Adams was 'sacked' and waited for a job with prospects.
In 2007 Falmer got a green light. They say that pond-side Farm Shop will be making money hand over fist. Presumably our hands and an ex-Nimby's fist. Hey, they didn't have that facility in Sky Blue land around their concourse! Will they have the best stad one day in League1 like Leicester or Sheff Utd? In the noughties Cov were mostly not up to average at tier two. For '10/11 Sky Blues clouded over in 18th and 12mths later dropped into L1 for 12/13. The ground was sold and the club continued to decline, being relegated to L2 in 16/17 but then reaching p-os in 17/18 and promo back to L1. At end of 18/19 Sky Blues finished a way outside L1 p-os on pts.

League One record from 11/12 to 18/19; (24 @ Champ's), 1, (22 @ Champ's), 13, 21, (3 @ L2), 15, 6. * * * Relegated - '12 & '14 C, '16 L1, promo - '13 L1, '17 L2
STATUS; much trouble & strife during the noughties until reaching level2 but lower leagues seem to be their brief.
MANAGER; Darren Moore (2019), Grant McCann (2018-19), Darren Ferguson (2015-18)

FALMER years; 11/12, 13/14 @ Champ's
11/12 - under Gus Poyet; at the brand new Amex it was the first fixture, 6 Aug 2-1 and a climatic win. At the Keepmoat in March we drew 1-1. BHA, 10th 66pt. DR, 24th 36pt - relegated to L1
13/14 - under Oscar Garcia: at theirs we won 1-3 in November. At ours in Feb we won 1-0. BHA 6th 72pt p-os, DR 22nd 44pt - relegated.
Champ's record: P4 . W2 D0 L0 . F3 A1 . W1 D1 L0 . F4 A2. Pt10 GD+4

WITHDEAN era; '06/7, '07/8 @ L1
League One - what a difference a decade makes.
Following a parting of ways in 1998 when Doncaster Rovers fell from div3 into Conference footy, it was like turning back the clock on visiting old Belle Vue for a League1 fixture in November 2006.
06/7 - Rovers won 1-0 in what was one of their very last matches at Bawtry Road opposite the Racecourse. Next April at Withdean they completed a double, inflicting a 0-2 defeat on sorry Seagulls. In Dean Wilkins first year of management, changing times revealed life in football was full of serious ups and downs. Doncaster completed their L1 programme in mid table, while Brighton ended up 18th.
07/8 - the following season saw Albion travel to their brand spanking new Keepmoat Stadium and hold Donny to a 0-0 draw on an early December evening. At ours in March we got a vital 1-0 victory. Brighton fell short of play-offs, while Doncaster went up via a Wembley victory - well, well, well.
C21 total EFL record: P8 . W3 D0 L1 . F4 A3 . W1 D2 L1 . F4 A3. Pt11 GD+2

Championship record from '01/2 to 18/19; (4, 3 @ Conf), (1 @ L2), (10, 8, 11, 3 @ L1), 14, 12, 21, 24, (1 @ L1), 22, (13, 21 @ L1), (3 @ L2), (15, 6 @ L1)
EFL: best = 12th Champ's '10, worst = 4th Cn '02, promo - '03 Cn, '04 L2, '08 & '13 L1, '17 L2, relegated - '12 & '14 C, '16 L1
PAST Managers; Steve Wignall (1999-2001), Dave Penney (2002-6), Sean O'Driscoll (2006-11), Dean Saunders (2011-12), Brian Flynn (2012-13), Paul Dickov (2013-15), Darren Ferguson (2015-18), Grant McCann (2018-19)
EFL Trophy; winner - 06/07

Background - finishing behind Forest just outside play-off places in '05/6, may have been disappointing to Doncaster devoted. They had been used to success after five years in the Nationwide Conference, rebuilding self esteem. Brighton waved goodbye to them in 1998, when almost rock bottom, when only one went down - but enough already. In the same year that Yeovil finally made it up to FL status, Rovers took an opportunity to regain a lost league slot.
Conference play-offs of 2003 saw Dagenham & Redbridge vs. Doncaster for the 2nd promo spot, at Stoke's Britannia Stadium in the final. This game went on to extra time after D&R cancelled out an initial 0-2 advantage to Donny. Having been denied a part in League2 a year before, money was on Daggers again getting through. However, it was to be sudden death under golden goal, so rules & regs repeatedly caused de- & re-jection, when Rovers put the boot in ten minutes before northern red celebrations.
As a consequence Football League returned to ramshackle Belle Vue, which itself needed a certain level of improvement to operate as the Earth Stadium. If you went there, you might make a disconnection between those two symbolic words. Btw, Doncaster won League2 in 2005 while on a roll, hence those opening comments as above. Dag & Red meanwhile got a 'get out of jail' pardon to compete in League2 of '07/8.
In the Championship of '08/9 and '9/10, Dons finished in mid table. For '10/11 they beat the drop at 21st. In '12/13 Doncaster were L1 champs. But in '15/16 they'd dropped into L2, only to bounce back in 16/17 automatically. At end of 18/19 Rovers reached p-o s-fs.

League ONE record from 11/12 to 18/19; (1 @ Conf), (13, 4 @ L2), 10, 19, 4, 14, 11. * * * p-os - '17 L1. promo - '12 Cn, '14 L2
STATUS; very new to pro footy but desire to establish high in the pyramid as possible.
MANAGER; Joey Barton (2018), previously John Sheridan (2018), Uwe Rosler (2016-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.
Withdean era - no meetings.

EFL L2 record from 07/8 to 18/19: (1 @ Northern Prem), (x, 2 @ Conf N), (5, 1 @ Conf), 13, 4, (10, 19, 4, 14, 11 @ L1)
EFL: best = 4th L1 '17, worst = 5th Cn '11, promo - '12 Cn, '14 L2
PAST Managers; Tony Greenwood (2003-9), Micky Mellon (2009-2012), Graham Alexander (2012-15), Steve Pressley (2015-16), John Sheridan (2018), Uwe Rosler (2016-18),

Info - Town won the Blue Square Prem in 2012, scoring just over a ton of goals and in excess of 100 points. They won the L2 p-o final in '13/14 to cap a fantastic rise from lower non-league during the last decade. At end of 18/19 Town were settled in L1 mid table.

League ONE record from 11/12 to 18/19; (8, 1 @ L2), 17, 12, 9, 20, 17, 13. * * * Promo - '13 L2
STATUS; been up & down the pecking order this century in the 3 EFL divs. Probably a third tier outfit by default.
MANAGER; Steve Evans (2019), previously Mark Patterson (2019), Steve Lovell (2017-19)
Falmer Years - no league meetings.
League Cup - go to Falmer Years, previous encounters.

WITHDEAN era - '02/3, '04/5 @ Champ's, '06/7, '07/8, '09/10 @ L1
Championship & League One - Medway between the devil and deep blue.
Priestfield was the place where Brighton spent a couple of years immediately before returning to Sussex at Withdean in 1999. Having got from div3 to div1 (L2-C) in three seasons, Brighton fans were full of hope for a bright Falmer future and living the dream.
02/3 - Martin Hinshelwood was newly installed as Seagulls manager when Gills initially visited in September 2002. Albion woke up to the fact that the bar had been raised but only after a string of div1 defeats that summer and autumn. Gillingham showed what was required by gaining a 2-4 reversal and revealing severe B'ton deficiencies. Back at revamped Priestfield it got even worse by losing 3-0, although by then Steve Coppell held the hose and tried to salvage something from a March burnout amid season's ashes.
04/5 - two terms later Mark McGhee's B'ton were back in the Championship and both us and Gills were struggling. We went there first in Sept and bagged a 0-1 win. On Boxing Day a dramatic 2-1 victory was sealed by a late winner to send Tongdean Lane into festive celebration. At the death in May, Seagulls stayed up and Gills didn't. Unfortunately it couldn't last and BHA wasn't as yet big enough to keep tier two status.
06/7 - on relegation to League1, Brighton hosted a first home fixture against Gillingham winning 1-0. The reciprocal game was a misty Tuesday evening in February and Dean Wilkins 11 got home with the same 0-1 score. Each side finished in lower reaches of this division.
07/8 - the following season another Sept encounter saw B'ton done 1-0 up the Medway estuary. A rearranged postponed fixture in March saw Withdeanites go home happy from a 4-2 hammering. Gills went down on the last day, while we made 7th position ours.
9/10 - at W'dean in Oct we won 2-0 under Russ Slade. But away in Apr with Gus Poyet, we could only draw 1-1. BHA finished 13th with 59pts but Gills went down from 21st with 50pts on goal difference. They didn't win once away from home.
C21 EFL record: P10 . W4 D0 L1 . F11 A7 . W2 D1 L2 . F3 A5 . Pt19 GD+2

EFL L2 records from '99/00 to 18/19; (3 @ L1), (13, 12, 11, 21, 22 @ Champ's), (14, 16, 22 @ L1), 5, (21 @ L1), 8, 8, 1, (17, 12, 9, 20, 17, 13 @ L1)
EFL: best = 11th C '03, worst = 8th L2, promo - '00 L1, '09 & '13 L2, relegated - '05 C, '08 & '10 L1
PAST Managers; Peter Taylor (1999-2000), Andy Hessenthaler (2000-4), Stan Ternent (2004-5), Neale Cooper (2005), Ronnie Jepson (2005-7), Mark Stimson (2007-10), Andy Hessenthaler (2010-12), Martin Allen (2013), Peter Taylor (2014), Justin Edinburgh (2015-16), Adrian Pennock (2017), Steve Lovell (2017-19), Mark Patterson (2019)

Background - they'd been to W'dean twice before as Championship opposition and each outfit had one win apiece. They did for us in '02/3 when naive new boys Albion blundered badly. In '04/5 we turned those tables as Gills struggled all the way to the wire. On that last day under relegation threat, B'ton drew, Crewe won at home, while Gillingham went across to already sent-down Nott'm Forest to claim a point. Brighton wound up 20th with 51 pts, Crewe 21st on 50 pts and Gillingham 22nd on 50 pts, also with a big negative goal difference but inferior by just 1. So Gillingham shaded us to lg1 by a year and finished '05/6 at mediocre mid-table. Crewe also rejoined old adversaries and Forest too knew all about life in lower leagues. Time did tell as to the true quality of those teams a few of years further on. Before start of '06/7 campaign, City Ground big boys from alongside the Trent were firm favourites for table topping promotion. Our ex-landlords from Priestfield on lower reaches of the Medway, plus northern acquaintances from Alex Stadium up the junction, were both expected to compete very closely again - this time for those knock-out play-off places. To aim for it they shoulda scored lots of goals, rather than letting them in between their own posts. By '07/8 just staying in lg1 woulda been enough for Gillingham. In '08/9 they bobbed back from lg2 via play-offs. For '10/11 & '11/12, Gills just missed L2 p-o places in 8th but in '12/13 they won L2. For years on thru 17/18 & 18/19 they were mostly a lower order L1 outfit.

IPSWICH Back to Top
Championship record from 11/12 to 18/19; 15, 14, 9, 6, 7, 16, 12, 24. * * * p-os - '15, relegated - '19
STATUS; a once perenniel Championship club that never seemed able to turn ambition into reality.
MANAGER; Paul Lambert (2018), previously Paul Hurst (2018), Mick McCarthy (2012-18)

FALMER years; 11/12, 12/13, 13/14, 14/15, 15/16, 16/17 @ Champ's
11/12 - under Gus Poyet; at Portman Rd at beginning of October we lost 3-1. At the Amex in February we won 3-0. BHA, 10th 66pt. Ipswich, 15th 61pt.
12/13 - at ours in Oct we drew 1-1. At new year up their place we won 0-3. BHA 4th 75pt p-os. IT 14th 60pt.
13/14 - with Oscar Garcia as Head Coach; at Town we lost 2-0 in Sept. At the Amex we also lost 0-2 in March. BHA 6th 72pt p-os, IT 9th 68pt.
14/15 - under Sami Hyypia; we lost 2-0 at Portman Road in Sept. With Chris Hughton we won at Falmer 3-2 in Jan. Albion 20th 47pt, Town 6th 78pt (p-os)
15/16 - at theirs in Aug we won 2-3. At ours in Dec we lost 0-1. Albion 3rd 89pt p-os, Town 7th 69pt.
16/17 - away in Sept we drew 0-0. At home in Feb we drew 1-1. BHA 2nd 93pt promoted, IT 16th 55pt
Champ's record: P12 . W2 D2 L2 . F8 A7 . W2 D1 L3 . F7 A9 . Pt22 GD-1

WITHDEAN era; '02/3, '04/5, '05/6 @ Champ's
Championship - out on a second tier limb.
ipswich Town had been regular turn of the century div1 top5 and also once in the Prem. Brighton meanwhile endured depths of div3 at Gillingham before 1999, to then climb from Withdean constrictions. We then had three attempts to consolidate in the Championship during the noughties.
02/3 - Albion were up against it and got Steve Coppell to help. On a pre-Xmas night at Tongdean Lane; 10/12/02 H 1-1 - every point counted. Up Portman Rd for the run-in; 22/3/03 A 2-2 - still in with a shout. B'ton dropped out from 23rd, Ipswich Tn were 7th and missed p-os.
04/5 - we were back and Mark McGhee was boss. Over in Suffolk ; 27/11/04 A 1-0 - we got upset in Town. On the final day in Sussex; 8/5/05 H 1-1 - spring scenes of pure relief. B'ton attained 20th with 51pts and beat the drop. Ipswich were 3rd on 85pts and competed in p-os.
05/6 - it was a date with destiny, for both; 29/10/05 H 1-1 - lapsed before interval. 15/4/06 A 1-2 - won taking it to 'em. B'ton finished bottom, Ipswich Tn mid table 15th 56pt.
C21 total Champ's record: P18 . W2 D5 L2 . F11 A10 . W3 D2 L4 . F11 A13 . Pt22 GD-1

Championship records from '99/00 to 18/19; 3, (5, 18 @ Prem), 7, 5, 3, 15, 14, 8, 9, 15, 13, 15, 14, 9, 6, 7, 16, 12, 24
Prem: top six - 00/01, relegated - 01/2. Champs: best = 3rd '00 & '05, worst = 24 '19, promo - '00, p-os '04, '05, '15, rel - '19.
IPSWICH TOWN were one of the original 22 clubs in the new Premier League for 1992.
PAST Managers; George Burley (1994-2002), Joe Royle (2002-6), Jim Magilton (2006-9), Roy Keane (2009-11), Paul Jewell (2011-12), Mick McCarthy (2012-18), Paul Hurst (2018)

Info - in '06/7 Town were mid-table mediocrity and seemingly resigned to tier two footy for a while. Perhaps they had been playing above true level for a while. Then with a change of manager things picked up. In '07/8 Ipswich were just outside play-offs and for '08/9 top-ten, so were the good times back? Well for '9/10 under Roy not so Keane, Town were very mid table. In '10/11 they got to be 13th in the Championship. Thereafter making p-os only once (14/15) in years to 17/18. At end of 18/19 Town were relegated to L1.

LINCOLN Back to Top
League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; (17, 16, 14, 15, 13, 1 @ nat lg), 7, 1. * * * promo - '17 NL, '19 L2
STATUS; lower league regulars for first decade this century but dropped into non league before coming back with a big bang.
MANAGER; Danny Cowley (2016)
Falmer years - no league fixtures. FA Cup - see Falmer Years, previous encounters.

WITHDEAN era - '99/00, '00/01 @ L2
League Two - plenty of spuds up the bank.
Red Imps did once get to div2 (L1) when Albion were in their second year ground sharing at Gillingham. Micky Adams then came to our twin towns to keep the faith.
99/00 - in div3 (L2), 23/11/99 H 2-2. 18/3/00 A 1-3. B'ton 11th 67pt, L'oln 15th 59pt.
00/01 - in div3, 26/8/00 A 2-0. 10/4/01 H 2-0. B'ton 1st promoted, L'oln 18th 51pt.
C21 EFL record: P4 . W1 D1 L0 . F4 A2 . W1 D0 L1 . F3 A3 . Pt7 GD+2

EFL L2 record from '99/00 to 18/19; 15, 18, 22, 6, 7, 6, 7, 5, 15, 13, 20, 23, (17, 16, 14, 15, 13, 1 @ Conf), 7, 1
EFL: promo - '17 NL, '19 L2, p-os - '03, '04, '05, '06, '07, '18, rel - '11 L2
PAST Managers; John Reames (1998-2000), Phil Stant (2000-1), Alan Buckley (2001-2), Keith Alexander (2002-6), John Schofield (2006-7), Peter Jackson (2007-9), Chris Sutton (2009-10), Steve Tilson (2011-13), Gary Simpson (2013-14), Chris Moyses (2014-16), Danny Cowley (2016)
EFL Trophy winners 2018.

Info - City had a 'goal 2010' campaign running at Sincil Bank because they wanted to reach the Championship. But they missed promo from League2 p-os on more than one occasion and for '08/9 were merely mid table mediocrity. By '9/10 last time we looked, Imps got to a disappointing but safe 50pts in L2. For '10/11 they went down to the 'Conference' on the last day in 23rd place. In '11/12 thru 16/17 they played in the National League (Conf/Blue Square Prem). Red-imps beat Brighton in FAC4 of 2017 and were promoted back to League Two as champions. They straightaway got to L2 p-os in 17/18 & promoted as champions in 18/19.

MK DONS Back to Top
League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; (5, 8, 10, 2 @ L1), (23 @ Champ's), (12, 23 @ L1), 3. * * * promo - '15 L1, '19 L2, relegated - '16 C, '18 L1
STATUS; original franchise club exported from suburban outer London, who have known a serious few up & downs.
MANAGER; Paul Tisdale (2018), previously Dan Micciche (2018), Robbie Neilson (2016-18)

FALMER years - 15/16 @ Champ's. FA Cup - see Falmer Years, previous encounters.
15/16 - in the Championship under Chris Hughton; at the Amex in Nov we W 2-1. At stadium mk we W 1-2 in Mar. Albion 3rd 89pt p-os, Dons 23rd 39pt - rel.
Champ's record: P2 . W1 D0 L0 . F2 A1 . W1 D0 L0 . F2 A1 . Pt6 GD+2

WITHDEAN era - '08/9, '09/10, '10/11 @ L1
League One - are you Wombles in disguise?
No league meetings until 2008 in the Withdean era. Dons came up from League2 as champions in '07/8.
08/9 - In Dec with Micky Adams back, we got beat 2-4 in L1 at ours. We went to theirs and lost 2-0 under Russ Slade. He got us to 16th, they made p-o s-f.
9/10 - at W'dean in Oct, we lost 0-1 with Russ Slade in charge. On Mayday at stad:mk it was 0-0 under Gus Poyet. BHA = 13th 59pts, Dons = 12th 60pts.
10/11 - under Gus Poyet we finally won, 2-0 at W'dean in September. At theirs we lost 1-0 in Feb. B'ton got to be champs but 5th placed MKD lost out in p-o phases.
C21 total EFL record: P8 . W2 D0 L2 . F6 A6 . W1 D1 L2 . F2 A4 . Pt10 GD-2

EFL L1 record from '04/5 to 18/19; 20, 22, (4, 1 @ L2), 3, 12, 5, 5, 8, 10, 2, (23 @ Champ's), 12, 23, (3 @ L2)
EFL: best = 23rd C '16, worst = 4th L2 '07, promo - '08 & '19 L2, '15 L1, p-os - '07 L2, '09, '11, '12 L1, rel - '06 & '18 L1, '16 C.
PAST Managers; Danny Wilson (2004-6), Martin Allen (2006-7), Paul Ince (2007-8), Roberto Di Matteo (2008-9), Paul Ince (2009-10), Karl Robinson (2010-16), Richie Barker (2016), Robbie Neilson (2016-18), Dan Micciche (2018),
EFL Trophy; winners - 07/08

Background - the JP trophy, our lower leagues knock-out competition known affectionately as the paint pot, had a new name added to a list of infrequent visitors at Withdean when Milton Keynes Dons come to call in Nov 2006. Milton Keynes became a so-called 'new town', built on land that almost surrounded a village of self same name, due south of Northampton.
Everything was new and in the mid nineties they put down an artificial pitch, near one of those many roundabouts along lengthy Portway. Its purpose was to be the new National Hockey Stadium, accessible from arterial M1 and close to mainline Central station. In 2003 a new football team arrived from London that played in what was then the new Championship, so they grassed their surface to meet FL rules. Wimbledon FC had inconceivably 'moved' 65 miles via M25 and previously homeless Dons also carried baggage concerned with Administration.
By 2004 they had fallen to League1 and were then known as Milton Keynes Dons. Wimbledon was gone and forgotten, as a further drop to League2 for '07/8 season marked a place where only its ghost appeared. So 'new town' effectively got a new club, in a new league and one way or another, a new future. But they were on the up and got granted a new pitch to host league football to boot. Dons were eventually promoted to lev2 in 14/15 but went back to L1 for 16/17. They dropped into L2 at end of 17/18 but were promoted once again at end of 18/19.

OXFORD Back to Top
League ONE record from 11/12 to 18/19; (9, 9, 8, 13, 2 @ L2), 8, 16, 12. * * * promo - '16 L2
STATUS; a club that had known better standards of football prior to turn of the century. Lower league at best now.
MANAGER; Karl Robinson (2018)
Falmer years - no league fixtures.
League Cup - see Falmer Years, previous encounters.
Withdean era - no meetings.

EFL L2 record from '99/00 to 18/19; (20, 24 @ L1), 21, 8, 9, 15, 23, (2, 9, 7, 3 @ Conf), 12, 9, 9, 8, 13, 2, (8, 16, 12 @ L1)
EFL: best = 8th L1, worst = 9th conf, promo - '10 Cn & '16 L2, rel - '01 L1, '06 L2
PAST Managers; Micky Lewis (1999-2000), David Kemp (2000-1), Ian Atkins (2001-4), Graham Rix (2004), Ramon Diaz (2004-5), Brian Talbot (2005-6), Darren Patterson (2006-8), Jim Smith (2006-7), Chris Wilder (2008-13), Michael Appleton (2014-17), Pep Clotet (2017-18)
EFL Trophy; finalists - 15/16, 16/17

Info - while Albion struggled at gory Goldstone and gruesome Gillingham grounds, United were in div1 (Championship) of '96-'99 (17, 12, 23). We didn't meet U's at Withdean in the noughties coz BHA were promoted from div3 (L2) as Oxford went the other way in 2001 from div2 (L1). After many seasons at lowest tier, including a period playing non-league, Utd were eventually promoted back to L1 as runners-up in '15/16. At end of 18/19 U's made midtable.

League One record from 11/12 to 18/19; (18, 22 @ Champ's), 6, 9, 13, 11, 9, 7. * * * Relegated - '13 C, p-os - '14 L1
STATUS; an outfit forever hopeful of pushing boundaries in East Anglia and beyond. Time will tell - replay that loop!
MANAGER; Darren Ferguson (2019), previously Steve Evans (2018-19), Grant McCann (2016-18)

FALMER years; 11/12, 12/13 @ Champ's
11/12 - under Gus Poyet; we won at home 2-0 in August. We also won away 1-2 in January. BHA, 10th 66pt. PU, 18th 50pt.
12/13 - at ours in Nov we won 1-0. At theirs in April we drew 0-0. BHA 4th 75pt p-os. PU 22nd 54pt - relegated.
Champ's record: P4 . W2 D0 L0 . F3 A0 . W1 D1 L0 . F2 A1 . Pt10 GD+4

WITHDEAN era; '99/00 @ L2, '01/2, '03/4, '08/9, '10/11 @ L1
Leagues One & Two - gosh, they weren't so much tosh and apparently backed by plenty of dosh.
Peterboro Utd spent three terms in div3 (L2) from 1997, while Albion tried to find a new home to replace the old Goldstone.
99/00 - Micky Adams was trying to get his first revolution on the road in div3 2/10/99 A 0-0 at London Rd. Then 26/4/00 H 0-0 at W'dean. B'ton finished 11th 67pts, while P'bro Utd went up via p-os from 5th with 78pts. Adams gained direct promotion the following season.
01/2 - next up was div2 (L1) when Peter Taylor was boss - 21/11/01 H 1-1, 6/4/02 A 1-0. B'ton were promoted as champions, P'bro ended 17th on 55pts.
03/4 - after a year at tier two, back in League, Mark McGhee's first match was 1/11/03 A 2-2 - poshibly poached a point. The return on 17/4/04 H 1-0 - prob a piss-take pen. B'ton went on thru p-o stages from 4th and gained promotion again. Posh completed in 18th with 52pts.
08/9 - four years later in Oct we went to theirs and it was nil-nil during Adams second coming. At ours in Jan it went down 2-4 and tits up. United went up as runners-up, we only stayed up.
10/11 - at London Road under Gus Poyet, we won 0-3 in late October. At W'dean in Jan we won 3-1. Albion won the division while Posh also went up via p-o final victory.
C21 total EFL record: P14 . W4 D2 L1 . F10 A6 . W3 D4 L0 . F8 A3 . Pt27 GD+9

Championship records from '99/00 to 18/19; (5 @ L2), (12, 17, 11, 18, 23 @ L1), (9, 10, 2 @ L2), (2 @ L1), 24, (4 @ L1), 18, 22, (6, 9, 13, 11, 9, 7 @ L1)
EFL: best = 18th C '12, worst = 10th L2 '07, promo - '00 & '08 L2, '09 & '11 L1, rel - '10 & '13 C, '05 L1
PAST Managers; Barry Fry (1996-2005), Mark Wright (2005-6), Steve Bleasdale (2006), Keith Alexander (2006-7), Darren Ferguson (2007-9), Mark Cooper (2009-10), Jim Gannon (2010), Gary Johnson (2010-11), Darren Ferguson (2011-15), Dave Robertson (2015), Graham Westley (2015-16), Grant McCann (2016-18), Steve Evans (2018-19)
EFL Trophy; winner - 13/14

Info - in '04/5 United fell back to League2. They bumped around in the fourth tier for a couple of seasons, sometimes with thoughts of making play-offs. Peterboro had plans to upgrade their London Rd venue but it never seemed to get off the ground. Then money came in via a mega-bucks chairman and hey-ho, they suddenly want a new stadium built up the road. It seemed to turn things around on the pitch too. Posh went up from League2 in '07/8 and then again from Lg1 '08/9 with back-to-back promotions. But we know how tough it is in the Champ's for innocents abroad. In '9/10, Posh were easily relegated as bottom club. They bounced back immediately but hit the skids again in yo-yo fashion at end of '12/13, for years of tier3 mediocrity. At end of 18/19 Posh just failed by 1pt to reach L1 p-os.

League One record from 11/12 to 18/19; (22 @ Champs), 24, (13, 16, 6, 1 @ L2), 8, 4. * * * Relegated - '12 C, '13 L1, promo - '17 L2, p-os '16 L2, '19 L1
STATUS; once upon a time a big club but those days disappeared with harsh financial realities of this century.
MANAGER; Kenny Jackett (2017)

FALMER years; '11/12 @ Champ's
11/12 - in the Championship under Gus Poyet; travelled to Hants early doors 13/8/11 A 0-1 - massive win on road. At the Amex in March we won 2-0. BHA, 10th 66pt. Portsmouth, 22nd 40pt (-10pt admin) - relegated to L1.
Champ's record: P2 . W1 D0 L0 . F2 A0 . W1 D0 L0 . F1 A0 . Pt6 GD+3

WITHDEAN era; '02/3 @ Champ's
Championship - found a safe harbour from big guns.
Pompey seemed to somehow survive in div1 during Albion's blue period, when the Withdean era evolved from a homecoming via Priestfield - rather than at Fratton Park. Then it got better for both clubs. Yes folks we actually once played 'em during an excursion into div1 (Championship)
02/3 - Martin Hinshelwood's rookie BHA visited Frogmore Road; 31/8/02 (A) 4-2 - outplayed. Steve Coppell's eleven received Pompey at W'dean; 18/1/03 H 1-1 - held top outfit. B'ton made a fight of it but were 23rd and relegated on 45pts. Portsmouth went up as champions.
C21 total Champ's record: P4 . W1 D1 L0 . F3 A1 . W1 D0 L1 . F3 A4 . Pt7 GD+1

PREM records from '99/00 to 18/19; (18, 20, 17, 1 @ Champ's), 13, 16, 17, 9, 8, 14, 20, (16, 22 @ Champs), (24 @ L1), (13, 16, 6, 1 @ L2), (8, 4 @ L1)
Prem: best = 8th '08, worst = 20th '10, top ten - twice '07 & '08, stayed up - twice '05 & '06, relegated - '10. Champ's: promo - '03, rel - '12.
L1: p-os - '19, rel - '13. L2: promo - '17.
PAST Managers; Alan Ball (1998-9), Tony Pulis (2000), Steve Claridge (2000-1), Graham Rix (2001-2), Harry Redknapp (2002-4), Velimir Zajec (2004-5), Alain Perrin (2005), Harry Redknapp (2005-8), Tony Adams (2008-9), Paul Hart (2009), Avram Grant (2009-10), Steve Cotterill (2010-11), Michael Appleton (2011-12), Guy Whittingham (2012-13), Richie Barker (2013), Andy Awford (2014-15), Paul Cook (2015-17), Kenny Jackett (2017)
FA CUP; winners - 07/08, finalists - 09/10. FA Trophy; winners - 18/19

Info - Pompey played up in the Prem when many had 'em for the drop in '04/5 and '05/6. Harry Redknapp returned as manager and new Russian financial backing helped. They finished 17th and performed some sort of miracle escape act. In '06/7 and '07/8 Portsmouth consolidated in higher mid-table. There were mega-bucks plans to completely redevelop Fratton on land adjacent. Then there was even a waterfront proposal on reclaimed land in the dockyards. One way or another, something else will be built on the south coast as ambitious football clubs go for, er, broke. Well, it all came tumbling down anyway. Talk about mega debts, somebody was taking the p*$$ big time. In '9/10, Pompey were relegated from the Prem as bottom club with points deductions to boot. They didn't even keep their self respect. For '10/11 the Fratton Park mob were mid table in the Championship. They went t*t$ up in L1 by dropping straight thru to L2 in '12/13. It did get a little better by 16/17, with promotion back to L1 as champions, on GD! At end of 18/19 Pompey got to tier three p-o s-fs.

ROCHDALE Back to Top
League ONE record from 11/12 to 18/19; 24, (12, 3 @ L2), 8, 10, 9, 20, 16. * * * Relegated - '12 L1, promo - '14 L2
STATUS; perennial lower league without achieving promotion - then suddenly they moved in an upwards direction.
MANAGER; Brian Barry-Murphy (2019), previously Keith Hill (2013-19)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '99/00, '00/01 @ L2, 10/11 @ L1
Leagues One & Two - tried to raise their game.
Dale were 'the' div3 side, from Goldstone days, thru Gillingham and during the Withdean era. Meanwhile Micky Adams arrived at BHA to take us forward.
99/00 - Div3 (L2); 10/12/99 H 3-4. 8/1/00 A 1-0. B'ton 11th 67pt, R'dale 10th 68pt.
00/01 - results 19/8/00 H 2-1. 3/4/01 A 1-1. B'ton 1st, R'dale 8th 71pt o/s p-os.
10/11 - In League One, Dale were our first home fixture. It was 2-2 under Gus Poyet. At theirs in April we drew 2-2. Shortly afterwards BHA were champions and Dale finished 9th.
C21 EFL record: P6 . W1 D1 L1 . F7 A7 . W0 D2 L1 . F3 A4 . Pt6 GD-1

EFL L2 record from '99/00 to 18/19; 10, 8, 5, 19, 21, 9, 14, 9, 5, 6, 3, (9, 24 @ L1), 12, 3, (8, 10, 9, 20, 16 @ L1)
EFL: best = 8th L1 '15, worst = 21st L2 '04, promo - '10 & '14 L2, p-os - '02, '08, '09 L2, rel - '12 L1
PAST Managers; Steve Parkin (1999-2001), John Hollins (2001-2), Paul Simpson (2002-3), Alan Buckley (2003), Steve Parkin (2003-6), Keith Hill (2007-11), Steve Eyre (2011), John Coleman (2011-13), Keith Hill (2013-19)

Info - life at Spotland was same as ever, apart from ground improvements around Y2k. Dale spent over thirty years in tier four and failed on a few occasions to go higher.
In '07/8 they competed in the League2 p-o final at Wembley and 35k turned up. They finished '08/9 to still visit other usual suspects in the basement coz they blew p-o stage. But hey, '9/10 was the one and Dale finished 3rd and finally got auto-promo to L1. Er, they were relegated in '11/12. But 3rd again in L2 for '13/14. They just beat the drop from L1 in 17/18 but did better in 18/19 finishing around midtable.

Championship record from 11/12 to 18/19; (10, 2 @ L2), (4 @ L1), 21, 21, 24 @ Champ's, (4 @ L1), 22. * * * Promo - '13 L2, '14, '18 L1, rel - '17 & '19 C
STATUS; moved hither & thither but ups & downs have not ended yet a while.
MANAGER; Paul Warne (2016)

FALMER years; 14/15, 15/16, 16/17 @ Champ's
14/15 - under Sami Hyypia at the Amex in Oct we drew 1-1. With Chris Hughton at the NY Stad in April we lost 1-0. Albion 20th 47pt, Millers 21st 46pt.
15/16 - at ours in Sept we won 2-1. At theirs in Jan we lost 2-0. Albion 3rd 89pt p-os, United 21st 49pt.
16/17 - at home in Aug we won 3-0. Away in March we won 0-2. BHA 2nd 93pt promoted, RU 24th 23pt relegated
Champ's record: P6 . W2 D1 L0 . F6 A2 . W1 D0 L2 . F2 A3 . Pt10 GD+3

WITHDEAN era; '99/00 @ L2, '02/3, '04/5 @ Champ's, '06/7 @ L1
Championship, Leagues One & Two - an uphill struggle somewhere up north off the M1.
Millers had fallen to div3 when Albion were saying goodbye to the Goldstone Ground in 1997.
99/00 - Micky Adams first Withdean revolution began in div3 (L2); 28/12/99 A 1-3. 15/4/00 H 1-1. B'ton finished 11th, R'ham 2nd and went up automatically.
02/3 - two years later BHA joined United in div1 (Champ's); Martin Hinshelwood was then manager, 21/9/02 A 1-0. By October Steve Coppell replaced him, 8/3/03 H 2-0. B'ton were 23rd rel, R'ham 15th 59pt.
04/5 - in the Champ's, Mark McGhee was in charge; 4/12/04 H 1-0 - they were hams. 30/4/05 A 1-0 - their wrath er, hammed up. B'ton got 20th, R'ham 24th rel.
06/7 - for League1, McGhee was on borrowed time from day one; 5/8/06 A 1-0. He was quickly sacked in favour of Dean Wilkins, 3/2/07 H 0-0. B'ton made 18th, R'ham Utd 23rd rel again.
C21 total EFL record: P14 . W4 D3 L0 . F10 A3 . W4 D0 L3 . F7 A5 . Pt27 GD+9

EFL L2 record from '99/00 to 18/19; 2, (2 @ L1), (21, 15, 17, 24 @ Champ's), (20, 23 @ L1), 9, 14, 5, 9, 10, 2, (4 @ L1), (21, 21, 24 @ Champ's), (4 @ L1), (22 @ C)
EFL: best = 15th C '03, worst = 14th L2 '09, promo - '00 & '15 L2, '01 L1, rel - '05, '17, '19 C, '07 & '18 L1.
PAST Managers; Ronnie Moore (1997-2005), Mick Harford (2005), Alan Knill (2005-7), Mark Robins (2007-9), Ronnie Moore (2009-11), Andy Scott (2011-12), Steve Evans (2012-15), Neil Redfearn (2015-16), Neil Warnock (2016), Alan Stubbs (2016), Kenny Jackett (2016), Paul Warne (2016)

Info - In '07/8 Rotherham suffered a 10point penalty for being in Administration. In the event they only ended one place lower than 8th, but still woulda missed out on Lg2 play-offs. For Millers fans, yet again it was all a bit of a grind. In '08/9 they further got 17pts knocked off but still finished in mid table. In '9/10 Millers reached play-offs in L2, playing at Don Valley Stadium. For '10/11 they just missed out on p-o's in 9th. And again in '11/12 but United played in the New York stad next. For '12/13 they won auto promo as L2 runners-up. In '13/14 Utd got to L1 p-os and won the final on pens to gain promo to tier two. RU were back in L1 for 17/18 - returning again to the Championship via p-o final victory. But at end of 18/19 Millers fell down to L1 once more.

League ONE record from 11/12 to 18/19; (2 @ L2), 16, 23, (2 @ L2), 20, 18, 3, 18. * * * Promo - '12 & '15 L2, p-os - '18 L1, rel - '14 L1
STATUS; been up & down like a fiddlers elbow at both their venues. Play major & minor tunes recently.
MANAGER; Sam Ricketts (2018), previously John Askey (2018), Paul Hurst (2016-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '99/00, '00/01 @ L2
League Two - operating in a flood of expectation.
Shrews dropped from div2 in 1997 as Albion vacated the Goldstone. Micky Adams arrived nearly two terms later to take BHA into the Withdean era.
99/00 - (L2) div3; 19/10/99 H 1-0. 29/4/01 A 1-2. B'ton 11th 67pt, Sh'by Town 22nd 40pt.
00/01 - results 25/11/00 H 4-0. 3/5/01 A 3-0. B'ton 1st, Sh'by Tn 15th 55pt.
C21 EFL record: P4 . W2 D0 L0 . F5 A0 . W1 D0 L 1. F2 A4 . Pt9 GD+3

EFL L2 record from '99/00 to 18/19; 22, 15, 9, 24, (3 @ Conf), 21, 10, 7, 18, 7, 12, 4, 2, (16, 23 @ L1), 2, (20, 18, 3, 18 @ L1)
EFL: best = 3rd L1 '18, worst = 3rd Cn '04, promo - '04 Cn, '12 & '15 L2, p-os - '07, '09, '11 L2, '18 L1, rel - '03 L2, '14 L1
PAST Managers; Kevin Ratcliffe (1999-2003), Jimmy Quinn (2003-4), Gary Peters (2004-8), Paul Simpson (2008-10), Graham Turner (2011-13), Mike Jackson (2013-14), Micky Mellon (2014-16), Paul Hurst (2016-18), John Askey (2018)
EFL Trophy finalists 2018.

Info - Gay Meadow experienced Conference football in '03/4, before quickly returning to FL status. In '07/8, Town moved to brand spanking New Meadow, a 10k venue that hopefuly won't be flooded out - by water at least. They got done in the '08/9 p-o final to remain in League2. For '9/10 Shrews just about finished in top half of the table. In '10/11 the Shropshire outfit got as far as p-o phases - but no cigar again. But by '11/12 they made it up to L1 at long last as L2 runners-up. In '13/14 Shrews were relegated back to L2. But bounced back for '15/16. After 17/18 they got to L1 p-os but slumped in 18/19 2pts above the d-z.

SOUTHEND Back to Top
League ONE record from 11/12 to 18/19; (4, 11, 5, 5 @ L2), 15, 7, 10, 19. * * * Promo - '15 L2
STATUS; out on a limb to go higher in several aspects but soldier on against the odds.
MANAGER; Kevin Bond (2019), previously Chris Powell (2018-19), Phil Brown (2013-18)
Falmer years - no league fixtures. EFL Cup - see Falmer Years, previous encounters.

WITHDEAN era - '99/00, '00/01 @ L2, '07/8, '08/9, '09/10 @ L1
Leagues One & Two - an equivalent attraction in Essex.
Micky Adams was at the helm when starting his first revolution in 1999 at tier4 and also returned as pilot during 2008 when at tier3.
99/00 - In Nov his new era outfit went to Roots Hall and got done 2-1. Things went a little bit better in March as Albion got a 1-0 home victory. Both clubs finished in mid-table of old div3 (L2).
00/01 - next season, Seagulls very first match was at Shrimpers but were all at sea, losing 2-0. On New Years Day at Withdean, B'ton were also defeated 0-2. But by early May BHA were promoted as no.1, while Southend United reached 11th. Many years later after each club enjoyed a spell in the Championship, they met in League1.
07/8 - at W'dean in Sept, Dean Wilkins Albion won 3-2 with two very late goals. We got done at their place 2-0 in April like fools. United sailed into play-offs, Albion didn't.
08/9 - Adams rev2 took us back in Aug and got a 0-2 win - whatever next? Russ Slade got beat at W'dean 1-3 in Mar - there's another first! But he kept us up to finish 16th on 52pts. Blues got to 8th with 71pts.
9/10 - at ours in Sept we L 2-3 under Russ Slade. During Apr under Gus Poyet we W 0-1 at Roots Hall. BHA = 13th 59pts but skint SU = relegated 23rd 43pts.
C21 EFL record: P10 . W2 D0 L3 . F7 A10 . W2 D0 L3 . F4 A6 . Pt9 GD-5

EFL L2 record from '99/00 to 18/19; 16, 11, 12, 17, 17, 4, (1 @ L1), (22 @ Champ's), (6, 8, 23 @ L1), 13, 4, 11, 5, 5, (15, 7, 10, 19 @ L1)
EFL: best = 22nd C '07, worst = 13th L2, promo - '05 & '15 L2, '06 L1, p-os - '12 & ''14 L2, rel - '07 C, '10 L1
PAST Managers; Alan Little (1999-2000), David Webb (2000-1), Rob Newman (2001-3), Steve Wignall (2003), Steve Tilson (2003-10), Paul Sturrock (2010-13), Phil Brown (2013-18), Chris Powell (2018-19)
EFL Trophy; finalists - 03/04, 04/05, 12/13

Info - Southend is officially -On-Sea. It was a favourite holiday resort for Londoners and has a long pier. Brighton & Hove is a day-trippers delight, colloquially known as London by-the-sea and also has a pier - albeit slightly shorter. There are other similarities, like being a dormitory for commuters but in football terms, we aren't always in the same peer group. Southend United 'did an Albion' by noughties coincidences and achieved back-to-back promotions, to go reside in the Championship. Shrimpers played against Seagulls again but as alternative League1 seasiders, through relegation from tier2 by both clubs. The suburb of Prittlewell once had a large 18th century house and grounds called Roots Hall, which is now the site of United's FC. Withdean is our equivalent suburban environment and also shares a kind of Brighton-breezy, in-yer-face support from a devoted band of followers. These two groups of die-hard grafters have kept each of their respective clubs alive at various times of impending disaster, to even enjoy a taste of football in higher echelons. Southend fans endured a chaotic period when falling close to the Conference, plus sale and lease of their ground to pay off debts. Brighton fans have been there alright and some. One noughties Sunday, Albion faithful from our huge catchment area and beyond, gathered by their local seaside and in warm sunshine, rallied to the cause. We yet again faced a threat, this time from political filibuster tactics by an arrogant and antagonistic assembly. But one who can be voted out of office, once our true democratic voice is spread far and wide. Yes we wanted and one day got, a community stadium at Falmer, on freedom's road to a second battle of Lewes. Southend fans had multi-million pound plans for a new arena at Fossetts Farm but in the meantime, have to keep up their payments to HM Revenue, local authorities and others like BHA do, in order to survive. We'll get twenty-odd thousand and more in future, seated below Sussex Downs. If Utd could poss get half of that crowd in their proposed outskirts icon, they will be doing extremely well - with West Ham just down the road to east-end streets of gold.
In '10/11 Blues finished 13th in L2 and next term made play-offs. They did so again in '13/14, gaining promo via knockouts in '14/15. At end of 18/19 Shrimpers were just floating above the L1 d-z.

League ONE record from 11/12 to 18/19; (13, 17, 14, 16, 17, 20 @ Prem), (24 @ C), 5. * * * Relegated - '17 P, '18 C
STATUS; lower order Prem regulars this century until timeless fickle finger of footy fate pointed to lower league!
MANAGER; Jack Ross (2018), previously Chris Coleman (2017-18)
Falmer years - no league fixtures. League Cup - go to Falmer Years, previous encounters.

WITHDEAN era - '04/5 @ Champ'S
Championship - at least we got one chance to see their place.
Black Cats were a bit of a yo-yo club between tiers 1&2, while moving from Roker Park. Albion were simultaneously groundless, stuck in tier4 at end of the 20th century. Then pace gathered in the Withdean era but we missed 'em originally in div1 of '02/3. BHA were soon back in the Championship and could Mark McGhee somehow keep us there?
04/5 - it hardly seemed possible we were off to the Stadium of Light; 30/10/04 A 2-0. Back at W'dean in a season of shocks; 19/2/05 H 2-1. B'ton hung on to 20th with 51pts. Sunderland took the title and joined the proverbial elite again.
Champ's: P2 . W1 D0 L0 . F2 A1 . W0 D0 L1 . F0 A2 . Pt3 GD-1

PREM record from '99/00 to 18/19; 7, 7, 17, 20, (3, 1 @ Champ's), 20, (1 @ Champ's), 15, 16, 13, 10, 13, 17, 14, 16, 17, 20, (24 @ Champ's), (5 @ L1)
Prem: best = 7th '00 & '01, worst = 20th '03, '06 & '17 (in 15yrs), top ten - three times '00, '01, '11, stayed up - 6 times '02, '08, '09, '13, '15, '16, relegated - 3 times '03, '06, '17. Champ's: promo - '05, '07, rel - '18. L1: p-os - '19
PAST Managers; Peter Reid (1995-2002), Howard Wilkinson (2002-3), Mick McCarthy (2003-6), Niall Quinn (2006), Roy Keane (2006-8), Ricky Sbragia (2008-9), Steve Bruce (2009-11), Martin O'Neill (2011-13), Paulo Di Canio (2013-14), Gus Poyet (2014-15), Dick Advocaat (2015), Sam Allardyce (2015-16), David Moyes (2016-17), Simon Grayson (2017), Chris Coleman (2017-18)
LEAGUE CUP; finalists - 13/14. FL Trophy; finalists - 18/19.

Info - talk about up and down, Sunderland and Brighton went on slightly different paths, bouncing between tiers 1&2 for the Wearside outfit and 2&3 for southern seasiders. For '08/9 they were in the Prem and we in League1, one side hoping to meet the other on another day eventually. Both clubs survived relegation scares on the last day. In '9/10, Black Cats had a er, half decent season in the Prem bottom half. We are still miles apart in more ways than one. But we still lived in hope, on finally reaching Falmer. For '10/11 they were mid table. And were again just above the drop zone in 15/16. But were rock bottom & relegated from PL in 16/17, while BHA were promoted from the Championship. Sunderland then fell straight thru the Champ's to L1 at end of 17/18. In 18/19 Black Cats reached p-o final.

TRANMERE Back to Top
League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; (12, 11, 22 @ L1), (24 @ L2), (6, 2, 2 @ nat lg), 6. * * * Relegated - '14 L1, '15 L2, promo - '19 nl
STATUS; northwest outfit who were on a slow decline from turn of the century. Playing in National League was a wake up call.
MANAGER; Micky Mellon (2016)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '01/2, '03/4, '06/7, '07/8, '08/9, '09/10, '10/11 @ L1
League One - they might one day.
This Merseyside outfit gave a noughties impression of aiming for higher, without actually getting there. In fact they fell out of div1 (C) in 2001, just as Seagulls flew to loftier perches than old div3 (L2). While Brighton foraged for acceptance in the Championship, Tranmere Rovers blundered about in League1. That division was our battleground, from which both clubs hoped to aspire.
01/2 - In August, Brighton went to Birkenhead under Micky Adams and got a goal-less draw. Rovers returned to Peter Taylor's Fortress Withdean in mid winter and lost 1-0, as Albion were set on a charge to div1 themselves.
03/4 - we met again two years later, first in the Wirral with Mark McGhee's outfit to get done 1-0 just before Xmas - trauma and drama. By time Tranmere arrived in north B'ton suburbs in March, Albion were after a play-off place and put 'em to the sword 3-0 - trounced FAC transiters. We went up via a Millennium Stadium final from 4th and they completed another near p-o miss in 8th.
06/7 - three terms later we were back on L1 terms but failed to master dirty northern raiders (their name has Viking origins), rookie Dean Wilkins unit losing 0-1 in the south. On Easter Monday Tranmere dispatched us somewhat fortuitously 2-1 on their turf. Rovers were yet again close to play-offs 9th, while we definitely weren't - being 18th above the drop zone.
07/8 - the following season, saw B'ton visit Prenton Park early doors and get beat 2-0 as Wilkins tried to sort out his squad fit for purpose. In Feb the Merseyside mob ferried across to W'dean for a boring nil-nil draw. They still had p-o's in mind, while we again appeared to care less. Tranmere finished an average 11th, Brighton 7th but way off the pace.
08/9 - under Micky Adams again we went there in Dec and got beat again 1-0. Under Russ Slade in Mar, it was 0-0 at W'dean. Rovers made 7th with 74pts. Albion reached 16th on 52pts and Slade signed a contract.
9/10 - it was same old at theirs with 2-1 defeat in Oct. Gus Poyet was gaffero in March for a 3-0 win at ours. BHA finished 13th 59pts but Rovers only scraped 19th 51pts to stay up on the last day.
10/11 - we went to Prenton Park in Oct and drew 1-1. At W'dean in March, BHA won 2-0. Albion finished as L1 champions and Rovers got to 18th.
C21 EFL record: P14. W4 D2 L1 . F9 A1 . W0 D2 L5 . F3 A9 . Pt16 GD+2

EFL L1 record from '99/00 to 18/19; (13, 24 @ Champ's), 12, 7, 8, 3, 18, 9, 11, 7, 19, 17, 12, 11, 22, (24 @ L2), (6, 2, 2 @ nat lg), (6 @ L2)
EFL: best = 13th C '00, worst = 6th NL '16, promo - '18 NL, '19 L2, p-os - '05 L1, '16 & '17 NL, rel - '01 C, '14 L1, '15 L2
PAST Managers; John Aldridge (1996-2001), Dave Watson (2001-2), Ray Mathias (2002-3), Brian Little (2003-6), Ronnie Moore (2006-9), John Barnes (2009), Les Parry (2009-11), Ronnie Moore (2012-13), John Coleman (2013-14), Rob Edwards (2014), Micky Adams (2014-15), Gary Brabin (2015-16), Micky Mellon (2016)
LEAGUE CUP; finalists - 99/00

Info - two previous W'dean meetings in this modern era produced crowds of 6000 in March '04 and 6200 in February '02. On both occasions Brighton were on course for promotion from League One and the phrase 'fortress Withdean', applied almost exactly to dual home form. For a few seasons the Birkenhead outfit managed to be close to or be involved in play-offs. Except '05/6 when they nearly reached the relegation zone. Ronnie Moore went back as boss after a career as a player there. He shifted out several personnel and imported those from Championship grade clubs. Apparently there was some money to spend, so he got a degree of class brought into defence and added Suker, a tricky, 'run at 'em', goal scoring winger. For these reasons Rovers kicked off '06/7 at 16/1 to take League1 by storm. Merseyside fans expected a play-off spot at least but Moore, a previous assistant and caretaker manager there in the late eighties, knew the score. He said, 'being able to take them where they belong in the Championship is a fantastic opportunity'. Er, hang on a minute it was only November. So he qualified that statement with, 'but it won't happen overnight'. Brighton fans knew exactly what he meant. Hey, what's changed? In '13/14 Rovers were relegated to L2 then went straight down into the National League (Conference) for '15/16 & gained p-os in 16/17 & 17/18 - winning promo via p-o final. At end of 18/19 Rovers reached L2 p-os, again winning promo in the the final, aet.

League ONE record from 11/12 to 18/19; (16, 20, 20, 15, 7 @ L2), 15, 18, 20. * * * Promo - '16 L2
STATUS; reborn form of the once elite club. Ply their trade in lower league these days.
MANAGER; Wally Downes (2018), previously Neil Ardley (2012-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '02/3 @ Champ's
Championship - MK no way, resurrected.
Wimbledon played at Withdean in a League Cup round1 tie in August 2001. Dons' supporters had been up in arms and 'MK no way' banners highlighted their grievances. FL Chairmen met and turned down current up-sticks proposals. A year later in Aug, Brighton went to Selhurst Park for a div1 (Championship) fixture against Wimbledon. 'Home' fans were almost non-existent because the club had been split asunder by an FA decision to allow relocation to south midland extremities.
02/3 - Martin Hinshelwood's Albion, 24/8/02 A 1-0. Coppell's, 3/2/02 H 2-3. B'ton ended up 23rd and dropped to div2 again. Dons finished 10th with 65pts.
Champ's: P2 . W0 D0 L1 . F2 A3 . W0 D0 L1 . F0 A1 . Pt0 GD-2

Prem record from 00/99 to 03/4: 18, (8, 9, 10, 24 @ Champ's). Relegated - '00 P, '04 C - see MK Dons
Non-league from 04/5 to 08/9: 1, 4, 5, 3 @ Isthmian Lg, 1 @ Conf South.
EFL L2 record from '09/10 to 18/19; (8, 2 @ Conf), 16, 20, 20, 15, 7, (15, 18, 20 @ L1)
EFL: best = 15th L1 '17, worst = 8th Cn '10, promo - '11 Cn, '16 L2
WIMBLEDON was one of the original 22 clubs to play in the new Premier League of 1992.
PAST Managers; Terry Brown (2007-12), Neal Ardley (2012-18)

Background - Wimbledon really did play on the Common well over one hundred years ago. Around that time prior to world war one, they combined with Wimbledon Borough and established a ground at Plough Lane, near their original at the Greyhound Track. Following success in the amateur Isthmian League between those world wars, that continued from fifties through into mid sixties, they eventually joined semi-pro Southern League ranks. Again they rose to many achievements in various competitions, including FA Cup ties against professional sides.
Wimbledon was elected to Football League status in 1977. Dons were div4 champions in 1983, runners-up in div3 in 1984 and promoted from div2 in 1986, a truly remarkable record in so short a space of time. For good measure they won the FA Cup in 1988, against all er, common logic. The notorious Taylor safety report meant Plough Lane was not remotely up to modern football standards required and so Wimbledon ground shared with Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park from 1991.
Merton Borough Council and the club proved unable to come to an agreement for a suitable site to build a replacement ground locally. Over another decade of exile, true home-bred fan base inevitably eroded and changed. During this period talk increased of a move away from south London, which brought hard core supporters together in formal protests. Their Board had suggested Milton Keynes as a final destination.
A new ownership had prevailed and a new era was about to begin. A particular irony was that Plough Lane, although derelict was still a possibility for redevelopment, where Merton Borough Council had indicated support for the project. Perhaps it really was more like, Safeway all the way! Fans deserted to attractions of AFC Wimbledon, a club specially created to play in the Combined Counties League, using a base at Kingstonian. Football for Wimbledon had therefore gone full circle.
In '10/11 AFC Wimbledon gained promotion to the FL for 2012 thru winning the Blue Square p-o final on penalties. It had only taken nine years to recreate the club from nought to be fit for pro football again. In 2016 they won the L2 p-o final to elevate to L1 once more. At end of 18/19 AFCW finished just above the d-z on gd.

WYCOMBE Back to Top
League ONE record from 11/12 to 18/19; (21 @ L1), (15, 22, 4, 13, 9, 3 @ L2), 17. * * * Promo - '18 L2, rel - '12 L1
STATUS; regular lower league fare, where the outstanding thing is the natural beauty of the area.
MANAGER; Gareth Ainsworth (2012)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '01/2, '03/4, '09/10 @ L1
League One - down a dead end in the AONB.
Chairboys were regular div2 (L1) before and during beginning of the Withdean era.
01/2 - Micky Adams initial revolution was under way in div2 (L1); 25/9/01 A 1-1. Peter Taylor took over, 5/3/02 H 4-0. B'ton ended 1st promo, Wyc'm W'ders 11th 64pts.
03/4 - back for div2, Mark McGhee was boss, 26/12/03 H 4-0 - winter wonderland. 7/3/04 A 1-1 - stadium beautiful demo-land. B'ton 4th p-o winners, Wyc'm 24th 37pt rel.
09/10 - In L1 during Sept at ours, Peter Taylor was WW boss. He saw BHA win 1-0 under Russ Slade. But in Dec, both had gone and BHA won 2-5 at Adams Park under Gus Poyet. BHA finished 13th 59pts but WW dropped to L2 22nd 45pts.
C21 EFL record: P6 . W3 D0 L0 . F9 A0 . W1 D2 L0 . F7 A4 . Pt 14 GD+12

EFL L2 record from '99/00 to 18/19; (12, 13, 11, 18, 24 @ L1), 10, 6, 12, 7, 3, (22 @ L1), 3, (21 @ L1), 15, 22, 4, 13, 9, 3, (17 @ L1)
EFL: best = 11th L1 '02, worst = 22nd L2, promo - '09, '11, '18 L2, p-os - '06, '08, '15 L2, rel - '04, '10, '12 L1
PAST Managers; Lawrie Sanchez (1999-2003), Tony Adams (2003-4), John Gorman (2004-6), Paul Lambert (2006-8), Peter Taylor (2008-9), Gary Waddock (2009-2012), Gareth Ainsworth (2012)

Info - Brighton fans held a Falmer protest demo inside Adams Park after the L1 game in 2004. Red tape concerning AONB development had long before also been experienced by Wanderers. They went down but stopped the rot as Albion struggled in the Championship. Wycombe almost bounced back in '07/8 season, beaten in p-os from a tight k-o stage. In '08/9 they were 3rd in Lg2 and got auto promo by goal difference. For '10/11 Wanderers got 3rd spot in L2 and auto promo. But dropped back after one term. They just beat the drop to non-league in '13/14. Chairboys regained promotion to L1 in 17/18, retaining status there for 18/19.

 Back to Top

LEAGUE TWO Back to Top

BRADFORD Back to Top
League ONE record from 11/12 to 18/19; (18, 7 @ L2), 11, 7, 5, 5, 11, 24. * * * Promo - '13 L2, relegated - '19 L1
STATUS; a historic northern club with record at Prem level this century but a lower league outfit these days.
MANAGER; Gary Bowyer (2019), previously David Hopkin (2018-19), Michael Collins (2018), Simon Grayson (2018), Stuart McCall (2016-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '02/3 @ Champ's, '06/7 @ L1
Championship & League One - Bantams bombed.
Brighton's history with Bradford is a little limited in the Withdean era, initially being restricted to fixtures for a campaign when both were in div1 (Champ's). Prior to then, City had reached Y2k Premiership but returned, while Albion were on a roll, rising from div3 (League Two) in two years.
02/3 - results; 2/11/02 H 3-2, 15/2/03 A 1-0 - B'ton 23rd 45 pts, Bd'fd 19th 52pts. Brighton dropped to League 1 under Steve Coppell, having failed to beat other relegation threatened sides, bizarrely bar Bradford. We swapped places for '04/5 season as City fell on hard times and Albion tried to re-establish in the Championship.
06/7 - in Lg1 under Dean Wilkins; 4/11/06 A 2-1, 14/4/07 H 0-1 - B'ton 18th 52pts, Bd'fd 22nd 47pts and relegated to Lg2. It's come to owt for remotely staying separated now, apart from a dis-similar post code.
C21 EFL record: P4 . W1 D0 L1 . F3 A3 . W2 D0 L0 F3 A1 . Pt9 GD+2

EFL L2 record from '99/00 to 18/19; (17, 20 @ Prem), (15, 19, 23 @ Champ's), (11, 11, 22 @ L1), 10, 9, 14, 18, 18, 7, (11, 7, 5, 5, 11, 24 @ L1)
Prem: stayed up - '00, relegated - '01 (2yrs). Champ's: rel - '04. L1: pos - '16 & '17, rel - '07 & '19. L2: promo - '13.
PAST Managers; Paul Jewell (1998-2000), Jim Jefferies (2000-1), Nicky Law (2001-3), Bryan Robson (2003-4), Colin Todd (2004-7), Stuart McCall (2007-10), Peter Taylor (2010-11), Peter Jackson (2011), Phil Parkinson (2011-16), Stuart McCall (2016-18), Simon Grayson (2018), Michael Collins (2018)
LEAGUE CUP; finalists - 12/13

Background Info - Colin Todd took over at Valley Parade in the summer of 2004. He is remembered as a seventies England and Derby defender of some class. Brian Clough desperately wanted a quality player, to make his useful midlands outfit national champions and paid 175k to Sunderland for Todd to make it eventually happen. Thirty or so years later, manager Todd was also promised money to spend -with his immediate aim to regain Championship status for Bradford. Clough had hacked Derby to pieces before rebuilding and then spending his way to further success. Todd had a clear-out in similar fashion at the end of '05/6 term. Clough didn't totally believe in experience over youth and Todd was more or less left with both young and old, with a gap between. In something like that situation, Brighton bottomed-out once McGhee's 'budget cuts' took effect - post relegation that May '06. Failing to plug a hole in terms of squad numbers, points total and ultimately league position, has an unfortunate price many managers pay for with their job. A 'sit vac' sign on an empty desk in a club office, is testimony to getting it wrong with the Chairman's money. Clough was once a young boss who went a long way, Todd was down the road but still to prove he could cut it big time. Dean Wilkins set out on his journey and like these two previously, was handed a mission. He had vision, knew his own mind and went his own way. He was sacked after a 7th place finish o/s p-os in '07/8.
Bradford ended up in League2 and missed p-o action in '08/9 by a couple of points and were mid table in '9/10. That May was the 25th anniversary of the devastating fire that destroyed part of Bradford's ground. For '10/11 & '11/12 Bantams finished 18th in L2. But in '12/13 they got promotion to L1 via play-offs. They were twice in p-os (15/16 & 16/17) in years to 17/18 but next fell into L2 again at end of 18/19.

League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; 9, 14, 2 @ Conf), 19, 9, 11, 11, 21. * * * Promo - '14 nat lg
STATUS; plenty of ups & downs toward base of the footy pyramid. Consolidating in the EFL is acceptable.
MANAGER; Colin Calderwood (2018), previously Joe Dunne (2018), Shaun Derry (2015-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '01/2 @ L1
League One - dealing with the university of footy life.
U's kicked around in div3 (L2) during Albion's gory years. In 1999 they went up to div2 (L1). A couple of seasons later we joined 'em there.
01/2 - Micky Adams start in div2 (L1), 11/8/01 A 0-0. Then Peter Taylor's reign, 19/1/02 H 4-3. B'ton took the div2 title, Cambridge Utd finished 24th with 34pts and were relegated back to div3 (L2).
C21 EFL record: P2 . W1 D0 L0 . F4 A3 . W0 D1 L0 . F0 A0 . Pt4 GD+1

EFL L2 record '97-'02; 10, 16, 2, (19, 19, 24 @ L1), from '07/8 to 18/19; (2, 2, 10, 17, 9, 14, 2 @ Conf), 19, 9, 11, 11, 21
EFL: best = 19th L1 '02, worst = 17th conf '11, promo - '14 NL
PAST Managers; Richard Money (2012-15), Shaun Derry (2015-18), Joe Dunne (2018)
EFL Trophy finalists 2002. FA Trophy winners 2014.

Info - United came late to the Football League, in terms of others previously accumulating tens of decades of professional participation. They'd next been around for well over thirty years in lower divisions but suddenly weren't on the FL lg2 fixture list any more. There had been ambitious plans to redevelop Abbey Stadium and a new stand was in situ when Albion visited as a pre-season, tier two outfit again, seemingly on the up for 2004. It certainly is a learning curve and historically, who'd be a student of ups and downs of an Association academy. At very end of the Withdean era during 2011, Cambridge were kicking about in non-league footy in Blue Square Prem where they stayed as BHA played at Falmer (17, 9, 14). In '13/14 they won the non-league p-o final from finishing in second pos. At end of 18/19 U's were now a lower order L2 outfit.

CARLISLE Back to Top
League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; (8, 17, 22 @ L1), 20, 10, 6, 10, 11. * * * Relegation - '14 L1
STATUS; this century has been a struggle as lower league fodder in that harsh EFL environment of the northwest.
MANAGER; Steve Pressley (2019), previously John Sheridan (2018), Keith Curle (2014-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '99/00, '00/01 @ L2, '06/7, '07/8, '08/9, '09/10, '10/11 @ L1
Leagues One & Two - gonna get higher if it kills 'em
While Micky Adams' Brighton strived to turn a homecoming div3 (L2) season into one to launch a promotion, Carlisle United just struggled.
99/00 - in Oct B'ton went north-west and got a 0-1 victory in Cumbria. Back at Withdean in May for the very last fixture, we also obtained a 1-0 result.
00/01 - during the next season, we murdered 'em 4-1 at home in Nov. Up at their place it was 0-0 in April from an all but unbeaten BHA run-in. Brighton were promoted to div2 (L1) and Carlisle survived the drop for another year.
06/7 - we met again in League One when Dean Wilkins 11 got hammered 3-1 on a lovely September afternoon north of the lakes. Come end of December it was 1-2 in north B'ton suburbs. Carlisle Utd just missed p-o places, while we flunked out above drop zones.
07/8 - the following season, Cumbrians were pushing for promotion and got a fighting 2-2 draw next to a southern nature reserve in autumn. In March they did us 2-0 up there. CU got beat in L1 p-o semis, while BHA finished 7th.
08/9 - under Adams again, up at theirs in Nov, we got done again 3-1. In Feb they also did us 0-2 at W'dean. We finished 16th, they made 20th.
9/10 - it was 0-2 to us, at Brunton Park in Sept under Russ Slade. In April, it was Gus Poyet at W'dean and a 1-2 defeat. Albion = 13th 59pts, United = 14th 58pts.
10/11 - at BP in Sept it was 0-0. At W'dean in Mar it was 4-3 to us! B'ton were 1st and Cumbrians finished 12th in L1.
C21 EFL record: P14 . W3 D1 L3 . F13 A12 . W2 D2 L3 . F5 A8 . Pt18 GD-2

EFL L1 record from '99/00 to 18/19; (23, 22, 17, 22, 23 @ L2), (3 @ Conf), (1 @ L2), 8, 4, 20, 14, 12, 8, 17, 22, (20, 10, 6, 10, 11 @ L2)
EFL: best = 4th L1 '08, worst = 3rd conf '05, promo - '05 Cn & '06 L2, p-os - '08 L1, '17 L2, rel - '04 L2 & '14 L1
PAST Managers; Martin Wilkinson (1999-2000), Ian Atkins (2000-1), Roddy Collins (2001-3), Paul Simpson (2003-6), Neil McDonald (2006-7), John Ward (2007-8), Greg Abbott (2008-13), Graham Kavanagh (2013-14), Keith Curle (2014-18), John Sheridan (2018)
EFL Trophy; winner - 10/11, finalists - 02/03, 05/06, 09/10

Background - when for once Brighton fans were alternatively marauding into Wales for a p-o final, on a May Bank Holiday afternoon in 2004, Carlisle United's devoted were still accepting their fate, relegated as fully fledged members of the Conference in their next season. The Cumbrians climbed massive peaks to assail that 5th tier summit, in order to scale a final height in 2005 when roped into a play-off. They acclimatised quickly in League2 and in a lung bursting surge, stood on top of their own world as champions '05/6. Carlisle's successful back to back manager Paul Simpson has since been guided to another mountainous job over at Peak District Derby. So he moved from one National Park to another but one possibly involving a touch more Pride. In '13/14 Utd were relegated to L2. Cumbrians reached p-os in 16/17 but not for 17/18 & 18/19.

League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; 6, 5, 17, 23, (1 @ conf), 21, 17, 16. * * * Promo - '16 conf, relegation - '15 L2
STATUS; falling back into non-league was a shock for a club routinely used to L1 or L2 year on year this century.
MANAGER; Michael Duff (2018), previously Gary Johnsone (2015-18)
Falmer years - no league fixtures. EFL Cup - see Falmer Years, previous encounters.

WITHDEAN era - '99/00, '00/01 @ L2, '06/7, '07/8, '08/9 @ L1
Leagues One & Two - more than just racing around.
Would you believe Cheltenham Town were in their first year as a Football League side when visiting Brighton in September 1999.
99/00 - we beat 'em 1-0 at brand new Withdean and barely a month later went to ex-Conference Whaddon Road to register a goal-less draw. In fact Robins just missed play-offs, while mid table BHA were expected to compete for promotion.
00/01 - the following season, Micky Adams revolution was in full swing by Sept and Albion upped it 3-0 at home but crashed 3-1 in mid winter Gloucestershire. Brighton finished top of old div3, Cheltenham Tn again were a few points shy of p-o places. Our paths did not cross again until Dec 2006 in League1, although both clubs had known various ups and downs in the interim five years.
06/7 - Dean Wilkins Seagulls got the verdict 2-1 in our nest and flew over to Robins for the last fixture. It all ended with a 1-1 draw, the smaller club was ecstatic at maintaining their third tier status, where-as, perhaps the bigger one underachieved to finish a point behind in lower reaches.
07/8 - here we go again, following an FAC1 and JPT series of Nov games, B'ton lost 2-1 in Gloucs during Feb. That involved conceding two in stoppage to put Robins cat among Seagulls. At W'dean we done 'em on a Tue nite 10 days later 2-1. The winner affirmed two mins from time. They stayed up again on the last day, while we finished just outside p-o places.
08/9 - In Oct at ours it was 3-3 - don't ask, especially Micky Adams! During Jan at theirs it was 2-2 and almost did our heads in. Town went down but we stayed up.
C21 EFL record: P10 . W4 D1 L0 . F11 A5 . W0 D3 L2 . F5 A8 . Pt16 GD+3

EFL L2 records from '99/00 to 18/19; 8, 9, 4, (21 @ L1), 14, 14, 5, (17, 19, 23 @ L1), 22, 17, 6, 5, 17, 23, (1 @ conf), 21, 17, 16
EFL: best = 17th L1 '07, worst = 1st conf '16, promo - '02, '06 L2, '16 conf, p-os - '12 & '13 L2, rel - '03, '09 L1, '15 L2
PAST Managers; Steve Cotterill (1997-2002), Graham Allner (2002-3), Bobby Gould (2003), John Ward (2003-7), Keith Downing (2007-8), Martin Allen (2008-9), Mark Yates (2009-14), Paul Buckle (2014-15), Gary Johnson (2015-18)

Background - in more than a flight of fancy, Cheltenham rose from the Conference in 1999 - going up as champions. They had beaten Yeovil in a best of the west decider, deep in the Cotswolds with a deeper stoppage time winner. Local lad dun good, Steve Cotterill took over as boss at Whaddon Road in 1997 and had steered a course to League1 status by 2002. Albion had met Town twice in div3 (League2) as mentioned above and once-upon-a-time, ex-B'ton on-loan striker Cotterill was warmly welcomed by original Withdeanites with long memories. Anyway as a successful manager, he then moved north. Robins fell, in going south and League1 went west, in returning to a lower roosting position. In April '06 they beat Grimsby to rise phoenix like once more under John Ward, who flew in late in 2003. For '9/10 in L2, Town were again in free fall but beat the drop to non-league. Bizarrely, it was Grimsby who entered the Conference for '10/11. Robins next completed their L2 season in 17th position. In '11/12 & '12/13 they reached play-offs but got relegated in 14/15. In 15/16 they won the Conf (National League) title at first attempt. At end of 18/19 Town ended up in L2 midtable.

League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; (10, 20, 16, 19, 23 @ L1), 8, 13, 8 @ L2. * * * Relegated - '16 L1
STATUS; moved out of town during mid noughties but didn't make the jump to play for longer at higher level.
MANAGER; John McGreal (2016)
Falmer years - no league fixtures. EFL Cup - see Falmer Years, previous encounters.

WITHDEAN era - '01/2, '03/4, '08/9, '09/10, '10/11 @ L1
League One - escaped their roots eventually.
United were promoted to div2 (L1) in 1998, when Albion were looking to return to Sussex. BHA eventually caught up with Colchester after both spent time at lower level during the nineties.
01/2 - Peter Taylor was gaffer during the div2 (L1) campaign when hosting at W'dean - 27/10/01 H 1-0. For the return at Layer Road - 30/3/02 A 1-4. B'ton went up as champions, while United finished 15th on 57pts.
03/4 - Steve Coppell was in charge initially when back in div2. Seagulls lost in Essex 13/9/03 A 1-0 - with killer cross chagrin. Mark McGhee was at the helm for remainder of this season. Albion won v U's 20/3/04 H 2-1 - after collective collywobbles. B'ton went on to a Millennium Stadium experience and Col'ster got to 11th on 64pts.
08/9 - Micky Adams came back in League One and on Boxing day at W'dean, we got done 1-2. Russ Slade replaced him by Easter Monday and it was 0-1 to us up at their new Cuckoo Farm pad. We done the great escape to finish 16th on 52pts. They were 12th with 63pts.
9/10 - at ours in Dec, we lost 1-2 under Gus Poyet. At Com Stad in March, it was 0-0. BHA made 13th 59pts, while U's were 8th 72pts.
10/11 - it was W'dean in Jan (after postponement) and we won 2-0. Up at the farm on Easter Mon in April we drew 1-1. BHA got top spot and U's finished 10th.
C21 EFL record: P10 . W3 D0 L2 . F7 A5 . W2 D2 L1 . F6 A3 . Pt17 GD+5

EFL L1 records from '99/00 to 18/19; 18, 17, 15, 12, 11, 15, 2, (10, 24 @ Champ's), 12, 8, 10, 10, 20, 16, 19, 23, (8, 13, 8 @ L2)
EFL: best = 10th C '07, worst = 13th L2 '18, promo - '06 L1, rel - '08 C, '16 L1
PAST Managers; Steve Whitton (1999-2003), Phil Parkinson (2003-6), Geraint Williams (2006-8), Paul Lambert (2008-9), Aidy Boothroyd (2009-10), John Ward (2010-12), Joe Dunne (2012-14), Tony Humes (2014-15), Kevin Keen (2016), David Wright (2016), John McGreal (2016)

Info - In '05/6 the Essex club was granted permission to build a new stad at Cuckoo Farm. They also got promotion to the Championship as runner-up to county rivals Southend in League1. In '06/7 United got to top ten - just. Conversely their opponents on the Thames estuary dropped out of tier two. Unfortunately Colchester were subsequently relegated from the Championship in '07/8. And much later were down into L2 for '16/17. At end of 18/19 U's just missed reaching p-os.

CRAWLEY Back to Top
League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; 3, (10, 14, 22 @ L1), 20, 19, 14, 19. * * * Promo - '12 L2, relegated - '15 L1
STATUS; ex-non-league outfit initially experienced the bounce effect when gaining membership of EFL. Reality is more an average of expectaions.
MANAGER; Gabriele Cioffi (2018), previously Harry Kewell (2017-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.
Withdean era - no meetings.

EFL L1 record from '04/5 to 18/19; (12, 17, 18, 15, 9, 7, 1 @ Conf), (3 @ L2), 10, 14, 22, (20, 19, 14, 19 @ L2)
EFL: best = 10th L1, worst = 18th conf, promo - '11 conf, '12 L2, rel - '15 L1
PAST Managers; Steve Evans (2007-12), Craig Brewster (2012), Sean O'Driscoll (2012), Richie Barker (2012-13), Guy Whittingham (2013), John Gregory (2013-15), Mark Yates (2015-16), Dermot Drummy (2016-17), Harry Kewell (2017-18)

Info - Town rose from low down the non-league pyramid to become Blue Square South champions in 2004. A period of upheaval at the club during the late noughties resulted in new owners investing and aiming high. They backed the small Sussex outfit to gain the coveted BSP title (National League) in 2011 and on into the FL for '11/12. Red Devils then immediately achieved automatic promotion to L1. Ex-Albion boss Steve Coppell became Director of Football there. But for '15/16 they were back in L2. At end of 18/19 Town were again a lower order L2 outfit.

CREWE Back to Top
League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; 7, (13, 19, 20, 24 @ L1), 17, 15, 12. * * * Promo - '12 L2, relegation - '16 L1
STATUS; known higher levels during early noughties but not the force of old. Lower league fare these days.
MANAGER; David Artell (2017)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '04/5, '05/6 @ Champ's, '06/7, '07/8, '08/9 @ L1
Championship & League One - the club we couldn't beat - but then...
There is only one Albion as far as Brighton fans are concerned. There is also an Alexandra among those Uniteds, Towns and City's in league football. But perhaps a little bit of a girly name for the Railwaymen you might ponder. When founded, Crewe played at Alexandra Recreation Ground for a while but we don't know how far that was from the station. Anyway, there'd not been too many meetings in over a century of history and we seemed to miss one another in years before Withdean occupation. We swapped divisions in 2002 and they like us initially bounced back to the Championship quickly.
04/5 - we saw a double re-acquaintance inside a month and the small club twice put it over the big one. H = 1-3, A = 3-1. It was rumoured their manager, who'd been there for so long it was some sort of record, previously thought we'd been perpetually struggling in League1. Brighton could not get anything from Crewe, as opposed to other bottom four strugglers in that season when we both beat the drop on the last day. In fact by conceding just two goals to us in our quick brace of fixtures, eventually made for a better goal difference to finally ensure a place next term in tier two themselves. You might remember how desperate it became to avoid a relegation zone position, a knife edge we'd slip from the following season. Mark McGhee said, 'every goal and point is important'.
05/6 - Crewe were again battling with us at Championship bottom and Albion at least managed a home point this time around at 2-2. But lost away again 2-1.
06/7 - we met again but in League One and Alex spanked Albion at Withdean 1-4. Under Dean Wilkins we later scraped an away point at their place up north 1-1, while each club wallowed in mid-table anonymity.
07/8 - the following year, Crewe were day1 away opponents and Brighton got beat yet again 2-1. At Tongdean Lane in early Feb we walloped 'em 3-0 on the day fortune favoured down south. They stayed up on the last day, while we got 7th place.
08/9 - it was deja-vu away for game1 in Aug. We won 1-2 for a change, under Micky Adams. He'd gone by Feb and we got hammered 0-4 under White & Booker. But by May they went down while we stayed up.
C21 EFL record: P10 . W1 D1 L3 . F7 A13 . W1 D1 L3 . F6 A9 . Pt8 GD-9

EFL L1 records from '99/00 to 18/19; (19, 14, 22 @ Champ's), 2, (18, 21, 22 @ Champ's), 13, 20, 22, (18, 10, 7 @ L2), 13, 19, 20, 24, (17, 15, 12 @ L2)
EFL: best = 14th C '01, worst = 18th L2 '10, promo - '03 L1, '12 L2, rel - '02, '06 C, '09, '16 L1
PAST Managers; Dario Gradi (1983-2007), Steve Holland (2007-8), Gudjon Thordarson (2008-9), Dario Gradi (2009-11), Steve Davies (2011-16), David Artell (2017)
EFL Trophy; winner - 12/13

Background - we seemed to be playing Crewe in so-called six pointers like er, forever. In fact only the last two seasons in Championship relegation scenarios, represented tier two meetings since 1996 - when we also went down a level. Over a disrupted century of north vs. south football we've clashed but merely a dozen times. They were in division three north for decades until the divide was finally crossed - by introduction of div four to the FL countrywide. BHA were then relegated from original div two, dropping to four in successive seasons to initially play there in 1963/64. Meanwhile Crewe gained a first promotion to the third division in 1963 but came straight back down. It was Albion's turn to go up as champions in 1965, including our first two fixtures with them. So we missed Alex yet again until 1968/9, on their second elevation but they crashed back through that trap door to div four. There they stayed awhile as the world turned on to 1989.
Albion had hit their own heights in those intervening years but started an overall slow decline. Paths conjoined again in 1994/5 & '95/6 following Crewe's jump to higher standard. Again Alex ascended, to the renamed First Division (orig div2) by winning a play-off final in 1997. One way or another our tracks failed to come to a junction, bar those mid '60s & '90s couplings, with shunts into various sidings. A points switch always sent one or the other off in a different direction, after both clubs emerged from dark tunnels and were trying to find an up-line once more. Then we almost couldn't get rid of 'em.
In '9/10, Crewe finished in lower order of L2 with a similar record to BHA a div above. They were also better away from home. For '10/11, Alex were 10th in div4. But they made it back into L1 by winning the L2 p-o final of '11/12. A reversal of fortunes saw them drop into L2 again for '16/17. At end of 18/19 Alex were at the midtable mark.

EXETER Back to Top
League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; (23 @ L1), 10, 16, 10, 14, 5, 4, 9. * * * Relegated - '12 L1, p-os - '17 & '18
STATUS; in noughties turned out for a few non-league fixtures but predominately a lower league outfit cutting cloth accordingly.
MANAGER; Matt Taylor, previously long serving Paul Tidsdale (2006-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '99/00, '00/01 @ L2, '09/10, '10/11 @ L1
League One - from either two, it's all-fair and Blue square.
Grecians were a usual outfit in div3 (L2) at St James Park during both Albion's gory years and Withdean era homecoming period from Priestfield. Micky Adams initially got the ball rolling for BHA and won promotion in 2 years. But Exeter City struggled again above the dreaded drop to non-league.
99/00 - in div3 3/1/00 H 4-2. 8/4/00 A 0-0. B'ton finished 11th 67pt, Ex'er 21st 44pt.
00/01 - in div3 22/12/00 H 2-0. 27/1/01 A 1-0. B'ton 1st promoted, Ex'er 19th 50pt.
09/10 - in League One Gus Poyet was in charge at theirs in Dec, we won 0-1 in the wet. At ours in Feb, we won again 2-0. BHA were 13th 59pts, EC were 18th 51pts, beating relegation on the last day.
10/11 - at W'dean in Nov we won 3-0. At New Year at St-JP we won 1-2 with a 90min decider. BHA got the L1 title and Grecians were 8th.
C21 EFL record; P8 . W4 D0 L0 . F11 A2 . W2 D1 L1 . F3 A2 . Pt19 GD+10

EFL L2 records from '99/00 to 18/19; 21, 19, 16, 23, (6, 6, 7, 5, 4 @ Conf), 2, (18, 8, 23 @ L1), 10, 16, 10, 14, 5, 4, 9
EFL: best = 8th L1 '11, worst = 7th conf '06, promo - '08 conf, '09 L2, p-os - '17 & '18 L2, rel - '03 L2, '12 L1
PAST Managers; Peter Fox (1995-2000), Noel Blake (2000-1), John Cornforth (2001-2), Neil McNab (2002-3), Gary Peters (2003), Eamonn Dolan (2003-4), Alex Inglethorpe (2004-6), Paul Tidsdale (2006-18)

Info - Exeter City finally if not inevitably, dropped out of the FL in 2002. They got back to tier four via play-offs in season '07/8. They then went straight-up to Lg1 in '08/9, when runners-up in Lg2 - well, well. Oh dear, Grecians got relegated to L2 again in '11/12. For 16/17 & 17/18 they reached p-os. But at end of 18/19 just missed p-os.

League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; (10, 10, 11, 5, 2, 3 @ nat lg), 21, 5. * * * Promo - '17 NL
STATUS; very new to EFL fixtures, having served apprenticeship in non league contests many seasons previously.
MANAGER; Mark Cooper (2016)
Falmer years - no meetings.
Withdean era - no league meetings.
LDV League Trophy - see previous encounters. FA Trophy finalists 2001.

National League & EFL record from 08/9 to 18/19; 18, 21, 20, 10, 10, 11, 5, 2, 3, (21, 5 @ L2)
EFL: best = 5th L2 '19, worst = 21st NL '10, promo - '17 NL, p-os - '15 & '16 NL
PAST Managers; Dave Hockaday (2011-13), Adrian Pennock (2013-15), Scott Bartlett (2015-16)

Info - in 16/17 the small but ambitious (and 'big' spending) Gloucestershire non-league outfit won promotion to the Football League via the National League play-offs. They previously first gained a p-o place in 2015 and had actually started favourites for the title in 2013 & 2016. At end of 18/19 FG reached L2 p-os.

GRIMSBY Back to Top
League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; (11, 4, 4, 3, 4 @ Conf), 14, 18, 17. * * * Promo - '16 conf
STATUS; currently a very long way from level2 during the noughties, having dropped right through into the National League before climbing back up.
MANAGER; Michael Jolley (2018), previously Russell Slade (2017-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '02/3 @ Champ's, '03/4 @ L1
Championship & League One - north-east coastal erosion.
Mariners graced div1 from 1998 in a pre-Withdean era and Albion joined 'em there for our 1st post-Y2K level2 campaign.
02/3 - Martin Hinshelwood was boss when they came to fish on the south coast; 28/9/02 H 1-2 - they knew the score about quotas. Steve Coppell replaced and took Seagulls north to Town on final day; 4/5/03 A 2-2 - netted but each went over the side. B'ton 23rd 45pts, Grimsby 24th 39pts - both relegated.
03/4 - it was all at sea in div2 (L1) waters. Coppell had just skippered at W'dean; 11/10/03 H 3-0 - sunk 'em proper. Mark McGhee took over the helm; 14/2/04 A 2-1 - awash in a stormy winter week. B'ton sailed into 4th berth and floated to tier two on banks of the Taff. Grimsby got 21st spot to drop into Lg2 although reaching 50pts.
C21 EFL record: P4 . W1 D0 L1 . F4 A2 . W0 D1 L1 . F3 A4 . Pt4 GD+1

EFL L2 from '99/00 to 18/19; (20, 18, 19, 24 @ Champ's), (21 @ L1), 18, 4, 15, 16, 22, 23, (11, 11, 4, 4, 3, 4 @ Conf), 14, 18, 17
EFL: best = 18th C '01, worst = 11th Conf '11 & '12, promo - '16 NL, p-os - '06 L2, rel - '03 C, '04 L1, '10 L2
PAST Managers; Paul Hurst (2011-16), Marcus Bignot (2016-17), Russell Slade (2017-18)
EFL Trophy finalists 2008. FA Trophy finals 2013 & 2016.

Info - Town nearly made it directly back to League1 from their Blundell Park base in Cleethorpes at very end of '05/6 campaign. In the event they were beaten in the lg2 p-o final way over in Cardiff. In following seasons Mariners struggled in lower table positions. One glimmer of hope was if they could get the proposed Conoco stad built at Great Coates to kick-start a revival. In '08/9 they escaped relegation to non-league but in '9/10 Town were sunk without a trace - oh dear! In '10/11 & '11/12, Grimsby were 11th in the Conference (Blue Square Prem). Then for 12/13 thru 15/16, usually 4th. But Mariners regained League Two status via National League playoffs in 15/16. At end of 18/19 they were now a lower order L2 outfit.

National League record from 11/12 to 18/19; (20, 7, 3, 23 @ L1), (8, 24 @ L2), (13, 1 @ nat lg). Promo - '19 NL, relegated - '15 L1, '17 L2
STATUS; regular tier 3&4 club that once even had designs on the London Stadium post 2012... another pipedream.
MANAGER; Ross Embleton (2019), previously Justin Edinburgh (2017-19)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '99/00, '00/01 @ L2, '06/7, '07/8, '08/9, '09/10, '10/11 @ L1
Leagues One & Two - hoping to join Olympians by 2012.
For one reason or another Orient were considered a bogey side before Micky Adams Y2k Withdean revolution. We'd lost three times in div3 the previous term when housed at Gillingham and one of those was in FA Cup round1. O's made play-offs and BHA were happy to better 23rd for once.
99/00 - Orient was our first away match and Albion won 1-2. They came to Tongdean Lane in January and got a 0-1 reversal. Brighton finished 11th and Orient 19th in a disappointing season for both outfits.
00/01 - next time they came to us in September of Y2k and lost 2-0. In March Brighton visited Brisbane Road and left with 3 points for 0-2. Seagulls got promoted as div3 (L2) Champions, Orient made play-offs but blew their chances.
06/7 - five years later in Sept, Dean Wilkins side hammered 'em 4-1 at Withdean in League1. Quite a lot of changes had taken place at the Matchroom Stadium by Feb during intervening seasons but we also got a 1-4 victory. Irrespective of these results, both teams completed fixtures just above the drop zone.
07/8 - in the following season, Brighton went there in autumn first, for an honourable 2-2 draw broadcast on sky TV. At our place at start of March it was 1-1, with a 90+ pen equaliser for BHA! O's finished 14th and Albion 7th.
08/9 at end of Aug, Orient visited W'dean, it was 0-0 and very boring in sleepy sunshine. Even Micky Adams nodded off. He was out the door again by the return fixture of Mar, which we lost 2-1. Russ Slade kept us up to finish 16th on 52pts. O's got to 14th with 56pts.
9/10 - under Gus Poyet at W'dean on Boxing Day it was nil-nil. In Feb at theirs, yeah another draw 1-1. BHA got to 13th 59pts, LO survived via Russ Slade in 17th 51pts.
10/11 - on New Year's day at Withy we won 5-0. At Matchroom it was 0-0 at start of Feb. Albion got to be champions, while O's were 7th just missing L1 p-o's.
C21 EFL record: P14. W3 D3 L1 . F12 A3 . W3 D3 L1 . F12 A7 . Pt24 GD+14

EFL L1 record from '99/00 to 18/19; (19, 5, 18, 18, 19, 11, 3 @ L2), 20, 14, 14, 17, 7, 20, 7, 3, 23, (8, 24 @ L2), (13, 1 @ nat lg)
EFL: best = 3rd L1 '14, worst = 13th NL '18, promo - '06 L2, '19 NL, p-os - '01 L2, '14 L1, rel - '15 L1, '17 L2
PAST Managers; Tommy Taylor (1996-2001), Paul Brush (2001-3), Martin Ling (2003-9), Geraint Williams (2009-10), Russell Slade (2010-14), Mauro Milanese (2014-15), Ian Hendon (2015-16), Andy Hassenthaler (2016), Alberto Cavasin (2016), Andy Edwards (2016), Daniel Webb (2017), Omer Riza (2017), Justin Edinburgh (2017-19)
FA Trophy; finalists - 19

Info - several years ago, Brighton went up to 'past its sell-by' Brisbane Road, in our original '00/01 promotion season. At the very top of div3, it was Chesterfield who led by 16 points from little old us on 61 points. Leyton Orient were in a play-off slot and also needed results to maintain a viable challenge, hopefully for attaining higher things themselves. Nearly 3000 Brighton fans turned up to double bust their usual away allocation and boost a mediocre gate, where there used to be a 13000 capacity. That first new stand had been built behind the south goal, to replace open terrace earthworks and big plans were afoot to redevelop the rest of their out of date ground. Over those years since, Orient received local authority approval to sort out decrepit north terraces and ancient west stand.
At one stage in proceedings it was known as the not-much-room stadium, when capacity was reduced to 5000 due to major works ahead. Part of the site was sold to a property developer and a nine million pound scheme was launched to transform the old place. During seasons that followed only 700 visitors could be accommodated, so it was just as well BHA were in the Championship and able to visit pukka stadiums on mass. Anyway a sizeable west stand eventually went up and suddenly, a huge banked terrace had become a level car-park. Then later a pukka stand in situ. The biggest surprise to locals was to see low rise blocks erected in each corner, that would have had many a suburban NIMBY foaming profusely at their proverbial rear gates. So it was a case of works in progress as Brighton fans arrived at Matchroom Stadium and surveyed a slightly different scene in east London. Even Coronation Gardens was threatened to be bulldozed - was there no end to this madcap pursuit of sport and leisure, or is that an unsuitable complex question?
In '13/14 Os reached p-os in L1 but the next year dropped into L2 for 15/16. At end of the 16/17 season, amid huge irregularities with new ownership at the club, they were again relegated - to the National League. At end of 18/19 O's regained FL status when champs of Nat Lg.

League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; 24, (11, 15, 6, 10, 9, 1 @ nat lg), 22. * * * Promo - '18 NL, relegated - '12 L2
STATUS; the yo-yo reached bottom and began the ascent, going from non-league to the EFL 'pro' version again for 2018.
MANAGER; Sol Campbell (2018), previously Mark Yates (2018), John Askey (2013-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '99/00, '00/01 @ L2
League Two - somewhere up north.
Silkmen made a leap of faith from the Conference to FL in 1997 when Albion lost our old Goldstone Ground. They went straight up to div2 but came back down as Micky Adams put together a squad for starting the Withdean era.
99/00 - In div3, 14/11/99 A 1-1. 21/3/00 H 5-2. B'ton 11th 67pt, Macc Town 13th 65pt.
00/01 - results, 11/11/00 A 0-0. 28/4/01 H 4-1. B'ton 1st promoted, Macc Tn 14th 56pt.
C21 EFL record: P4 . W2 D0 L0 . F9 A3 . W0 D2 L0 . F1 A1 . Pt8 GD+6

EFL L2 record from '99/00 to 18/19; 13, 14, 13, 16, 20, 5, 17, 22, 19, 20, 19, 15, 24, (11, 15, 6, 10, 9, 1 @ Conf), 22
EFL: best = 5th L2 '05, worst = 15th conf '14, promo - '18 NL, p-os - '05 L2, rel - '12 L2
PAST Managers; Sammy McIlroy (1993-2000), Gil Prescott (2000-1), David Moss (2001-3), John Askey (2003-4), Brian Horton (2004-6), Paul Ince (2006-7), Ian Brightwell (2007-8), Keith Alexander (2008-10), Gary Simpson (2010-11), Brian Horton (2011-12), Steve King (2012-13), John Askey (2013-18)
FA Trophy finalists 2017.

Info - Moss Rose is a small capacity venue being just above the FL limit. The best the club can do is flirt with League2 p-os and hope for enough support to change their luck, or at least keep 'em in the league. By start of '10/11 Macc were still a lower order fourth tier outfit. But luck ran out in '11/12 - relegated to non-league. For '12/13 they were mid-table Blue Square Prem (National League). Silkmen were promoted to L2 as non-league champions in 17/18. They only just hung on to FL status in 18/19.

League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; (3, 1 @ nat lg) 11, 21, 12, 12, 8, 4. * * * Promo - '13 NL
STATUS; slipped out of the FL during the noughties but since regained their place among those L2 regulars.
MANAGER; John Dempster (2019), previously David Flitcroft (2018-19), Steve Evans (2016-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '99/00, '00/01 @ L2
League Two - fans wanted to see more fight.
Stags bounded around in div3 (L2) at Field Mill, while Albion moved from Goldstone to Gillingham, then back home to temporary accomodation. Micky Adams thus kick-started the Withdean era.
99/00 - in div3 (L2) 7/8/99 H 6-0. 1/2/00 A 1-0. B'ton 11th 67pt, M'fld 17th 56pt.
00/01 - in div3 16/12/00 A 2-0. 31/3/01 H 2-0. B'ton 1st promoted, M'fld 13th 58pt.
C21 EFL record: P4 . W2 D0 L0 . F8 A0 . W0 D0 L2 . F0 A3 . Pt6 GD+5

EFL L2 record '99/00 to 18/19: 17, 13, 3, (23 @ L1), 5, 13, 16, 17, 23, (12, 9, 13, 3, 1 @ Conf) 11, 21, 12, 12, 8, 4
EFL: best = 23rd L1 '03, worst = 13th conf, promo - '13 cn, '02 L2, p-os - '12 cn, '04, '19 L2, rel - '03 L1, '08 L2
PAST Managers; Paul Cox (2011-14), Adam Murray (2014-16), Steve Evans (2016-18), David Flitcroft (2018-19)
FA Trophy finalists 2011.

Info - Town came to visit Albion in FA Cup round3 of '07/8 season and deservedly went on to round4. This got 'em some much needed extra dosh because the east midlands club was in crisis. Stags fans wanted the owner out and were watching their League2 eleven staring at relegation to Blue Square Prem. They duly went down, well adrift of safety and facing an uncertain future. In '9/10 Stags were now one of the regular non-league crowd. In '10/11 they finished 13th in Blue Square Premier. They reached p-o in '11/12 (3rd). For '12/13 Mansfield won the BSP (National League) to regain FL status. Stags were just outside L2 playoffs in 17/18 but inside for 18/19..

League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; 15, 16, 18, 11, 21, 18, 22, 18
STATUS; made it into the EFL 3rd div but serially struggles to retain continuity this decade.
MANAGER; Jim Bentley (2011)
Falmer years - no meetings.
Withdean era - no meetings.

EFL L2 record from '01/2 to 18/19; (6, 2, 7, 7, 5, 3 @ Conf), 11, 11, 4, 20, 15, 16, 18, 11, 21, 18, 22, 18
EFL: best = 4th L2 '10, worst = 7th conf '04 & '05, promo - '07 conf, p-os - '10 L2
PAST Managers; Jim Harvey (1994-2006), Sammy McIlroy (2006-11), Jim Bentley (2011)

Info - they got into the FL and finished in lg2 mid table for '07/8 & '08/9. In '9/10 under ex-pro Sammy McIlroy, the north-west coast outfit reached L2 play-offs in an eight way finish for those four spots. For '10/11 Morecambe only finished 20th and '11/12 thru '14/15 they finished mid table. But Shrimps fell into the bottom four for 15/16. At end of 18/19 they were still a lower order L2 outfit.

League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; (19, 3 @ nat lg), 14, 9, 22, 22, 11, 7. * * * Promo - '13 NL
STATUS; a name from the previous century who 'disappeared' but regained EFL level and so far so good.
MANAGER; Michael Flynn (2017)
Falmer years - no league meetings. EFL Cup - see Falmer Years, previous encounters.
Withdean era - no meetings.

EFL L2 record from 99/00 to 18/19; (7, 10, 5, 10, 7 @ SLP), (18, 18, 6, 9, 10, 1 @ Conf S), (9, 19, 3, @ nat lg), 14, 9, 22, 22, 11, 7
EFL: best = 7th L2 '19, worst = 19th NL '12, promo - '13 NL, p-os - '19 L2
PAST Managers; Peter Beadle (2005-8), Dean Holdsworth (2008-11), Anthony Hudson (2011), Justin Edinburgh (2011-15), Terry Butcher (2015), John Sheridan (2015-16), Warren Feeney (2016), James Bittner (2016), Graham Westley (2016-17),
FA Trophy finalists 2012.

Info - after more than two decades out of Pro football divisions, County regained FL status in 2014 after rising from lower Conference ranks of the non-league pyramid. They twice beat the drop from L2 in 15/16 & 16/17. At end of 18/19 County reached L2 p-os.

League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; (20, 6, 21, 12, 1 @ L2), (16, 22 @ L1), 15. * * * Promo - '16 L2, relegated - '18 L1
STATUS; league 1 or 2 yo-yo club which currently is on the drop, waiting for the line to pay out.
MANAGER; Keith Curle (2018), previously Dean Austin (2018), Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink (2017-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '99/00 @ L2, '01/2, '06/7, '07/8, '08/9 @ L1
Leagues One & Two - not that high in the order.
Northampton Town first met Brighton at Withdean in late November 1999, when found in old div3 (L2) after falling from div2 (L1) the season before. Nearly 6000 conglomerated at our newly revamped athletics arena and more would have mixed in but for local restrictions on our capacity.
99/00 - they won both contests that initial term; 0-1 at home and at Withdean 1-3 - certainly looked the best outfit we'd seen. Town went on to go straight back up a flight again but it took Micky Adams' Brighton another year to join them. At least a trip there wasn't too far for Sussex residents, southern Seagulls or midlands exiles north of Watford Gap. Therefore we could come at 'em from all angles of the country.
01/2 - Albion got off to a reasonable start in div2 (L1) but lost a first fixture at Northampton 2-0. By the time we renewed winning acquaintance 2-0 after New Year postponement, Peter Taylor's Albion were top two and Cobblers bottom four, as we marched past to higher echelons of div1 (Championship). Whilst B'ton floated between League1 and the Championship in the noughties, N'ampton yo-yo'd alternatively lg1 or lg2. After four seasons it was business as usual.
06/7 - Dean Wilkins Brighton got four points from encounters. Northampton manager John Gorman said, 'it's only a level higher but there is so much more football played in this league. Ambitions here are to go further - the Championship is where everybody wants to be'.
07/8 - the following year Town were our first home fixture and lost 2-1 but only 5000 turned up to W'dean, as Brighton fans knew third-tier footy when they saw it. At Sixfields we lost 1-0 on a Jan nite to remember for all the wrong reasons. We got to 7th, they reached 9th.
08/9 - under Micky Adams again we went to theirs in Sept and got a 2-2 draw after leading twice. He got sacked and in Feb it was 1-1 at W'dean. Although level pegging, we stayed up but they didn't.
C21 EFL record: P10 . W2 D2 L1 . F7 A6 . W1 D1 L3 . F4 A6 . Pt12 GD-1

EFL L2 records from '99/00 to 18/19; 3, (18, 20, 24 @ L1), 6, 7, 2, (14, 9, 21 @ L1), 11, 16, 20, 6, 21, 12, 1, (16, 22 @ L1), 15
EFL: best = 9th L1 '08, worst = 21st L2 '14, promo - '00, '06, '16 L2, p-os - '04, '05, '13 L2, rel - '03, '09, '18 L1
PAST Managers; Kevin Wilson (1999-2001), Kevan Broadhurst (2001-3), Terry Fenwick (2003) Martin Wilkinson (2003), Colin Calderwood (2003-6), John Gorman (2006), Stuart Gray (2007-9), Ian Sampson (2009-11), Gary Johnson (2011), Aidy Boothroyd (2012-13), Chris Wilder (2014-16), Rob Page (2016), Justin Edinburgh (2017), Dean Austin (2018), Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink (2017-18)

Info - in October 2006, Paul Sturrock lost his job making Wednesday into a big club again. Sheff Wed were well beaten 4-0 at Colchester in front of 5000 at an er, Championship venue. The Scot had success with Plymouth and supposedly could handle sleeping giants. He actually ended up back there. And the point is? There are probably more questions than answers. Brighton fans are very familiar with those perpetual managerial merry-go-rounds. The music even stopped here for a while in '06/7, after being a little off-key but a change of gaffer in mid flight had cranked up revs again following a faltering restart. BHA are of course not the only club to appoint a smart new operator. A rough ride on top of League 2 at the end of '05/6 season, saw bosses at both champions Carlisle and runners-up Northampton, leave for bigger and better Champ's carousels. John Gorman who had been circulating at Wycombe Wanderers, made the play-off round-abouts. He might have subsequently gone up with and on to Cumbria, being an ex-player of some repute and well rounded to boot. However, it was Cobblers to all that circus and he became head hurdy-gurdy man sited in south midlands Sixfields. In '9/10 Cobblers finished in top half of L2 but slightly short of being real p-o contenders. For '10/11 & '11/12 they were merely mid to lower table. But in '12/13 reached p-o final, although lost out on promo. Town won the L2 title in '15/16 but quickly returned there at end of 17/18. In 18/19 they finished in solid midtable.

OLDHAM Back to Top
League TWO record from11/12 to 18/19; (16, 19, 15, 15, 17, 17, 21 @ L1), 14. * * * Relegated - '18
STATUS; an old northern club with history. Sadly the glory days are long gone.
MANAGER; Laurent Banide (2019), previously Pete Wild (2019), Paul Scholes (2019), Frankie Bunn (2018), Richie Wellens (2017-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '01/2, '03/4, '06/7, '07/8, '08/9, '09/10, '10/11 @ L1
League One - stuck on the big-city outer ring, going round and round.
Just why Oldham failed to raise their game in the Withdean era is one of those northern conundrums, like how did Burnley do in the Championship? Athletic came down from old div1 (Champ's) in 1997 and kind of stayed. In fact they were close to a second drop before turn of the century.
01/2 - in October Oldham first came to Withdean for div2 (L1) to get beaten 3-0, in a year they hoped to at least make play-offs. Up at their place in February Brighton got beat 2-0 but Peter Taylor still went on to take the title, while Latics 9th 70pts, reached top ten.
03/4 - two seasons later we were back in tier three (L1) following relegation and met Oldham on opening day because they'd blown p-o semi-finals. Steve Coppell's Brighton won 1-3 away that Aug - ooohhh! We next scraped a goal-less draw at home in Jan - oh no! Athletic again had a mediocre term in 15th 57pts but Mark McGhee's Albion got to play at the Millennium Stadium, which was lots of fun and games.
06/7 - Brighton rejoined League1 for and Oldham were still bloody there. Just before Xmas Dean Wilkins side drew 1-1 at cold Boundary Park but bombed 1-2 in our last home game. Brighton's season was very forgetable 18th 52pts, while Oldham made 6th 75pts, p-o's but guess what?
07/8 - Brighton again drew 1-1 but well after Xmas/New Year up north. A month later in Feb we edged it 1-0 at dreary Tongdean Lane. BHA = 7th 69pts, OA = 8th 67pts.
08/9 - under Micky Adams second coming, we went north in Dec and hey, drew 1-1 again. Under Russ Slade down south in April we won 3-1. Athletic finished in 10th with 65pts. B'ton got to 16th with 52pts and Slade got a job.
9/10 - at ours we lost 0-2 in October. But Gus Poyet was in charge up north for a 2-0 win in March. BHA finished 13th 59pts, OA only got to 16th 52pts.
10/11 - at W'dean in Sept we won 2-1 with a last kick goal. At BP we won 0-1 in March and went clear at the top. B'ton ended as L1 champions, Latics slumped to 17th.
C21 EFL record: P14 . W4 D1 L2 . F10 A6 . W3 D3 L1 . F9 A6 . Pt25 GD+7

EFL L1 record from '99/00 to 18/19; 14, 15, 9, 5, 15, 19, 10, 6, 8, 10, 16, 17, 16, 19, 15, 15, 17, 17, 21, (14 @ L2)
EFL: best = 5th L1 '03, worst = 14th L2 '19, p-os - '03 & '07 L1, rel - '18 L1
OLDHAM ATHLETIC were one of the original 22 clubs to play in the new Premier League of 1992.
PAST Managers; Andy Ritchie (1998-2001), Mick Wadsworth (2001-2), Iain Dowie (2002-3), Brian Talbot (2004-5), Ronnie Moore (2005-6), John Sheridan (2006-9), Joe Royle (2009), Dave Penney (2009-10), Paul Dickov (2010-13), Lee Johnson (2013-15), Darren Kelly (2015), David Dunn (2015-16), John Sheridan (2016), Steve Robinson (2016), John Sheridan (2017), Richie Wellens (2017-18), Frankie Bunn (2018), Paul Scholes (2019), Pete Wilde (2019)

Background - Athletic ran out of steam in 1997, falling from div1 (Champ's) and bumped around in mid-table for a few years. In 2003, Oldham played QPR for a great chance to visit Wales in May but lost 2-1, over two north vs south legs of p-o semi-finals. This then typical outfit of Championship wannabes still had ideas above their station. For some reason, plans for construction of a new 15000 seat ground in conjunction with a local Rugby League club were abandoned. Instead, proposals for redevelopment of Boundary Park were then floated, with a figure of 80 million pounds quoted to rebuild. An average 6k-ish audience might need to pay more than a couple of notes per ticket to raise necessary funds.
When players walked out at Withdean against Oldham on 28/4/07 they knew Dean Wilkins shoulda been in charge until '09/10. Many wondered if they might actually see pre-season for '07/8 in a suburban sports complex next to a nature reserve. Dick Knight said, 'I will now begin planning for squad strengthening to mount a serious challenge to get back to the Championship' He didn't exactly say in twelve months time. Wilkins and Knight, plus most of expired and perhaps wavering season-ticket holders, knew Albion hadn't a hope of climbing out of League1 without substantial money on the table. At those Withdean prices, more threats of future third-tier participation could herald a punters backlash, especially when derisory domestic results might repeat a pathetic pattern as in '06/7. Yeah, '08/9 and '9/10 were also nothing to write home about, even though both experienced Chairman and rookie Manager changed.
Oldham were pretty permanent in L1, although mostly found in the bottom half places year on year this century. In 17/18 Latics were relegated from L1. At end of 18/19 Athletic were comfortable in L2 midtable.

PLYMOUTH Back to Top
League ONE record from 11/12 to 18/19; (21, 21, 10, 7, 5, 2 @ L2), 7, 21. * * * promo - '17 L2, rel - '19 L1
STATUS; always potential for level2 given the club's regional situation but it's never quite so straightforward is it?
MANAGER; Ryan Lowe (2019), Kevin Nancekivell (2019), Derek Adams (2015-19)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '99/00, '00/01 @ L2, '03/4, '04/5, '05/6, '10/11 @ L1
Leagues One & Two - wanted a Sound prospect.
Argyle were a club that had a half decent catchment area like Albion. They seemed to fall on hard times when we had earlier and rise in corresponding fashion to tier two.
99/00 - Micky Adams kicked off the Withdean era in div3 (L2) with a remit to hit the heights in conjunction with Falmer. He set off down a long road; 5/9/99 A 3-3 - attacking play or what? Back in Sussex reality set in; 12/2/00 H 1-1 - Zamora the scorer. B'ton got to 11th on 67pts closely followed by P'mouth 12th 66pts - dual mediocrity.
00/01 - Adams bought Zamora for 100k and a few more to boot. We were on a roll; 24/10/00 H 2-0 - Zamora got one. Down in Devon for a promo party; 14/4/01 A 0-2 - Zamora got another. B'ton won the title and Micky milked it. P'mouth were 13th on 58pts, with ideas for later. Two seasons afterwards these two potential Championship 'heavy-weights' met in lowly div2 (L1)
03/4 - campaign. Steve Coppell was gaffer when off early to Home Park; 30/8/03 A 3-3 - you certainly couldn't call us perfidious. Mark McGhee came in to keep the dream alive; 31/1/04 H 2-1 - perfectly pleasant W'dean win. B'ton made p-os in 4th 77pts. P'mouth took a direct Pilgrims route to the Championship as top of division. Albion joined 'em via p-o final victory.
04/5 - was our second go at higher level. For our first home match; 10/8/04 H 0-2 - poor, purely pitiful play. For the re-match against green rivals; 12/3/05 A 5-1 - caught napping and sunk all hands. B'ton survived in 20th with 51pts, P'mouth 17th on 53pts.
05/6 - results were tough for teams trying to consolidate. Another summer fixture; 29/8/05 H 2-0 - attacked and coulda got 5. The following spring again; 4/3/06 A 1-0 - a fluke meant defeat. B'ton finished bottom and were relegated. P'mouth were in the safety zone of lower middle order fodder 14th 56pt.
10/11 - under Gus Poyet, we went to Home Park in Sept and won 0-2. At W'dean we done the double 4-0 in Feb. B'ton went up with the L1 title but Pilgrims dropped to L2 from 23rd deducted 10pts and all.
C21 EFL record: P12 . W4 D1 L1 . F11 A4 . W2 D2 L2 . F11 A12 . Pt21 GD+6

Championship record from '99/00 to 18/19; (12, 12, 1 @ L2), (8, 1 @ L1), 17, 14, 11, 10, 21, 23, (23 @ L1), (21, 21, 10, 7, 5, 2 @ L2), (7, 21 @ L1)
EFL: best = 10th C '08, worst = 21st L2 '12 & '13, promo - '02, '17 L2, '04 L1, p-os - '15 & '16 L2, rel - '10 C, '11, '19 L1
PAST Managers; Kevin Hodges (1998-2000), Paul Sturrock (2000-4), Bobby Williamson (2004-5), Tony Pulis (2005-6), Ian Holloway (2006-7), Paul Sturrock (2007-9), Paul Mariner (2009-10), Peter Reid (2010-12), Carl Fletcher (2012), John Sheridan (2012-15), Derek Adams (2015-19)

Info - in '06/7 and '07/8, Pilgrims were mid table or better in the Championship. Scot and Argyle fancier Paul Sturrock, had gone back to a club he really liked. As Albion laboured in League1, Adams suddenly returned to start a second revolution. There are other certain similarities between these clubs apart from Withdean era back-back lower league titles. Both are on the edge geographically, with cities of open, hilly, sprawling seaside aspects on the English channel. Their catchment areas are also large enough to flirt with dreams of national elite status. Incredibly Plymouth purchased Home Park in this period - against a trend or what? Brighton meanwhile waited for Falmer as a reality. Both outfits aimed to get back at level2 but staying there - is it deemed successful enough?
In '9/10, Pilgrims sunk again, from second bottom in the Championship. Administration scuppered any further plans of a return voyage. In '10/11 they beached in L1 and for '11/12 Argyle nearly went out of business in L2 but survived... and reached the p-o final in 15/16. Then went one better in 16/17 with auto-promo as runners-up. At end of 18/19 Pilgrims were relegated from L1.

PORT VALE Back to Top
League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; 12, 3, (9, 18, 12, 21 @ L1), 20, 20. * * * Promo - '13 L2, relegated - '17 L1
STATUS; another club with history at higher level but one who settled at lower league as befits their true standing.
MANAGER; John Askey (2019), previously Neil Aspin (2017-19)
Falmer years - no league fixtures. FA Cup - see Falmer Years, previous encounters.

WITHDEAN era - '01/2, '03/4, '06/7, '07/8 @ L1
League One - a crack or two appears in the Potteries.
It's a fact that Valiants were many years a div1 (Championship) club until 2001, while Albion blundered about before escaping from div3 (L1).
01/2 - Seagulls then flew through old div2 (L2) when Peter Taylor took over from Micky Adams in October. By November Albion went to Vale and won 0-1. They got back to us on the last day during late April and also lost 1-0. BHA were promoted as champions while PV ended 14th 57pts in mid-table.
03/4 - a couple of seasons later, Mark McGhee was in charge as BHA returned to div2. In December both clubs got a point at W'dean from a 1-1 draw - valiant p-pots. Believe it or not, 1-1 in the Potteries in March completed our H&A brace - potted a pt valiantly. Albion reached p-os but Vale 7th 73pts only just failed - by GD.
06/7 - Dean Wilkins was gaffer when we met again in a pre-Xmas League1 game at Burslem and lost 2-1. A month later in Jan at W'dean, we shared a 0-0 draw. Both sides finished in mid table mediocrity, BHA 18th 52pts, PV 12th 60pts .
07/8 - the following season, Albion visited Vale in October an nicked a 0-1 win. They did us over like April fools 2-3 at Withdean. It cost us a p-o slot 7th 69pts but they still went down fighting 23rd 38pts.
C21 EFL record: P8 . W1 D2 L1 . F4 A4 . W2 D1 L1 . F4 A3 . Pt12 GD+1

EFL L2 records from '99/00 to 18/19; (23 @ Champ's), (11, 14, 17, 7, 18, 13, 12, 23 @ L1), 18, 10, 11, 12, 3, (9, 18, 12, 21 @ L1), 20, 20
EFL: best = 23rd C '00, worst = 7th L1 '04, promo - '13 L2, rel - '00 C, '08, '17 L1
PAST Managers; Brian Horton (1999-2004), Martin Foyle (2004-7), Lee Sinnott (2007-8), Dean Glover (2008-9), Micky Adams (2009-10), Jim Gannon (2011), Micky Adams (2011-14), Rob Page (2014-16), Bruno Ribeiro (2016), Michael Brown (2017), Neil Aspin (2017-19)
EFL Trophy; winner - 00/01

Info - Martin Foyle took over from ex-Albion boss Brian Horton in 2004 as PV had fallen to languish in lg1 (div2) following a number of years in the Championship (div1). They were struggling to survive, though made it through Administration and slowly stabilised. From 2007 Vale were bringing on youngsters in similar vane to Albion as a way forward. For teams like us, it's probably the only method of progress. Foyle said, 'I feel a need to throw the kids in. It will be sink or swim but we have confidence in them benefiting from playing a better standard of football'. You could almost quote BHA management voicing opinion along those lines as well. Vale unfortunately seemed to suffer at the gate, which generally appeared to be a trend across the board involving grass-roots footy around this time. Well, well, Micky Adams ended up there and in '9/10 made a late push for play-offs. Valiants finished 10th four points adrift. But you know what he did at BHA in '00/01 from a similar starting spot. Adams baled out for Sheff Utd in '10/11 and Vale finished 11th in L2. He actually went back to Burslem for '11/12, although the club went into administration. In '12/13 Vale got auto-promo to L1. But were relegated to L2 in 16/17. At end of 18/19 they were left a lower order outfit.

SALFORD Back to Top
Non League record from 08/9 to 18/19; (20, 11, 12, 13, 16, 12, 1 @ Northern Div1N), (3 @ Northern Prem), (4, 1 @ Nat Lg N), 3 @ Nat Lg. * Promo - '15, '16, '18, '19
STATUS; had ex-PL pros input and got mercurial rise to be crowned kings of the north at lev6.
Manager; GrahamAlexander (2018), Bernard Morley & Anthony Johnson (2015-18), Phil Power (2013-15), Darren Sheridan (2012-13).
Falmer Years & Withdean Era - no meetings.
Footnote: after previous quick-fire elevation, at end of 18/19 City reached Nat Lg p-os, won the final and elevated to EFL status. Such is power of elite investment.

League ONE record from 11/12 to 18/19; 18, 21, (2 @ L2) 16, 7, 3, 5, 23. * * * Promo - '14 L2, relegated - '13, '19 L1
STATUS; fill a hole in the northeast and capable of making level2 occasionally.
MANAGER; Paul Hurst (2019), previously Stuart McCall (2018-19), Nick Daws (2018), Graham Alexander (2016-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '00/01 @ L2, '06/7, '08/9 @ L1
Leagues One & Two - any old Iron oop north.
United played in div3 (L2) usually but went up for a term as Micky Adams wound up affairs for BHA at Gillingham.
00/1 - Adams was still head honcho as he kicked on an ongoing first revolution at Withdean; 14/10/00 H 0-0. Back at Glanford Park, 6/3/01 A 1-2. Albion rampaged to the title, while United completed 10th with 65pts.
06/7 - Dean Wilkins was in charge for a League1 campaign; coincidentally 14/10/06 A 2-1, 17/3/07 H 1-1. B'ton scraped 18th place, Iron hammered a way to no.1 spot.
08/9 - they stuffed us 1-4 at ours in Sept under Adams rev2. It was bad too under Russ Slade in Mar losing 2-0 up north. But we stayed up and they went up via p-o final.
C21 EFL record: P6 . W0 D2 L1 . F2 A5 . W1 D0 L2 . F3 A5 . Pt5 GD-5

EFL L1 record from '99/00 to 18/19; 23, (10, 8, 5, 22, 2 @ L2), 12, 1, (23 @ Champ's), 6, (20, 24 @ Champ's), 18, 21, (2 @ L2) 16, 7, 3, 5, 23
EFL: best = 20th C '10, worst = 22nd L2 '04, promo - '05, '14 L2, '07, '09 L1, p-os - '03 L2, '17 & '18 L1, rel - '00, '08, '11 C, '13, '19 L1
PAST Managers; Brian Laws (1997-2006), Nigel Adkins (2006-10), Ian Barraclough (2010-11), Alan Knill (2011-12), Brian Laws (2013), Russ Wilcox (2013-14), Mark Robins (2014-16), Graham Alexander (2016-18), Nick Daws (2018), Stuart McCall (2018-19),
EFL Trophy; finalist - 08/09

Info - north Lincolnshire had occasion to suspend disbelief in '02/3, when Scunthorpe were versus Lincoln for a place in the div3 p-o final. Unfortunately Iron cracked and they had to wait until '04/5 for promotion to League1. Brighton were also something of a yo-yo club, having been 3 times in the Championship in noughties interim seasons. Scunny got to tier two for one season but were relegated again in '07/8. But deja vu didn't prevail coz in '9/10, Scunthorpe held on to a Championship place. Maybe we can play host to 'em at Falmer one day... or maybe not, Scunny got relegated in '10/11 from bottom place. And flopped again in '12/13 when dropping from L1 into L2. Then followed a quick promo for '13/14 back to L1. Irons reached p-os in 16/17 & 17/18 but were relegated to L2 again at end of 18/19.

League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; (6, 18, 24 @ L1), 6, 18, 10, 16, 10. * * * Relegated - '14 L1
STATUS; gained EFL fixtures eventually but it took them to a whole new level, which is hard to maintain consistently.
MANAGER; Dino Maamria (2018), previously Darren Sarll (2016-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.
Withdean era - no meetings.

EFL L1 record from '03/4 to 18/19; (8, 5, 6, 8, 6, 5, 1 @ Conf), (6 @ L2), 6, 18, 24, (6, 18, 10, 16, 10 @ L2)
EFL best = 6th L1 '12, worst = 8th conf '04 & '07, promo - '10 conf, '11 L2, p-os - '12 L1, '15 L2, rel - '14 L1
PAST Managers; Graham Westley (2003-6), Mark Stimson (2006-7), Peter Taylor (2007-8), Graham Westley (2008-11), Gary Smith (2011-13), Graham Westley (2013-15), Teddy Sherringham (2015-16), Darren Sarll (2016-18)
FA Trophy winners 2007 & 2009, finalists 2002 & 2010.

Info - Boro were in the Conference during the nineties but were denied the eventual climb into League Two because of ground issues. Following improvements the non-league outfit then attained back to back promotions in '9/10 & '10/11, reaching L1 p-o for '11/12. They were relegated to L2 in '13/14. At end of 18/19 Boro just missed p-os.

SWINDON Back to Top
League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; 1, (6, 8, 4, 16, 22 @ L1), 9, 13. * * * Relegated - '17 L1
STATUS; had their trials & tribulations over this century and history suggests it is not done yet awhile.
MANAGER; Richie Wellens (2018), previously Phil Brown (2018), David Flitcroft (2017-18)
Falmer years - no league fixtures. EFL Cup - see Falmer Years, previous encounters.

WITHDEAN era - '01/2, '03/4, '07/8, '08/9, '09/10, '10/11 @ L1
League One - round and round as if by magic.
In 2001 we joined them in div2 (L1). Brighton had just gained promo from div3 (L2) and Swindon were relegated from div1 (Champ's) a year beforehand.
01/2 - an exciting season for BHA saw manager Peter Taylor share points on each meeting. It was 1-1 at end of Nov in Wiltshire and 0-0 for the last home game in mid April at W'dean. Town finished mid table, while we went up again to tackle bigger fish.
03/4 - two terms and three managers later in L1, Albion drew 2-2 when they visited us in Sept - almost silly season. At tail end of Dec we lost 2-1 at the County Ground - repeat performance. But it didn't stop there as by end of this season they became Mark McGhee's p-o opponents. We went on to Wales, they kinda Wilted.
07/8 - Town were back in League1 with us but in ownership crisis. Dean Wilkins BHA won 0-3 at their ground in December. At our place for a cold March Easter, BHA won 2-1. Swindon got to 13th, Albion 7th to break a promo sequence against 'em.
08/9 - we went to theirs next (L1) in late Dec during Micky Adams 2nd regime and won 0-2. In April under Russ Slade at W'dean we lost 2-3 in a d-z scrap. Danny Wilson got 'em to 15th with 53pts. Slade also got a job when reaching 16th on 52pts.
9/10 - under Gus Poyet, it was a 2-1 loss at theirs in Dec. And a 0-1 loss at ours in March. BHA finished 13th 59pts, Swindon were 5th 82pts and took part in p-o's.
10/11 - on opening day Gus Poyet took us to the County Ground and won 1-2. At W'dean in March we won 2-1. BHA became L1 numero uno and promoted, while Robins dropped into L2 from bottom of the div.
C21 EFL record: P12 . W2 D2 L2 . F8 A8 . W3 D1 L2 . F10 A6 . Pt18 GD+4

EFL L1 record from '99/00 to 18/19; (24 @ Champ's), 20, 13, 10, 5, 12, 23, (3 @ L2), 13, 15, 5, 24, (1 @ L2), 6, 8, 4, 16, 22, (9, 13 @ L2)
EFL: best = 24th C '00, worst = 13th L2 '19, promo - '07, '12 L2, p-os - '04, '10, '13, '15 L1, rel - '00 C, '06, '11, '17 L1
PAST Managers; Jimmy Quinn (1998-2000), Colin Todd (2000), Andy King (2000-5), Iffy Onuora (2005-6), Dennis Wise (2006), Paul Sturrock (2006-7), Danny Wilson (2008-11), Paul Hart (2011), Paulo Di Canio (2011-13), Kevin MacDonald (2013), Mark Cooper (2013-15), Martin Ling (2015), Luke Williams (2016-17), David Flitcroft (2017-18), Phil Brown (2018)
EFL Trophy; finalist - 11/12

Info - Swindon started the '07/8 season as 40-1 outsiders to head League 1 come May. Paul Sturrock their then recent manager left to return hurriedly to Plymouth and the club was in crisis at Board level downwards to boot. On the pitch they fell to 14th with a home record of W5 D2 L2 F16 A7, when Brighton went there one December Saturday and got a right result. By end of November, Town had beaten West Country yokels Bristol Rovers, drew against Orient but lost at home to Doncaster. Prior at end of October, Swindon also beat Tranmere and a crushing victory over Gillingham saw them in a p-o position early in that month. Previously in September they also trounced Bournemouth, while Yeovil snatched a win but Crewe forced a draw at their place. Earlier they did for Luton in August. For a while following B'ton's visit, Town's future was definitely in some doubt. In finding new owners, Swindon seemed able to reproduce a bit of magic as of old and were still on the roundabout, looking for the right road for Town. But in football, you just never can be sure of the way it will go.
In '11/12 Robins bobbed back to L1 as champions of L2. And made L1 p-os twice by 15/16. Then it went sour again and they had red shirts & faces when relegated to L2 in 16/17. At end of 18/19 Robins were at the midtable mark.

WALSALL Back to Top
League ONE record from 11/12 to 18/19; 19, 9, 13, 14, 3, 14, 19, 22. * * * Relegated - '19 L1
STATUS; one time level2 participants in the early noughties, the midlands club settled at a more convenient standard for this second decade.
MANAGER; Darrell Clarke (2019), previously Dean Keates (2018-19), John Whitney (2016-18)
Falmer years - no league fixtures. EFL Cup - see Falmer Years, previous encounters.

WITHDEAN era - '02/3 @ Champ's, '07/8, '08/9, '09/10, '10/11 @ L1
Championship & League One - hoping to put West Midlands on the map.
Walsall had been a regular div2 club before Y2k when Brighton were also on the up.
02/3 - in div1 on August Bank Holiday, Saddlers first visited Withdean and enjoyed a day out winning 0-2. Two months later, manager Martin Hinshelwood was sacked and Steve Coppell came in. Brighton were really up against it that term but Coppell began a slow improvement. Up at Bescot Stadium at beginning of Feb, Brighton lost 1-0 but were unlucky there. It was defeats to fellow strugglers like the Black Country unit that sealed our relegation fate. For one reason or another small clubs found it very hard to survive in the Championship and with various ups and downs for both, didn't meet 'em again until four years later.
07/8 - under Dean Wilkins in L1 in early Nov Walsall pinched a point in a 1-1 W'dean draw. In March we done 'em 1-2 at windy Bescot. We got near to p-o's, while they were mid table mediocrity.
08/9 - at ours in Sept we got done 0-1 by 9 men - record or what? Micky Adams did his brains. In Mar it was Russ Slade doing his at Banks's, getting beat 3-0. But we stayed up - BHA 16th on 52pts. The WM outfit got to 13th with 61pts.
09/10 - in Aug we hosted 'em on day1 and lost 0-1. Slade shrugged and hoped to do good. He didn't and Gus Poyet took Albion to Bescot in Jan for a 1-2 victory. BHA were 13th 59pts, while WFC made 10th 62pts.
10/11 - again at W'dean in Aug, we won 2-1 under Gus Poyet. Up at Bescot we won 1-3 in April to take the league1 title. Saddlers escaped the drop in 20th place.
C21 EFL records: P10 . W1 D1 L3 . F3 A6 . W3 D0 L2 . F7 A7 . Pt13 GD-3

EFL L1 record from '99/00 to 18/19; (22 @ Champ's), 4, (18, 17, 22 @ Champ's), 14, 24, (1 @ L2), 12, 13, 10, 20, 19, 9, 13, 14, 3, 14, 19, 22
EFL: best = 17th C '03, worst = 1st L2 '07, promo - '01 L1, '07 L2, p-os - '16 L1, rel - '00, '04 C, '06, '19 L1
PAST Managers: Ray Graydon (1998-2002), Colin Lee (2002-4), Paul Merson (2004-6), Richard Money (2006-8), Jimmy Mullen (2008-9), Chris Hutchings (2009-10), Dean Smith (2011-15), Sean O'Driscoll (2015-16), John Whitney (2016-18), Dean Keates (2018-19)
EFL Trophy; finalist - 14/15

Background - bar a bonfire at the bottom of Tongdean Lane, Albion didn't explode like our tier-two meeting, when Walsall dazzled us with smoke and mirrors during Championship days of yesteryear. Martin Hinshelwood was our manager at the time and B'ton's brand new second-level record was a bit of a damp squib to say the least. Bobby Zamora had gotten injured during an initial loss against Norwich in August 2002 and hopes were high that ex-Premiership striker Paul Kitson could be an able replacement. Hinshelwood said on sunny Bank Holiday Monday, 'I have been trying to get Paul for a while. His obvious experience will be a massive benefit to everyone, especially our younger players who are making their mark in the first team.' About six thousand Brighton fans watched Kitson play 45 minutes before substitution by Nathan Jones. He started just two more games until side-lined for quite a period, being prone to injury - on the treatment table, as well as on the pitch. Brighton's form also collapsed and we had to wait for BZ to return and start scoring at higher level.
Unfortunately a lot of damage had been done by late October, as Seagulls continually conspired to be shot down. Hinshelwood was implicated in a seasonal plot to blow up a campaign of consolidation and you know the rest of this sorry saga. Even when Steve Coppell came in with discretion to use gunpowder as necessary, what had happened was regarded as almost treasonable on reaching a momentous Guy Fawkes night of 2002. Ashes of a burn-out finally flickered into flame as Albion got a victory to eventually make early evenings of November days to remember.
In years to 17/18 Saddlers once reached p-os (15/16) but generally were a lower order L1 outfit. But at end of 18/19 they were relegated to L2.

 Back to Top


NATional League record from 11/12 to 18/19; (11, 24 @ L2), (19, 18, 15, 5, 5, 21 @ nat lg). * * * Relegated - '13 L2
STATUS; one time FL fodder in days of yore, Shots are a small National League outfit these days.
MANAGER; Danny Searle (2019), previously Gary Waddock (2016-19)
Falmer years - no meetings

Withdean era - no league meetings.
EFL L2 record from '03/4 to 18/19; (5, 4, 13, 9, 1 @ Conf), 15, 6, 14, 11, 24, (19, 18, 15, 5, 5, 21 @ Nat Lg)
EFL: best = 6th L2 '10, worst = 21st NL, promo - '08 NL, rel - '13 L2
PAST Managers; Terry Brown (2002-7), Gary Waddock (2007-9), Kevin Dillon (2009-11), Dean Holdsworth (2011-13), Andy Scott (2013-15), Barry Smith (2015-16), Gary Waddock (2016-19)

Background - they came back, Terminator style!
The only relevant BHA contest was during Y2k for an FAC round1 tie at the Recreation Ground in front of 7500. Albion won 6-2 backed by over 2000 supporters. Watson 2, Oatway, Carpenter, Wicks and of course Zamora scored. Kuipers let in two.
Going out of business but reforming and still able to exploit the Rec, set Town on a path to resume pukka pro status. The old club was dead and buried in the nineties but rose phoenix like from bottom of a huge non-league pyramid. After winning Blue Square Premier by a mile, Shots returned to the Football League in 2008. They finished mid-table in League2 for their first year back. Shots were relegated back to the Blue Square Prem in 2013. At end of 18/19 Shots were in the d-z for Nat Lg South but kept status due to demotion of Gateshead for NL irregularities.

BARNET Back to Top
NATional League record from 11/12 to 18/19; (22, 23 @ L2), (8, 1 @ Conf), (15, 15, 23 @ L2), 13. * * * Promo - '15 NL, relegated - '13, '18 L2
STATUS; a small tier 4&5 club who yo-yo between lower league and non league regularly.
MANAGER; Darren Currie (2019), previously John Still (2018), Martin Allen (2018), Graham Westley (2018)
Falmer years - no league meetings. EFL Cup - see Falmer Years, previous encounters.

WITHDEAN era - '99/00, '00/01 @ L2
League Two - small but want fayre treatment.
It was during Micky Adams first revolution that we last met Barnet in the league at div3 level (L2).
99/00 - initially against leaders at W'dean; 26/12/99 H 1-1. Later in a BHA revival; 25/3/00 A w 0-1. B'ton ended 11th, Barnet got a p-o spot.
00/01 - it was an Xmas fayre; 26/12/00 A w 0-1. Then super carnival run-in; 14/3/01 H 4-1. B'ton got 1st - promoted, Barnet 24th - relegated to Conference.
C21 EFL record: P4 . W1 D1 L0 . F5 A2 . W2 D0 L0 . F2 A0 . Pt10 GD+5

EFL L2 record from '99/00 to 18/19; 5, 24, (5, 11, 4, 1 @ Conf), 18, 14, 12, 17, 21, 22, 22, 23, (8, 1 @ Conf), 15, 15, 23, (13 @ Nat Lg)
EFL: best = 5th L2 '00, worst = 13th NL, promo - '05, '15 NL, rel - '01, '13, '18 L2
PAST Managers; John Still (1997-2002), Peter Shreeves (2002-3), Martin Allen (2003-4), Paul Fairclough (2004-8), Ian Hendon (2008-10), Mark Stimson (2010-11), Lawrie Sanchez (2011), Martin Allen (2012), Edgar Davids (2012-14), Martin Allen (2014-16), Rossi Eames (2016-17), Kevin Nugent (2017), Mark McGhee (2017-18), John Still (2018), Martin Allen (2018), Graham Westley (2018)

Background - a Tuesday evening in early October so it must be LDV, er sorry, JPT trophy night. It brings Leagues 1 & 2 together plus non-league on a dual regional basis, there being both north and south knockout competitions. In fact Withdean hosted Barnet in Round2 of 2007, having got a bye in September's southern section draw. We had not met since div3 days of 2001 for either a league fixture or cup tie. Brighton then played 'em for a friendly game in July 2003 at Underhill, when they'd fallen into the Conference while we were back again in League1.
At the time, sides like Shrewsbury, Chester and Hereford were also doing stints in non-league. Other ex-div3 clubs such as Torquay, Halifax, Exeter, Cambridge and York and so on were still there - well in that re-jigged Blue Square Premier anyway. Aldershot are a name from old div4 years ago who eventually regained a place back in 2008 to League2, just as Accrington did in 2006 after ages adrift in semi-pro wilderness. Both new boy elevens Morecambe and Dagenham & Redbridge made a fist of it for '07/8 in tier four, while regulars Mansfield and Wrexham looked decidedly shaky and went down.
Barnet, back since 2005, finished in the top half of League 2 and could not be condemned out of turn. A lot of ex-Conference outfits were doing well in League 2, which maybe shows a gap is closing between lesser layers of the football pyramid. What often separates team ability and club success is how each ground can be improved to reach FL standards. Affairs on and off the pitch are inextricably linked and unfortunately in the case of Barnet, forever teetering on the brink. At one point they awaited local authority planning decisions on increasing capacity. It was another stage in a protracted saga of controversy at 'revamping' Underhill. There was talk of a new stadium but as Brighton fans know only too well, don't hold your breath. There are supposedly more jobsworths around the place than in Sussex county hall offices apparently.
In '9/10, Barnet and Cheltenham beat the drop to non-league but Grimsby and Darlington didn't. It was a sad day for the north-east, as Mariners had been a FL club for over a century. For '10/11 Bees escaped relegation again, by one place. They did it again in '11/12 when Hereford and Macclesfield went down. But Barnet dropped into the Blue Square Prem (Conf) in '12/13. The club were then able to use a training centre in Harrow called the Hive for their pitch. They then were duly back in L2 for '15/16. But dropped again to Nat Lg in 17/18. And were midtable in 18/19.

BARROW Back to Top
Non League record from 99/00 to 18/19; (lev6 North Prem 99/00-03/4), (lev6 Conf North 04/5-07/8), (lev5 Conf 08/9-12/13), (11, 1 @ Conf North), 11, 7, 20, 11 @ Nat Lg .
FA Trophy winners 2010.
STATUS; last century a League club at 4th tier but shuffles between 5&6 these days.
Manager; Ian Evatt (2018), previously Adrian Pennock (2017-18), Micky Moore (2017), Paul Cox (2015-17), Darren Edmonson (2013-15), David Bayliss (2007-13).
Falmer years & Withdean era - no meetings.
Footnote: a northwest historical FL club who competed for decades in lowest divisions during the 20th century.

Non league record from 09/10 to 18/19; (5yrs @ Conf South, 2 @ Conf South), 19, 11, 4, 20 @ Nat Lg
STATUS; apparently on the up this decade having elevated from grassroots thru level6 into the 5th tier.
Manager; Luke Garrard (2015), previously Ian Allinson (2008-15).
Falmer Years & Withdea Era - no meetings.

BROMLEY Back to Top
Non League record from 06/7 to 18/19; (2 @ Isthmian Prem), (11, 13, 12, 11, 17, 15, 3, 1 @ Conf South), 14, 10, 9, 12 @ Nat Lg.
FA Trophy finalists 2018
STATUS; rose from baseline of lower level7 into the pyramid and still climbing.
Manager; Neil Smith (2016), Mark Goldberg.
Falmer Years & Withdean Era - no meetings.

NATional League record from 11/12 to 18/19; (22 @ L1), (8, 1 @ L2), (6, 18, 24 @ L1), (24 @ L2), 15. * * * Promo - '14 L2, relegated - '12, '17 L1, '18 L2
STATUS; another club with a share of ups & downs and moving around town.
MANAGER; John Sheridan (2019), previously Martin Allen (2018), Ian Evatt (2018), Jack Lester (2017-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '00/01 @ L2, '01/2, '03/4, '06/7 @ L1
League One - a slight twist of inspiration.
00/01 - Micky Adams was on a promo push, desperate to get BHA out of div3. He took a useful side to Saltergate for a shot at runaway leaders; 21/10/00 A 1-0 - a late goal conceded. The return at bulging W'dean was for the title; 1/5/01 H 1-0 - classic corner. B'ton = champions, C'fld = 3rd with a 9pt penalty for being naughty.
01/2 - the following term in div2 under Peter Taylor, we didn't meet until one of those Friday night pre-Xmas affairs; 21/12/01 H 2-2 - a rare W'dean draw. A month later in Derbyshire one Monday; 21/1/02 A 1-2 - right result. B'ton won the div b2b, C'fld were 18th 0n 52pts.
03/4 - both teams renewed acquaintance in div2. First with Steve Coppell at home on a Tuesday nite; 16/9/03 H 1-0 - here we go. Then Mark McGhee up the M1 Tue eve; 16/3/04 A 0-2 - we were going up. B'ton got to a place in the Championship (div1) again via p-os. C'fld beat the drop, 20th with 51 pts.
06/7 - it was all change in League1 when Wilkins got the poisoned W'dean chalice; 30/9/06 H 1-2 - steep learning curve. Then on that road; 20/1/07 A 0-1 - win in a Peak District gale. B'ton wound up in 18th, C'fld got relegated - 21st with 47pts.
C21 EFL record: P8 . W2 D1 L1 . F5 A4 . W3 D0 L1 . F5 A2 . Pt16 GD+4

EFL L1 records from '99/00 to 18/19; 24, (3 @ L2), 18, 20, 20, 17, 16, 21, (8, 10, 8, 1 @ L2), 22, (8, 1 @ L2) 6, 18, 24, (24 @ L2), (15 @ Nat Lg)
EFL: best = 6th L1 '15, worst = 15th NL '19, promo - '01, '11, '14 L2, p-os - '15 L1, rel - '00, '07, '12, '17 L1, '18 L2
PAST Managers; John Duncan (1993-2000), Nicky Law (2000-1), Dave Rushbury (2002-3), Roy McFarland (2003-7), Lee Richardson (2007-9), John Sheridan (2009-12), Paul Cook (2012-15), Dean Saunders (2015), Danny Wilson (2016), Gary Caldwell (2017), Martin Allen (2018), Ian Evatt (2018), Jack Lester (2017-18)
EFL Trophy; winner - 11/12, finalist - 13/14

Background - Spireites were a div2 club but dropped to tier four by year 2000. They stormed into a clear lead in the lower division from opening weeks of '00/01 and appeared set for the title. Albion were adrift at one stage in early March '01 by 16 points but clear of potential p-o qualifiers. The Football League were investigating Chesterfield's financial irregularities and it imposed a transfer embargo on the league leaders. They were also hit by an injury crisis and their form cracked with news of a 20k fine. Albion and Cardiff began to pull back the points deficit during an action packed run-in. Brighton overhauled Chesterfield with three games to go. We won the league fair and square, waving brown envelopes on an emotional night and you couldn't make it up.
By end of '9/10, 8th placed Spireites just missed out on tight L2 p-o stages by only 2pts. They went better for '10/11 season and won L2 playing at their new stadium. But they were immediately relegated at end of '11/12. Two years later they were back - inspiritional. After 16/17 the yo-yo club went down again to L2. Then straight into the National League at end of 17/18. In 18/19 they were midtable.

CHORLEY Back to Top
National League record from 11/12 to 18/19; x, x, 1 @ Northern Prem, 4, 8, p-o, p-o, 2 @ NLN.
STATUS; came from Northern Prem div1 (tier8) since turn of the century. Elevated from there in 10/11 and again 13/14 into Conference North.
Manager; Jamie Vermiglio (2018-19), Matt Jansen, Garry Flitcroft.
Falmer Years & Withdean Era - no meetings.

DAGENHAM & RED Back to Top
NATional League record from 11/12 to 18/19; (19, 22, 9, 14, 23 @ L2), (4, 11, 18 @ Nat Lg). * * * Relegated - '16 L2
STATUS; a tier 4/5 club who bounce between EFL & non league.
MANAGER; Peter Taylor (2018), previously John Still (2016-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '10/11 @ L1
League One - on me 'ead son!
10/11 - we went to theirs in late March for a rescheduled fixture from Boxing Day. B'ton won 0-1. At ours in April (revised from Jan) we won 4-3 - Gus Poyet was peased; we won promotion and later the L1 title. But Daggers went back to L2 from 21st position.
C21 EFL record: P2 . W1 D0 L0 . F4 A3 . W1 D0 L0 . F1 A0 . Pt6 GD+2

EFL L2 records from '01/2 to 18/19; (3, 5, 13, 11, 10, 1 @ Conf), 20, 8, 7, (21 @ L1), 19, 22, 9, 14, 23, (4, 11, 18 @ Nat Lg)
EFL: best = 7th L2 '10, worst = 18th NL '19, promo - '07 NL, '10 L2, rel - '11 L1, '16 L2
PAST Managers; Gary Hill (1999-2004), John Still (2004-13), Wayne Burnett (2013-15), John Still (2016-18)

Info - read notes for Doncaster to get noughties background. This club was successful in the Conference, if a little unlucky, so justice was done when Daggers gained FL status for '07/8 season. In '08/9 D&R finished just a point short of p-o participation in Lg2, which was very good for an outfit from a steady non-league background. For '9/10, all four L2 p-o clubs were within a point of one another - Reds were one of 'em. Guess what, when they played Rotherham at Wembley? For '11/12 thru '15/16 D&R tried to beat the drop back to non-league. But were there again for 16/17 fnishing midtable in 17/18 & lower order in 18/19.

DOVER Back to Top
Non League record from 08/9 to 18/19; (1 @ Isthmian Prem), (5yrs @ Conf South), 8, 4, 6, 8, 14 @ Nat Lg
STATUS; consistent in lev6 of pyramid and further consolidating in 5th tier.
Manager; Andy Hessenthaler (2018), previously Chris Kinnear (2013-18), Nicky Forster (2011-13), Martin Hayes (2010-11), Ian Hendon (2010), Andy Hessenthaler (2007-10).
Falmer Years & Withdean Era - no meetings.

Non-league record from 99/00 to 18/19; (7, 7, 13, 1P, 4, 3P @ tier 8&7), (8, 15, 6, 3, 11, 8, 12, 4, 1P @ Conf South), 4, 7, 15, 14, 7 @ National League
STATUS; steady rise this century from grassroots to gain a foothold at lev5.
Manager; Ben Strevens (2018), previously Andy Hessenthaler (2017-18), Richard Hill (2017), Martin Allen (2016-17), Ronnie Moore (2016).
Falmer Years & Wihdean Era - no meetings.
Footnote: the Hants outfit reached NL p-os in 14/15, 15/16 & 18/19.

Non-league record from 99/00 to 18/19; (11, 6, 1P @ tier6), (17, 11, 14, 16, 7, 11, 14, 22 @ Conf), (3P @ Conf South), (14, 23 @ Conf), (4, 8, 2, 2P @ Conf South), 6, 8 @ Nat Lg.
STATUS; yo-yo between National Southern region and full England div for 5th tier.
Manager; Garry Hill (2018), previously Daryl McMahon (2015), Jamie Day.
Falmer Years & Withdean Era - no meetings.
FA Trophy winners 2008.
Footnote: United reached NL p-os in 17/18 but were just outside in 18/19.

FYLDE Back to Top
Non League record from 08/9 to 18/19; (1 @ NW Prem), (5yrs @ Northern Prem), (2, 3, 1 @ Nat Lg N), 7, 5 @ Nat Lg
STATUS; on the up this decade but hope to stabilise above level 5.
Manager; Dave Challinor (2011), Kelhan O'Hanlon (2010-11), Mick Fuller (2008-11)
Falmer Years & Withdean Era - no meetings.
Footnote: in 17/18 & 18/19 they reached NL p-os.
FA Trophy; winners - 19

HALIFAX Back to Top
National League record from 11/12 to 18/19; (3, 5 @ nat lg north), 5, 9, 21, (3 @ nat lg north), 16, 16. * * * Promo - '13, '17 NLN, rel - '16 NL
STATUS; once a FL club but nowadays rejigged as regular non league fodder.
MANAGER; tba, previously Jamie Fullarton (2018-19), Billy Heath (2016-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '99/00, '00/01 @ L2
League Two - always teetering on the brink.
Shaymen had been in the Conference when Albion were controvertially departing the Goldstone Ground to play at Priestfield in div3 (L2). Then Micky Adams arrived and before too long things at BHA got that much better.
99/00 - in div3; 11/9/99 A lost 2-1. 4/3/00 H won 2-1. B'ton 11th 67pt, H'fax 18th 54pt.
00/01- results 2/12/00 H won 2-1. 3/5/01 A 0-0. B'ton 1st promoted to div2, H'fax 23rd 47pt relegated to Conf.
C21 EFL record: P4 . W2 D0 L0 . F4 A2 . W0 D1 L1 . F1 A2 . Pt7 GD+1

EFL L2 record '97-'01; (19, 1 @ Conf), 10, 18, 23. From '08/9 to 18/19; (8, 1, 1, 3, 5 @ non-lg N), (5, 9, 21 @ Conf), (3 @ nat lg north), (16, 16 @ nat lg)
PAST Managers; David Worthington (1999), Mark Lillis (1999), Peter Butler (2000), Paul Bracewell (2000), Neil Redfearn (2001), Alan Little (2001), Chris Wilder (2002)
Jim Vince (2008-9), Nigel Jemson (2009), Neil Aspin (2009-15), Darren Kelly (2015), JIm Harvey (2015-16), Billy Heath (2016-18), Jamie Fullarton (2018-19)
FA Trophy winners 2016.

Info - Town returned to the Conference as Albion quickly climbed from lower divisions. They dropped further to Blue Square North and into Administration by '07/8. The Shay was a sadder place and it's still grim up north. In '11/12 re-badged FC Halifax was playing in the non-league second tier, Blue Square North and reached p-os. In '12/13 they were promoted via p-os to BSB Prem - then fell into National League North in 15/16 but won the 2017 p-o final. Shaymen were midtable in 17/18 & 18/19.

Non League record from 04/5 to 18/19; (13yrs @ Conf North), (2 @ Nat Lg N), 6 @ Nat Lg
STATUS; steady as she goes until suddenly riding the wave into higher national waters.
Manager; Simon Weaver (2009-19), Neil Aspin.
Falmer Years & Withdean Era - no meetings.
Footnote: Town reached the Nat Lg p-os in 18/19.

National League record from 11/12 to 18/19; (13, 23 @ L1), (19, 22, 16, 23 @ L2), (15, 17 @ nat lg). * * * Relegated - '13 L1, '17 L2
STATUS; regular tier 3&4 in EFL but fell into National League as the club struggled both on & off the pitch.
MANAGER; Craig Hignett (2019), previously Richard Money (2018), Matthew Bates (2018), Craig Harrison (2017-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '99/00, '00/01 @ L2, '03/4, '07/8, '08/9, '09/10, 10/11 @ L1
Leagues One & Two - plenty of time to reach higher latitudes.
Hartlepool United just got a div3 (L2) play-off place in 2000, while Micky Adams' first-year Withdean-era eleven only got to 11th.
99/00 - at home in November B'ton won 1-0. Up at Victoria Park in March we shared a 0-0 draw.
00/01 - during October it was 4-2 at Tongdean lane on a very wet night. Up at their place in March there was a 2-2 result. Albion got the title, while Pools reached play-offs.
03/4 - in div2 (L1) it was 0-0 away in Sept under Steve Coppell - a hurricane hardly happened. At home in April with Mark McGhee as manager, BHA won 2-0 - with heartfelt hypertension. Brighton reached L1 play-offs, Hartlepool missed on goal difference.
07/8 - we next met Utd in L1, when a Dean Wilkins eleven scored a 1-2 win in the northeast during October. At our place in April it was 2-1 again with another late goal. Pools finished above the drop zone, we got to just outside play-offs.
08/9 - Adams second-coming eleven got done 1-0 in Oct at their Park. At ours in Jan it was 2-1 to a very late winner again. Adams left in Feb, Slade kept us up to be 16th on 52pts. H'pool were 19th with 50pts.
9/10 - against United at W'dean in Oct it was 3-3 and Slade was sacked next day. On Easter Monday, Gus Poyet was gaffero up at Vic Park and got beat 2-0. BHA finished 13th 59pts, Pools 20th 50pts surviving with a 3pts penalty on goal difference.
10/11 - in Nov in the N-E, we lost 3-1. Down south in Feb we won 4-1. Albion got to be champions and Pools were 16th in L1.
C21 EFL record: P14 W6 D1 L0 . F18 A8 . W1 D3 L3 . F5 A9 Pt25 GD+6

EFL L1 record from '99/00 to 18/19; (7, 4, 7, 2 @ L2), 6, 6, 21, (2 @ L2), 15, 19, 20, 16, 13, 23, (19, 22, 16, 23 @ L2), (15, 17 @ nat lg)
EFL: best = 6th L1 '04 & '05, worst = 17th NL, promo - '03, '07 L2, p-os - '00, '01, '02 L2, '04, '05 L1, rel - '06, '13 L1, '17 L2
PAST Managers; Chris Turner (1999-2002), Mike Newell (2002-3), Neale Cooper (2003-5), Martin Scott (2005-6), Danny Wilson (2006-8), Chris Turner (2008-10), Mick Wadsworth (2010-11), Neale Cooper (2011-12), John Hughes (2012-13), Colin Cooper (2013-14), Paul Murray (2014), Ronnie Moore (2014-16), Craig Hignett (2016), Dave Jones (2017), Craig Harrison (2017-18), Matthew Bates (2018), Richard Money (2018)

Info - Pools dropped out of League1 in '05/6 from 21st place, having attained a 50pt 'safe' target. It's the worst place to be in any of tiers, two thru four, as four go down to League2. In '06/7 they were second in the division and amassed 88pts. Ex-Albion old boy Danny Wilson went right up there for a job - and did it right away. In '12/13 Hartlepool dropped into L2. Then by 16/17 they fell into non-league finishing midtable in 17/18 & 18/19..

Non League record from 06/7 to 18/19; (4P @ Southern Lg Prem), (10yrs @ Conf South), (1 @ nat lg S), 12, 19 @ Nat Lg
STATUS; held tier6 credentials for over a decade and hoping to stay at next pay grade.
Manager; Alan Devonshire (2015), previously Johnson Hippolyte.
Falmer Years & Withdean Era - no meetings.

NOTTS CO Back to Top
League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; (7, 12, 20, 21 @ L1), 17, 16, 5, 23. * * * Relegated - '15 L1, '19 L2
STATUS; another up & down outfit who struggle to achieve other than basic lower league existence.
MANAGER; Neil Ardley (2018), Harry Kewell (2018), previously Kevin Nolan (2017-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '01/2, '03/4, 10/11 @ L1
League One - over the river but up the creek.
In '97/8 Magpies had just one season in div3 during Albion's perpetual presence lost in the lowest league. By 2001 Brighton's ball was rolling onwards and upwards.
01/2 - Peter Taylor was at the helm in div2 (L1). We went to Meadow Lane, Nottingham first one evening; 23/10/01 A 2-2 - had then only lost one away. Back at W'dean during the run-in; 23/3/02 H 2-2 - only lost one at home all season. B'ton went up with b2b titles. County wound up 19th with 50pts.
03/4 - back in div2, Mark McGhee was recently made boss. Up across the Trent; 22/11/03 A 1-2 - over the Magpies moon. Later a tense run-in; 1/5/04 H 1-0 - an og, all count for Seagulls. B'ton made play-off final and promotion. County sunk to 23rd with 42pts and relegation.
10/11 - under Gus Poyet, it wasn't until March we met 'em at ours due to postponements but won 1-0. At Meadow Lane on the last day, we drew 1-1. We were champs and County were 19th.
C21 EFL record: P6 . W2 D1 L0 . F4 A2 . W1 D2 L0 . F5 A4 . Pt12 GD+3

EFL L2 record from '99/00 to 18/19; (8, 8, 19, 15, 23 @ L1), 19, 21, 13, 21, 19, 1, (19, 7, 12, 20, 21 @ L1), 17, 16, 5, 23
EFL: best = 7th L1 '12, worst = 23rd L2 '19, promo - '10 L2, p-os - '18 L2, rel - '04, '15 L1, '19 L2
PAST Managers; Gary Brazil (1999-2002), Jocky Scott (2000-1), Billy Dearden (2002-4), Ian Richardson (2004-5), Gudjon Thordarson (2005-6), Steve Thompson (2006-7), Ian McParland (2007-9), Hans Backe (2009), Steve Cotterill (2010), Craig Short (2010), Paul Ince (2010-11), Martin Allen (2011-12), Keith Curle (2012-13), Chris Kiwomya (2013), Shaun Derry (2013-15), Ricardo Moniz (2015), Jamie Fullarton (2016), Mark Cooper (2016), John Sheridan (2016), Kevin Nolan (2017-18), Harry Kewell (2018)

Info - County had gone into Administration in div2 of '02/3 and finished 15th. Life in League2 three seasons later was no fun at all. They survived a second drop on the last day to retain over 140 years in pro footy. In '07/8 they completed another tough term in 21st, 6pts above the Blue Square cut-off line. Apparently their proverbial wheel was still on the barrow. The big money was invested, although Sven Goran Ericcson left for a foreign job. Magpies duly completed '9/10 as L2 champions, with a 10pts lead over runners-up Cherries. For '11/12 they just missed play-offs on GD but only mid table in '12/13. But by 15/16 were in L2 getting used to it again - reaching p-os in 17/18. At end of 18/19 Magpies dropped into non-league football, as historically the oldest EFL club.

SOLIHULL Back to Top
Non-league record from 07/8 to 18/19; (17, 16, 17, 7, 19, 9, 8, 12 1P @ Conf North), 16, 18, 2 @ Nat Lg.
STATUS; got out of northern fixtures to play with rest of the country at higher level.
Manager; Tim Flowers (2018), previously Mark Yeats (2017), Richard Money.
Falmer Years & Withdean Era - no meetings.
Footnote: Moors reached Nat Lg p-os in 18/19.

National League record from 11/12 to 18/19; 16, 21, (14, 11, 9, 8, 5, 1 @ nat lg n). * * * Relegated - '13 NL, promo - '19 NLN *see footnotes below
STATUS; a lev2 outfit at turn of the century but steady decline since into regular non league.
Manager; Jim Gannon
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '03/4, '08/9, '09/10 @ L1
League One - down the canal, or is it up?
Hatters were promoted to div1 in 1997 when Albion just maintained league status but lost the Goldstone. In the Withdean era, both clubs swapped places for '02/3, when we also got there for a season.
03/4 - Steve Coppell left W'dean by early Oct, so interim div2 (L1) fixtures were under caretaker management. League1 results; 25/11/03 H 0-1 - we'd stumbled, stupified. Mark McGhee arrived the week after to sort Albion out. For the re-match, 28/2/04 A 1-1 - took stock of p-o pos. B'ton promo to Champ's via p-os, County = 19th 52pts.
08/9 - Micky Adams was in his second spell and we went to theirs in November and got beat 2-0. Russ Slade was gaffer on the last day, in May when nicking a 1-0 win. We stayed up in 16th, above County anyway 18th - they went into administration.
09/10 - we lost at home in Aug 2-4. Slade got fired and Gus Poyet came in. His squad got a late equaliser in 1-1 away effort in Jan. BHA finished 13th 59pts but troubled County went down as bottom club with merely 25pts.
C21 EFL record: P6 . W1 D0 L2 . F3 A5 . W0 D2 L1 . F2 A4 . Pt5 GD -4

EFL L1 record from '99/00 to 18/19; (17, 19, 24 @ Champ's), 14, 19, 24, (22, 8, 4 @ L2), 18, 24, (24 @ L2), (16, 21 @ Conf), (14, 11, 9, 8, 5, 1 @ nat lg north)
EFL: best = 17th C '00, worst = 14th NLN '14, promo - '08 L2, '19 NLN, rel - '02 C, '05, '10 L1, '11 L2, '14 NL
PAST Managers; Alan Kilner (1999-2001), Carlton Palmer (2001-3), Sammy McIlroy (2003-4), Chris Turner (2004-5), Jim Gannon (2005-9), Gary Ablett (2009-10), Paul Simpson (2010-11), Ray Mathias (2011), Dietmar Hamman (2011), Jim Gannon (2011-13), Alan Lord (2014-15), Neil Young (2015-16), Michael Flynn (2016), Jim Gannon (2016-17)

Info - at end of '04/5 Edgeley Park was shocked when County fell into League2. Like other FL clubs, they share with a Rugby team, so there was always some dosh thru the gates. About time they sorted the open Railway end if hoping to emulate Albion's Falmer ambitions. Stockport were promoted from League2 in '07/8 via play-offs. For '10/11, County dropped into Conference non-league football when bottom of L2. *They fell again to BSN (National League North) in '12/13. At end of 18/19 Hatters won NLN as outright champions.

SUTTON UTD Back to Top
Non League record from 08/9 to 18/19; (5, 2, 1 @ Isthmian Prem), (4, 2, 15, 1 @ Nat Lg South), 12, 3, 10 @ Nat Lg
STATUS; steady progress upwards this decade and set high targets.
Manager; Matt Gray (2019), Paul Doswell, Jimmy Dack, Stuart Massey, John Rains (2004-6).
Falmer Years & Withdean Era - no meetings.
Footnote: United reached p-os in 17/18 but fell short in 16/17 & 18/19.

TORQUAY Back to Top
National League record from 11/12 to 18/19; (5, 19, 24 @ L2), (13, 18, 17, 22 @ nat lg), (1 @ nat lg s). * * * Relegated - '14 L2, '18 NL, promo - '19 NLS
STATUS; an EFL outfit until slipped below the tide mark into non league and can't refloat.
MANAGER; Gary Johnson (2018), previously Gary Owers (2017-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '99/00, '00/01 @ L2
League Two - on the Riviera before change of footy climate.
It was during the first Micky Adams revolution of div3 (L2) days that we last played Torquay United in the league.
99/00 - div3; 21/8/99 H 0-1. 22/1/00 A 0-0. B'ton 11th 67pt, T'quy 9th 69pt.
00/01 - results 2/9/00 H 6-2. 3/2/01 A 0-1. B'ton 1st promoted, T'qy 21st 49pt.
C21 EFL record: P4 . W1 D0 L1 . F6 A3 . W1 D1 L0 . F1 A0 . Pt7 GD+4

EFL L2 record from '99/00 to 18/19; 9, 21, 19, 9, 3, (21 @ L1), 20, 24, (3, 4 @ Conf), 17, 7, 5, 19, 24, (13, 18, 17, 22 @ Conf), (1 @ NLS)
EFL: best = 21st L1 '05, worst = 1st NLS '19, promo - '04 L2, '09 NL, '19 NLS, relegated - '05 L1, '07, '14 L2, '18 NL
PAST Managers; Wes Saunders (1998-2001), Roy McFarland (2001-2), Leroy Rosenior (2002-7), Ian Atkins (2006), John Cornforth (2006), Lubos Kubik (2006-7), Keith Curle (2007), Paul Buckle (2007-11), Martin Ling (2011-12), Alan Knill (2013), Chris Hargreaves (2014-15), Paul Cox (2015), Kevin Nicholson (2015-17), Gary Owers (2017-18)
FA Trophy finalists 2008.

Info - BHA visited Plainmoor in '07/8 season for a FA Cup round2 tie. United were by then a Blue Square Prem outfit, having fallen to non-league the season before. They finished runners-up but Gulls remained decked, missing out on promo in p-os. Next time the Devon unit was successful by winning p-o final of '08/9 against Cambridge. B'ton went back in '9/10 for FAC3 tie against lg2 opposition. United finished in lower order of L2 for '9/10 but it could have been much worse. In '10/11 & '11/12 Gulls made the p-o's. For '13/14 they were relegated to the Conf (National League). Torquay dropped to Vanarama South at end of 17/18. But Gulls were NLS champions in 18/19.

WREXHAM Back to Top
National League record from 11/12 to 18/19; 2, 5, 17, 11, 8, 13, 10, 4 * * * see footnotes.
STATUS; an EFL unit who dropped into non league and stayed there.
MANAGER; Bryan Hughes (2019), previously Graham Barrow (2018), Sam Ricketts (2018), Dean Keates (2016-18)
Falmer years - no meetings. FA Cup - see Falmer Years, previous encounters.

Withdean era - '01/2, '03/4 @ L1
League One - took a punt at the Racecourse on dodgy ground.
Robins (latterly Red Dragons) were constant div2 (L1) while Albion rose from depths of div3 (L2) in Micky Adams first Withdean revolution.
01/2 - div2 14/9/01 A 1-2. Then Peter Taylor took charge, 23/2/04 H 0-0. B'ton were 1st promoted, Wr'xm 23rd 43pt rel.
03/4 - L1 In Mark McGhee's promo attempt; 29/11/03 H 2-0 - wet willy welshers. 8/5/04 A 0-2 - walked Wales wild side. B'ton = 4th p-o promo div1, Wr'xm 13th 60pt.
C21 EFL record: P4 . W1 D1 L0 . F2 A0 . W2 D0 L0 . F4 A1 . Pt10 GD+5

EFL L1 record 99/00 to 18/19; 11, 10, 23, (3 @ L2), 13, 22, (13, 19, 24 @ L2), (10, 11, 4, 2, 5, 17, 11, 8, 13, 10, 4 @ nat lg)
EFL: best = 10th L1 '01, worst = 17th NL '14, promo - '03 L2, p-os - '11, '12, '13, '19 nl, rel - '02, '05, L1, '08 L2
PAST Managers; Brian Flynn (1989-2001), Denis Smith (2001-07), Brian Little (2007-08), Dean Saunders (2008-11), Andy Morrell (2011-14), Kevin Wilkin (2014-15), Gary Mills (2015-16), Dean Keates (2016-18), Sam Rickets (2018), Graham Barrow (2018)
EFL Trophy winners 2005. FA Trophy winners 2013, finalists 2015.

Info - in '04/5 Wrexham went down to League2, while Brighton survived another year in the Championship. The Racecourse Ground was rocked to its turf when the club received the first 10 point deduction for going into Administration. It was always going to be hard to win back viable status. In '07/8 this north Wales club fell into the Conference for non-league football. In '10/11, '11/12 & '12/13 Wrexham were in National League (Conf/Blue Square Prem) play-offs. At end of 18/19 Robins got to p-os again.

WOKING Back to Top
Non-league record from 08/9 to 18/19; 21 @ Conf, (5, 5, 1 @ Conf South), 12, 9 , 7, 12, 18, 21 @ Nat Lg. (2 @ NLS)
STATUS; rose to national level and wish to stay there for as long as possible.
Manager; Alan Dowson (2018), previously Anthony Limbrick (2017-18), Gary Hill (2011-17).
Falmer Years & Withdean Era - no meetings.
FA Trophy finalists 2006.

YEOVIL Back to Top
League TWO record from 11/12 to 18/19; (17, 4 @ L1), (24 @ Champ's), (24 @ L1), 19, 20, 19, 24. * * * Promo - '13 L1, relegated - '14 C, '15 L1, '19 L2
STATUS; a small town club who punched above their weight for awhile during their hayday. Otherwise returned to normality and all things lower league.
MANAGER; tba, previously Darren Way (2015-19)

FALMER years; 13/14 @ Champ's
13/14 - under Oscar Garcia; we drew 0-0 at Huish Park in October. We won 2-0 at the Amex in Apr. BHA 6th 72pt p-os, YT 24th 37pt - relegated.
Champ's record: P2 . W1 D0 L0 . F2 A0 . W0 D1 L0 . F0 A0 . Pt4 GD+2

WITHDEAN era; '06/7, '07/8, '08/9, '09/10, '10/11 @ L1
League One - iron hand in the velvet glove.
There were not a lot of early Yeovil Town fixtures in this Withdean archive because we never got to play 'em until 2006. In '03/4 Brighton were pushing to regain Championship status, while Yeovil first joined League2 after promotion from the Conference. We slipped back for '06/7, while they had further reached League1 by then. Albion visited Glovers' Huish Park on a chilly Tuesday evening in late September, for a first fixture between Sussex and Somerset sides.
06/7 - Hoops beat stripes 2-0 at home and underlined how a gap from non-league to lower leagues could be closed by professionalism. At Withdean on Boxing Day, Yeovil cruised past Brighton 1-3 as Dean Wilkins endured a losing run as fledgling manager. He was trying to put a team of kids together to challenge for play-offs but failing, while Yeovil almost went on to achieve Wembley glory.
07/8 - In L1 it was hoped footy boots would be on other feet but Glovers handed us another brace of beatings. In late September at Tongdean Lane, we lost 1-2. Three months later in the last game, went down there and er, went down by the same score 2-1. Brighton just missed out on play-offs but Yeovil fell to beat the drop by four points.
08/9 - with Micky Adams back, we drew 1-1 at theirs in Sept. Ex-Town boss Russ Slade was gaffer in Mar when we hammered 'em 5-0 at W'dean. They finished 17th getting 51pts, while we reached 16th with 52pts.
9/10 - Slade went back there in Oct to draw 2-2. Town came to ours, last home in May, we won 1-0 under Gus Poyet. Albion = 13th 59pts, Town = 15th 53pts.
10/11 - at W'dean in Oct, we won 2-0. We also won at last on Huish Pk 0-1 in Feb. BHA stayed at no.1 for promo but Glovers got a grip on 14th place.
C21 EFL record: P12 . W4 D0 L2 . F12 A5 . W1 D3 L2 . F5 A7 . Pt18 GD+5

EFL L1 record from '01/2 to 18/19; (3, 1 @ Conf), (8, 1 @ L2), 15, 5, 18, 17, 15, 14, 17, 4 (24 @ Champ's), 24, (19, 20, 19, 24 @ L2)
EFL: best = 24th C '14, worst = 3rd conf '02, promo - '03 conf, '05 L2, '13 L1, p-os - '07 L1, rel - '14 C, '15 L1, '19 L2.
PAST Managers; Steve Thompson (1999-2000), Dave Webb (2000), Gary Johnson (2001-5), Steve Thompson (2005-6), Russell Slade (2006-9), Terry Skiverton (2009-12), Gary Johnson (2012-15), Paul Sturrock (2015), Darren Way (2015-19)
FA Trophy winners 2002.

Background Info - Brighton hadn't met them before 2006 at Tongdean Lane, due to divergent footballing histories but relished a return within twelve months. In a little over a third-tier year, Seagulls also brought on fledgling chicks, who found that defeat (and many others in such games) part of a steep flight curve. Yeovil had been used to winning, having risen from the Conference in 2003 and going on to establish as a 'progressive' outfit. Meanwhile after suffering relegation from the Championship, Brighton chose to change managers and push on developing proteges from a fruitful youth policy. Subsequent weekend events were therefore a measure of how far down those proverbial roads each club travelled to make a positive impact. Slade took over from Johnson at Huish Park but ended up in Brighton. Both clubs were on a downward track at the time. In '12/13 Yeovil won the p-o final and promo to lev2 after 10 years as a FL club. But Town went straight back down twice and into L2 for 15/16. At end of 18/19 Glovers fell into non-league football once more.

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CHESTER Back to Top
NATional League record from 11/12 to 18/19; (1, 1 @ non-lg), (21, 12, 17, 19, 24 @ nat lg), (9 @ nat lg n) * * * see footnotes.
STATUS; once FL members, the tale took a turn for much worse and today they are a shadow of the old club.
MANAGER; Anthony Johnson (2018), previously Marcus Bignot (2017-18)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '99/00 @ L2
League Two - reborn from near Roman ruins?
It was for Micky Adams first full season in div3 (L2) that we last played Chester during the year 2000.
99/00 - inconsistency had set a season's trend; 18/9/99 H 2-3 - yet another shock loss at W'dean. Then a late revival against City for that super run-in; 26/2/00 A 1-7 - started a 14 game unbeaten sequence. B'ton completed their programme in 11th on 67pts. Chester were 24th 39pts and sunk to Conference by a comparable GD of merely -2 - fated or what?
C21 EFL record: P2 . W0 D0 L1 . F2 A3 . W1 D0 L0 . F7 A1 . Pt3 GD+5

National League record from 07/8 to 18/19; 22, 23, (-, 1, 1, 1 @ non-lg), 21, 12, 17, 19, 24 @ nat lg, 9 @ NLN
PAST Managers; Neil Young (2010-14), Steve Burr (2014-16), John McCarthy (2016-17)

Info - talk about borderline, affairs at the Deva Stadium were coming to a head in 1998, as Albion played div3 home games at Gillingham. City were looking for financial backing after being in administration and a supporters trust was launched, that included bucket collections at away games. After a stint in non-league, Chester regained FL status in 2004 and aimed for mid table. In '07/8 they beat the dreaded drop by only one place and five precious points. For '08/9 there were again more probs and relegation from Lg2 was like fall of the Roman empire. During '9/10 Chester was eliminated from Blue Square Prem by the governing body and their record expunged for infractions to rules & regs. They had debts to Revenue people of 26K and that ain't big by standards of FL is it? One law for rich and one for poor.
A renewed Chester won Evo-stik North Prem in '11/12 by an old Roman mile (100pt, 102gl). For '12/13 they easily won Blue Square North (107pt 103gl). In 17/18 they were relegated to Vanarama North ending outside p-os in 18/19.

NATional League record from 11/12 to 18/19; (22, ...1, 2, 2, 1, ...5, 12, 16 @ nat lg n) * * * see footnotes.
STATUS; former EFL outfit who hit the skids in more ways than one and paid a very big price.
MANAGER; tba, Tommy Wright (2017-19), previously Martin Gray (2012-17)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '99/00, '00/01 @ L2
League Two - nice stad, shame about the ambition.
Quakers were a regular div3 (L2) club at Feethams during the period leading to the Withdean era from 1999. Then while they merely aspired to higher things, Micky Adams was on a roll to take BHA onwards & upwards.
99/00 - in div3 28/8/99 A 1-1. 29/1/00 H 1-1. B'ton 11th 67pt, D'ton 4th 79pt p-os.
00/01 - in div3 28/10/00 A 1-2. 16/4/01 H 2-0. B'ton 1st promoted, D'ton 20th 49pt.
C21 EFL record: P4 . W1 D1 L0 . F3 A1 . W1 D1 L0 . F3 A1 . Pt8 GD+4

EFL L2 record from '99/00 to 18/19; 4, 20, 15, 14, 18, 8, 8, 11, 6, 12, 24, (7, 22, [1, 2, 2, 1], 5, 12, 16 @ nat lg)
EFL: best = 4th L2 00, worst = 16th NL '19, rel - '10 L2, '12 NL
PAST Managers; David Hodgson (1996-2000), Gary Bennet (2000-01), Tommy Taylor (2001-02), Mick Tait (2002-03), David Hodgson (2003-06), Neil Maddison (2006), Dave Penney (2006-09), Colin Todd (2009), Steve Staunton (2009-10), Simon Davey (2010), Mark Cooper (2010-11), Craig Liddle (2011-12), Martin Gray (2012-17)
FA Trophy winners 2011.

Info - in 2003 Darlo moved into a new stad outside town. Unfortunately it almost went t*t$ up with Administration. All the time they were still trying to escape League2. They had several shots at p-os and got there as late as '07/8. In '08/9 they lost 10pts for more probs with FL rules & regs that cost 'em a p-o slot. For '9/10 it got even worse when Darlington were bottom of L2 and dropped into non-league. In '11/12 Darlington were relegated from the Conference (Blue Square Prem). Then soon disappeared into northern lower non-leagues... but Quakers started a climb back via Northern Premier divisions to reach National League North for 16/17. At end of 18/19 they were a lower order outfit.

Non League record from 08/9 to 18/19; (2 @ Conf N), x, x, 8, 17, 3, 11, 9, 8, 17, 9 @ Nat Lg * * * see footnotes.
STATUS; a historical northeast FL outfit from days of yore. Comfortable at 5th tier now while travelling rest of the country.
Manager; Ben Clarke (2019), previously Steve Watson (2017-19), Neil Aspin (2015-17), Malcolm Crosby (2015), Gary Mills (2013-15), Anth Smith (2012-13), Ian Bogie (2007-13).
Falmer Years & Withdean Era - no meetings.
Footnotes: the Geordie outfit got inside p-os in 13/14 but left outside for 15/16, 16/17 & 18/19. They were then suspended from the Nat Lg for admin irregularities, dropping into NLN.

GUISELEY Back to Top
Non League record from 09/10 to 18/19; (1 @ Northern Prem), (5yrs @ Conf North), 20, 20, 24 @ Nat Lg, (19 @ NLN)
STATUS; reached level 5 but not able to get a regular berth there as yet.
Manager; Marcus Bignot (2018), previously Paul Cox (2018), Sean St Ledger (2017-18), Adam Lockwood (2016-17), Mark Bower (2015-16).
Falmer Years & Withdean Era - no meetings.

HEREFORD Back to Top
National League record from11/12 to 18/19; 23, (6, 20 @ Conf), x, 1, x, x, ...(17 @ nat lg n) * * * see footnotes.
Manager; Marc Richards (2018)
STATUS: once very big in BHA history prior to this century, from when the gulf between these clubs widened hugely.
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '08/9 @ L1
League One - plenty of Bull but not much shine.
Hereford United were promoted from League2 in '07/8. No previous league meetings during the Withdean era until '08/9 in Lg1. They'd waited over a decade to meet us again! How did they like our temporary home?
08/9 - in Oct Bulls drew 0-0 at W'dean. Micky Adams couldn't believe it either. But he was well gone for a resheduled fixture in April. Slade took over and got a win at Edgar St, 1-2 in a relegation battle. We stayed up, they didn't. History repeated - deja vu!
C21 EFL record: P2 . W0 D1 L0 . F0 A0 . W1 D0 L0 . F2 A1 . Pt3 GD1

EFL L2 record from '01/2 to 18/19; (17, 6, 2, 2, 2, @ Conf), 16, 3, (24 @ L1), 16, 21, 23, (6, 20 @ Conf), (x, 1, x, x @ Mid & South Lg), (17 NLN)
EFL: best = 24 L1 '09, worst = 17th NLN '19, promo - '06 conf, '08 L2, rel - '09 L1, '12 L2, '14 NL
PAST Managers; Graham Turner (1995-2010), John Trewick (2009-10), Simon Davey (2010), Jamie Pitman (2010-12), Martin Foyle (2012-14), Peter Beadle (2014-18),

Background - not quite exactly ten years after Doncaster came to Brighton and played in that frantic very last game at the Goldstone Ground, they returned to what was now a city in springtime. The venue of April '07 was Withdean, which hosted a pretty ordinary mid-table run-in fixture in League 1. There was little to play for except pride in performance and thoughts that things can get better one day. Before too long many Brighton fans were renewing season tickets for following season and also wondering where the last decade went. A win against Donny in the penultimate match of '96/7 had set up a final day relegation clash at HEREFORD and you know the rest. If not read, Dick Knight in Characters from our Archive.
The following season Albion were again in deep trouble, playing home games miles away at Gillingham. It was only a truly dreadful run of results by relegated Doncaster that saved our record of seriously avoiding Conference football for two years running. For any number of previous seasons Brighton had been a div2 club with aspirations, if not expectations of higher achievement. That particular image was wrecked in the nineties and misplaced in the noughties.
So did Rovers really do us a big favour way back then as they slipped out of the league? They since began fixtures for 2007 at their brand spanking new Keepmoat Stadium and had nearly 8000 there when Bristol city visited on their way to the Championship. Read into that mundane statement what you'd like to.
* * *
What fictionally might have been.
In a twist of warp speed fate, Albion supporters read back pages of daily newspapers one hot day and recoiled in a horrific sweat. The summer of 1997 had turned into a nuclear winter wasteland, like remnants of ravaged, excavated Goldstone soil. BHA could surprisingly have been voted out of the Football League at an emergency meeting for, 'failing to ensure the club would return to its populated catchment area.' Mr Knight and his consortium had all but officially taken over the Board, so woulda proved powerless at an eleventh hour to stop rot at the top. Albion had been caught between the Devils and deep blue and white sea. Or put another way, appeared washed up by workings of satanic maladministration.
And HEREFORD would happily have been reinstated to div3. But Brighton did start the '97/8 season - ground-sharing at Priestfield. Withdean would eventually be updated to take six thousand people watching pro outfits. Now nice Mr Knight already had a vision of a brighter future and motivated his team to work at providing plans for an even newer home.
Meanwhile Hereford were starting on their own climb out of the gutter in an attempt to reach stars. Withdean would be a new destination because basically, we were still there over a decade on from div3 survival at their expense. Would they follow us all the way to Falmer? Er, not likely!
* * *
Footnotes: in '9/10 Hereford achieved the same number of points as Brighton but in L2. Both were probably at their right level anyway. For '10/11, Bulls escaped relegation in 21st spot with a three point deduction to boot. But they didn't beat the drop back to non-league in '11/12.
They disappeared from the National League scene in 2014. The club re-started, winning Midland League in 15/16 and competing in Southern League from 16/17. At end of 18/19 Bulls were a lower order outfit in nat lg n.

National League record from 11/12 to 18/19; 6, 2, 7, 16, 23 @ Conf), (2, 4, 10 @ nat lg north) *see footnotes below
Manager; Steve MacFarlane
STATUS; a non league side that once got to play in the EFL from Y2K but returned to their old roots.
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '00/01 @ L2
League Two - it all wore a bit thin.
Harriers were a Conference club that once got lucky in Y2k. Meanwhile Micky Adams had re-built Seagulls and was looking to set div3 alight.
00/1 - he got off to a poor start at W'dean; 28/8/00 H 0-2. By the halfway mark he was better placed to go for broke at Hoo Road; 13/1/01 A 0-2. B'ton ended the season as champions, while K'min were 16th on 53pts.
C21 EFL record: P2 . W0 D0 L1 . F0 A2 . W1 D0 L0 . F2 A0 . Pt3 GD0

EFL L2 record '97-'01; (2, 17, 15, 1 @ Conf), 16. From '05/6 to 18/19; (15, 10, 13, 6, 13, 6, 6, 2, 7, 16, 23 @ Conf), (2, 4, 10 @ nat lg north)
PAST Managers; Graham Aliner (1983-98), Phil Mullen (1998-9), Jan Molby (1999-02), Ian Britten (2002-3), Jan Molby (2003-4), Stuart Watkiss (2004-6), Mark Yates (2006-9), Steve Burr (2010-14), Gary Whild (2014-15), Dave Hockaday (2015-16), John Eustace (2016-17)
FA Tophy finalists 2007.

Info - life at Aggborough Stadium got tougher for the Worcestershire outfit when failing to make an impression following a mid table Lg2 finish in '01/2. After another couple of seasons they slipped back into the Conference, the rug effectively pulled from beneath failing footy feet. They'd even made substantial ground improvements to boot. Did somebody get a carpeting after a ruck, as they rolled over and fell flat?
* In '10/11, '11/12 & '12/13, Harriers were playing in Blue Square Prem (6, 6, 2) chasing p-os. But fell into National League North for 16/17. At end of 18/19 They were midtable in NLN.

Non League record from 08/9 to 18/19; (1 @ Mid Div1), (5, x, 1 @ Southern Lg Prem), (13, r, @ Conf North), (5, x, 2 @ S Lg Prem), 19, 13 @ Nat Lg N
STATUS; rose from tiers 8&7 and aiming to stay at lev6 now if possible.
Manager; Paul Holleran
Falmer Years & Withdean Era - no meetings.

NUNEATON Back to Top
Non League record from 08/9 to 18/19; (2 @ Midlands Div1), (2 @ Southern Prem), (6, 5 @ Conf North), 15, 13, 24 @ Conf, (6, 12, 22 @ Nat Lg N)
STATUS; made the jump quickly from regional lower order to national fixtures but yet to bounce back.
Manager; Jimmy Ginnelly (2019), Nicky Eaden (2018), Gary Charles (2018), Dino Maamria (2017-18), Tommy Wright (2016-17), Kevin Wilson (2015-16), Liam Daish (2014-15), Brian Reid (2014), Kevin Wilkin (2006-14).
Falmer Years & Withdean Era - no meetings.

Non-league record from 99/00 to 18/19; 9, 4, 15, 21 @ Conf, (6, 1P @ Conf North), 18, 23 @ Conf, (4, 5, 1P @ Conf North), 21, 7, 20, 18, 19, 16, 23 @ Conf, (15, 14 @ Nat North).
STATUS; one-time old FL side from last century who drift between 5th & 6th tiers these days.
Manager; Liam Watson
Falmer Years & Withdean Era - no meetings.

Non League record from 07/8 to 18/19; (12, 4, 1, 1, 2, 1 @ Northern div1), (5, 2 @ N Prem div1, 2 @ Northern Prem), 8, 4 @ Nat Lg N
STATUS; applied for promo to higher levels and the elevation took them into level 6.
Manager; Jason Ainsley (2007), Jamie Pollock (2006-7), Justin Perry (2006), Ken Houlahan (2005-6)
Falmer Years & Withdean Era - no meetings.

YORK Back to Top
National League record from 11/12 to 18/19; (4 @ Conf), (17, 7, 18, 24 @ L2), (21 @ nat lg), (11, 12 @ nat lg n). * * * Promo - '12 conf, relegated - '16 L2, '17 NL
STATUS; one time historic EFL club who hit the proverbial wall and it all came crashing down.
MANAGER; Steve Watson (2019)
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '99/00, '00/01 @ L2
League Two - plenty of history but a battle to raise the City standard.
It was during the first Micky Adams revolution that we last met York in div3 (L2). In our homecoming year, when inconsistencies held Albion back.
99/00 - div3 16/10/99 H 0-1 - Adams under fire! He turned it around for the run-in; 22/4/00 A 0-0 - curve cannon-ball at Bootham Crescent. B'ton stopped short of p-os in 11th on 67pts. York only got 20th with 52pts.
00/01 - BHA went there first; 23/9/00 A 0-1 - victory on foreign field. At W'dean for bloody re-match; 24/2/01 H 1-1 - honours even in nationwide war. B'ton won the title and promotion to div2 (L1). York struggled again getting to 17th on 52pts.
C21 EFL record: P4 . W0 D1 L1 . F1 A2 . W1 D1 L0 . F1 A0 . Pt5 GD0

EFL L2 record from 99/00 to 18/19; 20, 17, 12, 10, 24, (17, 8, 4, 14, 17, 5, 8, 4 @ Conf), 17, 7, 18, 24, (21 @ Conf), (11, 12 @ nat lg n)
EFL: best = 7th L2 '14, worst = 12th NLN '19, promo - '12 conf, rel - '04, '16 L2, '17 NL
PAST Managers; Alan Little (1993-9), Neil Thompson (1999-2000), Terry Dolan (2000-3), Chris Brass (2003-4), Billy McEwan (2005-7), Colin Walker (2007-8), Martin Foyle (2008-10), Gary Mills (2010-13), Nigel Worthington (2013-14), Russ Wilcox (2014-15), Jackie McNamara (2015-16), Gary Mills (2016-17), Martin Gray (2017-18), Sam Collins (2018-19)
FA Trophy winners 2012 & 2017, finalists 2009.

Info - Minstermen had been in div2 (L1), while BHA said goodbye to the Goldstone, bon voyage to ground sharing at Gillingham and hello to the Withdean era. Albion went from gutter almost to stars in mid noughties but City sadly dropped out of league football in the interim. As Adams rejoined Brighton in 2008, York were in Blue Square Prem going next to Crawley, Eastbourne and Lewes. In the event it was not a good year for either club, north or south. In '9/10 & '11/12 York got to Conf p-o stages. They returned to the FL for '12/13. And so the footy merry-go-round completed another revolution - oh my good God!! In '13/14 York reached L2 p-os. But were back in non-league for 16/17 and relegated to National League North. At end of 18/19 Minstermen were midtable in NLN.

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BATH Back to Top
Non League from 17/18; 9, 5 @ NLS
Nat Lg STATUS; a fifth/sixth tier outfit after rising from Southern League earlier this century (06/7). Various ups & downs but not much more.
Manager; Jerry Gill

Non League record from 05/6 to 18/19; (1 @ Isthmian Prem), (4yrs @ Conf South), (1 @ Conf South), 12, 9, 6, 13, 3, 22 @ Nat Lg, (6P @ Nat Lg S) 22 @ Nat Lg
STATUS; came thru ranks of lev7 to gain National Southern-region fixtures and maybe establish at 5th tier.
Manager; tba, previously Danny Searle (2019), Hakan Hayrettin (2018-19), Andy Porter (2018), Brad Quinton (2017-18), Hakan Hayrettin (2016-17), Danny Cowley (2015/16), Alan Devonshire (2011-15)
Falmer Years & Withdean Era - no meetings.

Non League record from 16/17; 4, 3, 4 @ NLS
Nat Lg STATUS; rose from Isthmian League into Conference South (07/8). Regulars in tier6 play-offs in recent seasons.
Manager; Rod Stringer

Non League record from 12/13 to 18/19; 12, 10, 11, 17, 18, 18, 15 @ NLS
Nat Lg STATUS; elevated from Sussex County League (99/00) and morphed into a pukka Conference South (04/5) & Conf (07/8) club via Southern League (02/3). Tier6 has been their level in recent seasons (10/11).
Manager; Lee Bradbury (2019), Jamie Howell (2017-19), Tommy Widdrington (2012-17), Garry Wilson (1999-2012).

HAVANT Back to Top
Non League record from 03/4 to 18/19; (14yrs @ Conf South), (1 @ Isthmian Prem), (1 @ Nat Lg S), 23 @ Nat Lg
STATUS; plenty of lower level history in level 6, which appears their mark so far.
Manager; Lee Bradbury (2019), previously Paul Doswell (2018-19), Stuart Ritchie (2012), Shaun Gale (2007-12).
Falmer Years & Withdean Era - no meetings.

Non-league record from 99/00 to 18/19; (tiers 10&9 6yrs), (tiers 8&7 9yrs), (National South 1yr), National League 2yrs, 24 @ Nat Lg
STATUS; came from the backwoods into national football but this level is a different ball-game.
Manager; John Still (2019), previously Hakan Hayrettin (2019), Harry Wheeler (2018), Jay Saunders (2011), Andy Ford (2010-11), Peter Nott (2010), Alan Walker & Lloyd Hume (2006-10).
Falmer Years & Withdean Era - no meetings.
Footnote: after an upward curve this decade, United survived 3 seasons at the 5th tier before relegation in 18/19.

WELLING Back to Top
Non League record from 11/12 to 18/19; 3, 1 @ Conf S, 16, 20, 24 @ Conf Prem, 16, 10, 3 @ NLS
Nat Lg STATUS: a C20 Conference club who came back from Southern League to be part of Conf South (03/4). Have had a few ups & downs this century both on and off the field.
Manager; Steve King

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National League record from 11/12; (5, 2, 3, 1, 5, 5 @ non lg) *see footnotes below.
STATUS; basically a non league outfit who flirted with the EFL but it all fell apart disastrously.
Manager; tba
Falmer years - no meetings.

WITHDEAN era - '03/4 @ L1
League One - went back from where they came.
Rushden were a useful Conference club, while BHA struggled in div3, going on to win a place in the FL for 2001. BHA also gained promotions but was back in div2 for '03/4 after an abortive attempt at div1.
03/4 - Steve Coppell was in charge initially for a first visit to Nene Park; 30/9/03 A 1-3 - rushin, rockin & rollin. Mark McGhee was chasing p-os during the run-in; 12/4/04 H 0-0 - we ruddy well wuz robbed! B'ton got 4th and went to Cardiff, R&D were 22nd with 48pts and dropped a division.
C21 EFL record: P2 . W0 D1 L0 . F0 A0 . W1 D0 L0 . F3 A1 . Pt4 GD+2

EFL2 record from 99/00 to 16/17; (2, 1 @ Conf), 6, 1, (22 @ L1), 22, 24, (12, 16, 11, 4, 13 @ Conf), (5, 2, 3, 1, 5, 5 @ non lg)
PAST Managers; Brian Talbot (1997-2004), Ernie Tippett (2004-5), Barry Hunter (2005-6), Paul Hart (2006), Graham Westley (2006-7), Gary Hill (2007-9), Justin Edinburgh (2009-11)

Info - Diamonds had gained promotion to the FL and in their initial term of '01/2, just missed out in a div3 p-o final. They then set Nene Park alight by taking the title in '02/3. After one season R&D were back in League2 and worse was to come. By '07/8 Diamonds hardly sparkled in Blue Square Premier (Conference) with mid table mediocrity. Then the tale took a turn for disaster and they wound up after 10/11. *A new club reformed in 2011 for the United Counties League and from 17/18 play in the lower Southern League div.

 Back to Top

Falmer Stadium We don't want to go into pages and pages on here, so a little light reading and comment is posted. It's our new home we're talking about and we oughta know the score.


March was exceptionally dry and main contractors, sub contractors and specialists, swarmed over the site from highest ceiling to lowest floor, fitting the Amex out. At beginning of April grass seed was sown on the pitch, which by any standards was already better than many deep pile lounge carpets fitted in Brighton fans homes. So, not a stone was left unturned in order to reach a right milestone of a completed icon. At beginning of May with the Withdean era now part of BHA history, people were arriving with polishing cloths rather than bloody great boxes of tools. A new page for the club was about to turn. The bulk of the work was finished by end of this month, when BHA staff could then start to move in to their new place of work.


It started to snow early doors, following many days of sub-zero nights but irrespective of such hostile conditions, work continued at pace. They sure were tough, those pukka sub-contractors appointed by Buckingham's search, employ and execute team...
Meanwhile the A270 bridge and revamped egress to Sussex Uni was officially opened.
In New Year, rain replaced frost and ice but work continued on track. Deep within parts of the complex as yet not accessible to fans or BHA suppliers, fitting out gathered speed to accomplish a tight schedule. Yes it appeared like chaos reigned supreme but hey, it was organised. Long nights and dark days couldn't prevent a steady ray of light spreading across our icon, illuminating a fantastic future.


Fitting out work carried on at pace, with completion to finish standards in certain areas for both admin and customer needs. The pitch expanse still looked like a building site with puddles, although it was already pretty level as a pre-requisite. Attention was being paid to several places within the stands complex, including concourses, boxes, hospitality suites, offices, club shop and changing room. These were in various stages of preparation, though kept clean and tidy - as per 'elf & safety rules and regs.


Drive over Ditchling Beacon or down the Drove from Woodingdean and what vista did you see, when looking toward Sussex University? Go into Stanmer Park, park and walk back from the village. Oh yes, a lovely image forms just like those publicity shots from Public Inquiries all them years ago... The roof was going on coz those two arches were in place and kinda connecting ends, while supporting sides. Yet more settled weather helped in the construction process above a sunny site. By time rains came, the building was in fine shape and almost looked finished. Inside it was a hive of industry with workers dry but flat out to keep on schedule.


Yeah, we wuz becoming a right doughnut about it coz from overhead, high flying seagulls could see the stad footprint was forming a proper round shape. Floors were poured and pre-cast units positioned in supporting steel work, to make up stand terracing in west and north structures. Continuing dry weather allowed further concreting, ducting and cabling to also be installed on east and south sides. So, less of a construction site and more a sweet building taking shape. It looked good and prompted many expectations to taste good too.


You could see it was gonna be a pukka arena coz it was all shaping up nicely. A bloody great big steel arch got pieced together at ground level and kinda lifted into position. And what an erection! The place got bigger by the day and you couldn't miss it when viewed from s-n-e or w, or even in bright-on-white snow. It was deep too. Work pressed on for all types of weather and we'd got a pukka concourse and link to the station and all. Highways work on the A27 by-pass - Stanmer link road junction began.


Martin Perry announced that Seagulls Stad Co Ltd had been handed possession of land that previously was Uni of B'ton premises. Contractors soon flattened 'old' buildings in prep to begin foundations for the west stand. Massive piles were driven for housing base sections of the iconic steel arch. Then the rains came and it all got a tad sticky down village way, on and off site.


Good and primarily dry weather allowed groundworks to proceed at an alarming pace. The pitch was levelled so to speak and foundations on the east side 'terraces' were sunk - not the end of the beginning but a start anyway. Then these steels started to take shape of a pukka stand. OMG, it was like watching a stadium being built on time lapse fast forward. Up went the east stand structure and like topsy, just growed. Then it looked quite big when viewed from the road and you could see what it was like to buy off plan.


Tony Bloom took over for a new generation in the regeneration of life in BHA - but not as we know it!! Apparently he was mega-rich and secured financing this project with about 80M of not so hard earned. In a credit crisis world, he offered an interest-free personal loan in return for becoming chairman. Control freak or what? But at least he is a Brighton fan to boot.
Following a dry period of weather, site groundwork was well on schedule. Also the frequently expounded movement of top soil to pastures near, rather than far solved some other logistical problems. Anybody who had been caught in temporary traffic lites on the Drove would know all about hold-ups. Meanwhile that footprint hole got a lot bigger, wider and deeper and from the A27, appeared almost as a M-way extension, complete with massive tractors and such.


First week of Feb and it snowed but top soil was shifted and left Village Way on an embankment. B&HCC approved 'housekeeping' planning revisions, marking an official milestone on the long road to Falmer. It remained the icon project for the city in a time of financial crisis, drastic cutbacks and scrapped blueprints on land by sea. Community needs and ideas were finally becoming reality on unitary borders.
In brilliant sunlight, Brighton fans attended an official groundbreaking and opening of site ceremony on 17th December. Fun and laughter after years of blood, sweat, toil and tears for a muddy field that is forever Albion.


The world had turned since days when original planning applications and business plans packaged Falmer below 50 million pounds. Cost had soared by over 10m, taking the budget beyond 60m. Increased steel price and current applicable rules & regs meant Seagulls Stad plc was forced to re-jig paperwork and re-apply to B&HCC for updated permissions. Then a bombshell hit BHA - contractors Buckingham Group couldn't complete before 2011. However wheels were set in motion and although slightly redesigned, the project remained viable.


Bit of a marking-time period for fans on holiday but Martin & team-Falmer were working, seemingly burning the midnight oil. Checking, re-checking and finalising plans, drafting and detailing submissions, applications and tenders, plus dealing with contractors, councils, committees and meeting with local residents co-op group was only part of the on-going project! Easy life some would say!!


A core of Withdean faithful got along to Hove Town Hall at end of Feb for a giant Falmer update presentation, hosted by up-front pair Dick Knight and Martin Perry. Those not currently partaking of fortnightly open-air sport experiences represented only a tiny minority of community stadium devotees attending this dream-on function. Reality might be years away but it was clear to BHA board, including fellow Directors Ray Bloom and Derek Chapman who put in a belated introduction at balcony height, that they have an equally massive PR job on to attract lost generations of blue & white affiliated. We realise the world has turned since that Lego Stand of Goldstone Ground glory days thirty odd years ago but Brighton & Hove flag-wavers need to smarten up their 21st century act in order to grab attention of missing tens of thousands across the south east. It was a tad too in-house, conveniently cosy and contrived, to actually inspire supporters to immediately spread the word regionally. Preaching to converted may fill a basic unitary venue but next time, a pukka promotion pitch rather than ground level team-talk is necessary for theoretically encouraging strangers' bums on seats to gain complete 'house full' satisfaction. See background info at PI1 below.
Apparently there are up to six additional planning applications required to be passed by B&H City Council as part of overall Falmer infrastructure. These permissions include construction of a flyover on the Brighton exit of A27 dual carriageway and an access road built into Sussex University. A huge new footbridge is proposed over the main Lewes rail lines and even creating thoroughfares linking our stadium's footprint 'crater' to an emergency parallel road. We assumed from Perry's optimism that such lodged paperwork be given the official nod automatically and relief for frustrated temporarily housed Brighton fans, with yet more scheduled letters to write, pretty damn quick. B&HCC was to act as authority and sub-contractors for ensuring highways work is more than just permanently in progress and not left continually coned-off to its citizens and visitors. As fans arrive from north, south, east and west via private, public or park & ride transportation, they will be greeted by a Sussex style Wembley arch that looms over the landscape on a compact but truly impressive site. Those Brighton fans who went to Hull in August 2005 know how wonderful this vision can be. Any associated multicoloured rainbow is only available across a backdrop of beautiful South Downs on limited inclement occasions. Incidentally who could forget Peter Taylor rubbing our noses in it when gesticulating at KC stadium superstructure, while realising we'd vehemently been lobbying his east Yorkshire constituency MP and preparing to march on return along a Sussex sea-front for non political but all the same correct community purposes. See PI2 info below.
B&HCC have of course granted Brighton land on which to erect a universal icon, which in appreciation by Mr Knight will be colloquially named 'Dick's Stadium' or as 'victorious' PI1 Falmer residents referred to it, 'The Dicks Out Bowl'. Now that these duck pond devoted have woken to a brand new dawn, they are happy to agree with spreading thousands of tons of excavated chalk on set-aside to south of Village Way. This is infinitely preferable to piling it into a mammoth rampart along the Drove to keep out rampaging travelling support. Conversely new National Park back-packers were flocking to ex-Lewes DC property of tarmac coach and bus drop-off areas adjacent to a widened access road. Contrary to recent reports, an extension of the Channel Tunnel expressway will not impinge on sleepy Sussex, with total exclusion of a super duper hotel complex put up on the AONB. DK although grateful to local authority generosity, will tap into big business for naming rights. Southern Water are almost next door and with extremely high income from their local catchment services, we could feasibly be their very next sponsored community utility.
With the Royal Pavilion seemingly demoted to second most important, beautiful and money making venue within unitary boundaries, true significance of this work and leisure place-to-be should not er, be underestimated. If there are virtually no jobs in close-by east Brighton areas of outer city blight, there will be hundreds to come by two years time. Not only is BHA moving lock, stock and proverbial twin town barrels to Falmer but they intend to employ half the present signing-on list of BN2 job seekers, since Hazel Blears became our very own 'little ray of sunshine'. Both Universities are to get a vested interest in ramped up 'Sport Brighton' by including BHA into scientific study in return for training facilities, medical and injury welfare and teach us how properly to play football to boot. Should Falmer High School become incorporated as a City Academy then further ranges of educational, vocational and social schemes and programmes for upcoming generations of fans can result. There is more but you'd only nod off, failing appended visual images, 3DCGI or pop-up adverts for er, pop concerts.


Martin Perry works full time on Falmer, while Ken Brown does the biz for er, all other biz. Tenders go out and a shortlist of three emerges, for portfolio on how to build it for 50 million. Big club or what?


Paperwork is sorted with all involved parties - as if there hasn't been enough already!
Dick & Martin present Falmer for all team members with BHA certificates in appreciation of all their fantastic efforts.
Deadline passes for appeals to ground-breaking SoS decision. Well it will be when that giant JCB turns up on site!!
Falmer Parish Council and other assorted Southdowns associated hangers-on concede defeat. They wasted a lot of peoples time and money trying to break B&HCC and BHAFC spirit, resolve and will to fight on against a process of manipulating old values of previous green backlash. Hey, we do siege mentality better than most and look, we're gonna neutralise our carbon footprint with the best of 'em.

YES! 24 July 2007

For Brighton fans, there was an over-riding feeling that the goal of elevating the only Football League Club in vast catchment areas of Sussex and beyond was at least achievable. As far back as many can remember a new ground was spoken about, with belief one day it would actually happen. The twin towns of Brighton & Hove then became a city and a philosophy of expecting those things that are included in such status, finally gave support to the Albion. Historically it was the University that provided a training ground and helped with facilities in a frustrating era starting over three decades ago. Mike Bamber, our charismatic Chairman of the seventies and eighties said, 'you name it, it has happened at Brighton'. He could not look into a bleak future but wanted to put BHA on an equal footing with others in a top flight. That same desire is prevalent today, if not more so as civic authorities are now behind these noble aspirations. We stood together (at a few away games anyway) awaiting a 'final' decision, knowing in principle a new stadium was acceptable on a site within B&H boundaries, which is where we want it to be Albion's home. Entrenched stalemate that strangled broader Falmer discussion cannot again be polarised, as HM Government eventually reached its definitive conclusion. There somehow has to be a meeting of minds, that will show all previous participants can accept a 'collective' decision without dissent. This through realisation will actually be of benefit, then to progress a quality of life for all those in the immediate area, where emphasis is in balancing and maintaining a new order for a 21st century Sussex.


Some people are on the Falmer site, they think it's all over... it just might be now!!
Hazel Blears delivers some news - it's YES to Falmer.
Gordon Brown becomes PM - more delay.
A report is leaked to show National Park limit as outside Falmer site! CPRE slam government for failure to secure borders in 'good time'. Bloody cheek!! They really have got a nerve and are self-protected kings of rural hypocrisy. Talk about sound bite pollution!
Seagulls party candidates scored a shock against LDC with good numbers of votes gained in 4 wards at local elections. Lib-Dems are running scared and know their time is up delaying a Brighton chalk slope recount.


Fans walk from centre to Sheepcote and take, well like forever. It was to disprove anti's theory of sustainable super-supporters able to reach 10 mph no sweat!!
CPRE hate footy fans and us specially at top of their hit list. What's new?
LDC concede defeat on 1st of this month but we say, 'see you in court' because we'd like to make fools of 'em.
Falmer Parish Council got enough 'elite' into one room to make a proper quorum, then say Moulsecoombe residents could not make the grade working at our new stadium. Surely that's un-neighbourly and probably illegal antisocial nimbyism to boot.
University students voted to oppose stadium plans - as if we gave a flying Seagull's shite for 'em!!
Lewes DC rubbished Albion winning a community club of the year award in their communications to er, SoS communities and local affairs department - well!! Dick Knight hit back in a Soccer Night interview, chewed nails and spit rust. He was fighting mad!
A Government spokes-person reported a decision on Falmer would be forthcoming from the Communities Ministry by 9 July 2007 as a deadline. Ten Years since 'moving' to Gillingham!


Oct '06 - LDC call off possible High Court battle just prior to case date and intend to go with Sec of State deliberation.
Aug '06 - Seagulls Party wins appreciable share of the vote in by-election ward for LDC.
Nov '05 - Lewes District Council challenge Prescott's written statements as to details of classifying area around site.
Oct '05 - Prescott says go ahead.
Sept '05 - second march in support of stadium.
Feb '05 - PI2 proceeds to consider alternative sites.
Sept '04 - B'fans march to Labour Conf at Brighton Centre.
Jul '04 - PI1 verdict in favour of anti's alliance but Prescott offers lifeline to pro-stad group.
Feb '03 - PI1 opens but shortly adjournes until October.
Aug '02 - application called in for PI to resolve issues.
Jun '02 - B&HCC vote 11 to 1 for Falmer.
July '01 - lobbying of Council prior to submission of planning applications.
Aug '00 - Falmer in new unitary city local plan.
Aug '99 - BHA homecoming to Withdean for FL Div3.
May '99 - big city public vote goes in favour of Falmer.
June '98 - Withdean sports complex approved for BHA use by B&H Council.
Mar '98 - Martin Perry for BHA, does Sussex locality surveys and comes up with Falmer.
Aug '97 - Dick Knight's consortium in charge at BHA.

Fatman Slims

Falmer Stadium

BUILD - Blueprint program

Season ticket sales had gone so well, they decided to fit over twenty thousand seats in blue and white to put bums on when the place was up and running. Additional hospitality areas in the east stand were included in spec amendments and revisions, due to unprecedented demand for corporate style entertaining with state of the art facilities. Martin Perry ticked all the boxes on 31st May and the Amex was officially handed to the club by Buckinghams group. Local firms were encouraged to bid for catering contracts, event management and the like. This in turn would lead to employment, both at the Amex and in Sussex, for several hundred workers at end of the day. The new community stadium was now waiting on Brighton fans to test facilities during summer ramp-up events.
Well, for a kick-off, BHA announced new season ticket deals for the Amex. After an extended fourteen years wait, that will now do nicely. There were plush seats available in 3 of 4 home areas, with an upper tier choice in that iconic West Stand. Long suffering Withdeanites got first pick after attending 40 person presentations at Village Way. Around 15k seats could be pre-booked, to include a family stand, behind-the-goal Goldstone type north stand as per Amex style and superb views for blocks along both W & E touch lines. All positions offered affordable prices and DD accepted to boot. Oh, you could even buy your seat for life with a PSL option. It was like that choccy heaven advert - they were really spoiling us.
Albion announced participation with Amex in community projects, using the giant financial company's staff to assist with AITC courses.
And to think Mr Perry would be putting his feet up once decade-long plans finally began to reach the action stage. Well, he's working harder now than previously on the Galpharm project as a young paper pusher. But being a footy fan and having construction experience is kinda handy for this mega Falmer development. The building was now a shell and ongoing fitting-out work, required that attention to detail only a multi-skilled project manager in touch with grass-roots desires could deliver. Hey, even the manager's office had on suite facilites. As for hospitality, well, a quick revision of technical drawings was needed to accomodate excess demand for banqueting, private functions and conferences. You name it and Martin & Co had all angles covered, from concourse to control room, or ticket office to turnstiles. And don't forget the club shop, changing rooms and executive boxes - all top quality. BTW an ex-Amex head of dept became our latest BHA board member, with inside sponsorship knowledge to help footy/finance partners.
It might be pre-season but Martin wasn't exactly on extended holiday. There was still much work to do... Then news broke that naming rights had been granted to American Express, thus becoming their local Community Stadium. And perhaps BHA is conveniently affiliated to a global brand - that'll do nicely! Apparently, Amex reached out from its B&H City, Edward Street Euro HQ and agreed to more than a meeting of financial minds. But to yer died-in-UK-political-will Brighton fans, it will always be Falmer. From a prolonged Sussex borderland battle, justice was seen to be done; so by any other name, another new stadium in England should smell as sweet. See 28/10/05 below.
And talking of names, BHA announced that fans could purchase individual engraved bricks to be assembled into walls along a pathway. Now that's a proper walk of fame or what?
With the stadium becoming more of a tangible reality, rather than mere cgi glossy brochures, the sales team offered punters a chance to secure their place for 2011. The select 1901 club was introduced for providing premium seating and hospitality. Albion shirt sponsors It First, were no1 in line to purchase an executive box and those other 13 sold out too, in less time than it took to put up the stad roof. Even with the place as a shell, it was apparent that by strict design and build standards, quality and finish were paramount to this mega project. See below, 'the full story'.
Final details of implementing National Park status in East Sussex are confirmed. With or without an official classification, the Downs above Falmer are still an area of outstanding natural beauty. See below, 'the beginning'.
MP had so much paperwork to deal with, he hardly had time for Xmas, New Year or project managing Tony Bloom's wish list for the brand new decade. Good job Buckingham Group were up to speed. Meanwhile, Mr J Catt Esq was winding 'champain' Perry up re Withdean's wind-down. He only wanted to go to the EU court of human rights to appeal. He'd cost BHCC tax payers a pretty penny too, what with PI1 & PI2 etc and all. We almost coulda funded buying Withdean for footy training grounds. Plus renting it out to other sports like athletics. We had squatters rights there after all is said and done. It could never be regarded as strictly residential - well, not since Y2k became 2010. You know, that infamous W'dean era.
Contractors had really kicked on during a dry late summer in warm conditions. Paperwork was next exchanged, on passing the remaining part of the full site into Stad company possession. Mr Perry project managed and he was ticking all the right boxes to date. His intention was for a vision to become reality and turn blueprints into blue and white accomodation.
Buckingham were turning the place into a palace and following Perry's instructions to the letter. Amendments to overall stadium site projects had to be made in light of the recession etc - but not to compromise the mission statement. Basically it was gonna be built, on budget, on time and no corners cut. Was it significant that the coach park was tarmac'd first? Attention to detail or what? The place was becoming a second village but with a bleeding great steel construction alongside.
Tony Bloom got his cheque-book out big time. In underwriting completion of our Southdowns icon, he became a financier of the first order and could probably run a bank but for personal tax loopholes - allegedly. Anyway, all he wanted for securing our 93M pound future, was to be chairman and so Dick Knight retired upstairs as Mr President. Bloom's stake with at least 75% of the club in his document pocket, sent a customary signal to B&HCC and other interested parties - who breathed a taxing sigh of relief in appreciating a substantial capital gain.
At beginning of Feb, B&HCC approved an application to alter some aspects in line with previous amendments as below. In broad terms this project was now up and running big-time and represented a major contribution to development in the city. 120M pound outlay would provide the stad, an academy, records office, college campus and university renovations. Throw in road and rail infrastructure improvements and we've a huge community facility coming on stream in the next few years.
In Nov pre-excavation work involved archaeology on the site and once go-ahead got given, some heavy earth movers also turned up. There were a few words spoken at an official opening of 17/12/08, then right down to business on the Downs a little left of B'ton Uni.
The baloon went up higher than the proposed trussed roof arch when revised design details were announced. Not only that, completion was put back to 2011. New applications went before B&HCC due to scheduled need for roadworks, apart from enforced changes from building regs etc. A contractor was selected to undertake earthworks, create foundations and build and finish structures. Timescales were extended overall but a start date was diaried for December to keep to our club's initial programme. The site was now in possession of BHA but leased from B&HCC. Excavation was top of the stad's list of things to do, though integral road widening and earth moving would kick-off this process. It amounted to a 60 million pound project that was sure to expand and some, even with controlled delays. BHA would monitor every event and manage all aspects of a giant community facility. The club intended liaison with a gamut of diverse organisations concerned, to ensure a phased work in progress, coming on stream and successful launch.

YES! 24 July 2007

For Brighton fans, there was an over-riding feeling that the goal of elevating the only Football League Club in vast catchment areas of Sussex and beyond was at least achievable. As far back as many can remember a new ground was spoken about, with belief one day it would actually happen. The twin towns of Brighton & Hove then became a city and a philosophy of expecting those things that are included in such status, finally gave support to the Albion. Historically it was the University that provided a training ground and helped with facilities in a frustrating era starting well over three decades ago. Mike Bamber, our charismatic Chairman of the seventies and eighties said, 'you name it, it has happened at Brighton'. He could not look into a bleak future but wanted to put BHA on an equal footing with others in a top flight. That same desire is very prevalent today, if not more so as civic authorities are now behind these noble aspirations. We stood together (at a few away games anyway) awaiting a 'final' decision, knowing in principle a new stadium was acceptable on a site within B&H boundaries - which is where we want it to be Albion's home. Entrenched stalemate that strangled broader Falmer discussion cannot again be polarised, as HM Government eventually reached its definitive conclusion. There somehow has to be a meeting of minds, that will show all previous participants can accept a 'collective' decision without dissent. This through realisation, will actually be of benefit. From then, we progress to an elevated quality of life for all those in the immediate area - where emphasis is in balancing and maintaining a new order for a 21st century Sussex.

Gordon Brown becomes PM - more delay.
A report is leaked to show National Park limit as outside Falmer site! CPRE slam government for failure to secure borders in 'good time'.
Seagulls Party candidates stand in LDC wards.
Fans walk from centre to Sheepcote and take well over time stated by opponents.
LDC concede defeat on extending opposition.
Falmer Parish Council say Moulsecoombe residents could not make the grade working at our new stadium.
University students voted to oppose stadium plans.
Lewes DC rubbished Albion winning a community club of the year award in their communications to SoS communities and local affairs department.
Deadline for submissions to SoS Ruth Kelly passed before end of the month. LDC inter-nets an og with 'sexed up' dossier on their web site. They hit on Sheepcote Valley as their no.1 and sited no particular probs for transport or travel. Lewes District Council were up to their old procrastination tricks, usurping planning rules & regs by demanding an extra extension to prep time, in order to revamp their anti portfolio. They want some sort of super consultant involved.
Dick Knight and Martin Perry met with Lewes MP Norman Baker to clear the air on certain issues and have frank and open discussions. Baker said, 'it looks as if we may thankfully, at last be entering the final straight'. The formerly hostile LDC henchman is still strongly opposed to BHA at Falmer. In accepting that a resolving of Lib-Dems delaying tactics is one step further down a shared Village Way, BHA extended the hand of community friendship by making Baker see what good work is done on our side of the border. He was very impressed and will no doubt see the light in time.

PRESCOTT and an official flaw

On the morning of 28 October 2005, Brightonfans.com were one of the very first to announce 'Yes' - a verdict then just released by the ODPM, that upheld Falmer as the number one site for a community stadium. The case for Falmer hung in the balance after a first Public Inquiry. An apathetic anti lobby, presented as a pro-environment and conservation of ecology alliance, held sway with initial intractable Inspectors (PI1). In the second instant (PI2), the anti alliance had to prove conclusively a viable alternative was forthcoming. Whereas in other localities a stadium would routinely be built at city limits, part of Brighton's problem was availability of land encompassed at the foot of surrounding South Downs. Further, an error in that paperwork actually granting planning permission left a loophole opponents could effectively exploit by seeking a Judicial Review.
Brighton & Hove Albion may have lost three consecutive League 1 fixtures by OCTOBER '06 but has critically won a point of conjecture in an ongoing out-of-court battle of Falmer with Lewes District Council. This undemocratic body guessed they could prolong legal processes as much as possible but were out manoeuvred by the FC, who instigated a preliminary hearing (4/10/06) to circumvent formal High Court action. LDC realised the whistle was about to blow at the 90th minute for extra time and substituted their future protracted tactics, reverting to plan A. The government solicitor had previously offered matters be referred to Communities Minister Ruth Kelly, for inspection and consultation. This would include due consideration of all such questions LDC raised by way of challenge. Therefore a conclusive situation BHA and B&H city council actively encouraged, was available again as a method of categorically reaching an incontrovertible decision.
The gist of Lewes DC's ongoing argument concerned the associated AONB. In a strange twist of fate, BHAFC applied first to B&HCC for planning permission within Unitary boundaries at Village Way. Clearly of necessity, adjacent land for an immediate transport 'drop-off' area was required, alongside the Droveway but fell into LDC's non-rural patch - although seemingly they viewed it as an act of heinous bureaucratic provocation. This 'parcel' has subsequently been grabbed by all those organisations the sub-county authority purport to represent like CPRE, to be passed around as 'prime downland' on a sensitive chalk slope. So a perceived audacious application to tarmac right up to a natural roadside boundary, was actually equally valid because proposed National Park limits were not originally established but open to public consultations. However, common sense arguments did not prevail and a myriad of minor groups like the Society of Sussex Downsmen, fought to register remote ploughed up 'set-aside' as an integral field of regional recreational importance. Let's face it, there would be a bloody good carpark ready for expected out of county tourists, wishing to partake of a new NP promoted 'perfect' landscape. And remember, there would anyhow be an all year right of access to popular heritage in 'unspoilt countryside', as the ever trampled South Downs Way becomes some sort of back packers or mass ramblers' super highway to Brighton - not just a little busy beauty spot on alternate autumn/winter Saturday afternoons. Slight infiltration of the AONB didn't really usurp the hold LDC attempted to justify but they can't stay elected ad infinitum and eventually, power exerted by those National Park civil administrators will make rescinding outdated byelaws the only true vocation of small town 'representatives'.

PI2 decision of 28/10/05

How we broke the news on Brightonfans -
A day that can be book-marked in annals of Brighton & Hove Albion history, legend and folklore. Following an interminable wait since a second Public Inquiry concluded. The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister has just announced a YES verdict to uphold arguments for Falmer as the no.1 site for a community stadium. That decision vindicates BHA and B&H City Council's application and planning consent all along, as the preferred option and optimum location. It was the proper outcome and a right and just decision.
All possible sites were subject to ODPM selection parameters and sequential testing. AONB, National Park and other boundary issues were not allowed to 'muddy the field' as before. The chosen example of Falmer was always a strong one to try and defeat. Opponents were hard put to counter its plus points and had to accept inevitability of losing their challenge. Given a site would be decided, on evidence similarly weighed up, it should duly be accepted and Falmer was clearly the best option.
A way forward would be to consider job creation, regeneration and area links with education and transport to those of impact on other close populations. Perhaps talk with local residents, 'green groups' and assorted interested parties could be scheduled to allay fears and work out problems. There is still an issue with the proposed National Park that officially put it into a tourist category and a potential threat to those in or on its borders. This is as complex an issue as declining development for an adjacent stadium. When building is approved, both sides can help one another through with a supposed, 'new project' to manage.
That there are also two Universities in proximity cannot go unnoticed. A study, educational, sports and medical initiative can be undertaken. A major learning centre for the wider community will also be available. Policies targeting employment and critically, unemployment can be implemented too, as a result of expanding those benefits a community stadium will bring to our city.

THE FULL STORY - opening chapters

Perhaps it is pertinent to peruse the factual background to yet another Falmer decision.

* FUNDAMENTAL Factors First: subject to planning permission guidelines.
+ transportation impact assessment.
+ highways issues, including sustainable modes.
+ stadium management, wrt to on/off site procedures.
+ immediate community needs and benefits.
+ employment aspects.
+ social and schools programs etc.
+ landscape, conservation and ecology.
+ noise & lighting.
+ footprint, landscaping measures.

* IMPORTANT initial issues: with other national classifications.
Complexities of the debate were compounded not only by rules and regs that applied such as above PPGs but also in circumstances revealed on study of an alternative proposals map.
+ Where as in other situations a stadium would routinely be built at city limits (Stoke, Derby, Reading etc) part of the problem is, available land forever encompassed at the foot of surrounding South Downs. It applies especially at Falmer but also to some extent at Sheepcote Valley, Waterhall and Toads Hall valley.
+ Indeed add to the debate equations including AONB & NP, SSI, SSSI and a myriad of other classifications and permissions are necessarily refused. Factor in conservation around sensitive chalk slopes and we are treading on open downland, covering potentially heavy ground.
AONB - area of outstanding natural beauty . NP - National Park . SSI - Site of Scientific Interest . SSSI - Site of Special Scientific Interest.

* PERTINENT points perused: categories for considerations.
In arguing a case against Falmer, there has to be a better alternative derived, that test key points set out for the stadium footprint at Village Way.
+ Location - availability, accessability and sequential possibility.
+ Sighting - green/brown field, urban/semi-rural/rural/mixed.
+ Transport - road/rail links, car/coach parking, park & ride.
+ Design - optimum 'fitting in' of stadium with surroundings.
+ Funding - land purchase, highway works, leases, permissions.
+ Development - possible associated commercial or business/retail/leisure.
+ Employment - construction/operation, regeneration areas, local economy
+ Neighbours - lighting/noise, stewarding/policing, litter, behaviour.
+ Opportunities - sporting/educational needs, further education, medical and conference facilities.

* IN BRIEF - original case for Falmer (at PI1)
BHA and B&H City Council lodged a strong case and appeared to have done their homework concerning planning merits. Premise for development on the edge of Falmer and AONB (NP) boundaries did not contradict with guidelines but dovetailed with salient points.
+ Impact on a landscape at an urban fringe, struck a balance between conservation and local economic needs. Detail was of course more extensive, however the scope of PPG7 had been fully addressed.
+ In defining the project under sports stadia, transport, noise and management issues PPG17, 13 & 6 were applied. Volumes of evidence were presented as to site selection, access to sustainable and public transport and environmental sensititvity.
+ PPG15 with its references to various relationships for listed buildings, character and nature, might have been more contentious. Again proposals were comprehensively argued to have met all considerations, so not to be of detriment. The application given final approval, will also fulfil other conditions imposed by B&HCC and possible caveats issued via the overseeing Government Minister.

BEGINNING, middle and an end

* EARLY History - pre Public Inquiries
Our opponents in the NIMBY and other factions of a burgeoning Anti-Alliance (A-A), long voiced grievances for the recognition of alternative sites. These had actually been much on a draft play-list from outset and were rightly subject to initial sequential testing. Remember we are talking about days long before a BHA homecoming and when B&H were separate towns!
+ It was from 1998 that drafts of Borough Local Plans incorporated a public need for a stadium. Falmer was 'tested' and thus became the chosen site after lengthy deliberations and a referendum in 1999. In fact an enlightened University of Brighton first developed a strategy for sport within this token area. Albion were busily involved returning to Sussex and seemingly could be excused not prioritising Town & Country (1990) Planning Acts. All the same they soon became a proactive partner and Applicant, to gain permission for a B&H Policy to develop a selective candidate site.
+ With Albion housed at Withdean, our ex-McAlpine director now FCCE, headed a team to produce the Falmer application. It was estimated six million pounds alone would be necessary just to establish infrastructure. An optimistic three years from pen to trowel was allocated for project completion. The significant year 2000 was intended to launch a package, plus presentations to the new City Council and various interested parties.
+ Further consultations would be required before submission into the revised Local Plan. BHA then encountered their devious rivals and were shocked by leaking of the Vantagepoint Report, which spread mis-information against us. A tactic A-A PR have used frequently and fraudulently in many years since, up to last day.
+ Alternative sites were always considered and analysed but general bulk of paperwork was steered toward and focussed on land at city limits. In 2001 amendments to said Local Plan were published and a Public Inquiry forecast. A-A assembled a portfolio as battle lines were scraped across a brown field at the foot of a chalk slope.
+ Due process also involved BHA dealing with the Uni's of Sussex and Brighton as 'landowners'. Indeed this complex and intricate arrangement delayed a draft scheme formally receiving adoption, beyond outline principles. So there appears to be extra mitigating circumstances to add to an already terribly slow procedure. As we all know by now, that was just the start of years of endurance!

* INTERIM - Alternative Sites (at PI2)
If we look at various objections to Falmer, these could apply to different places and almost a reversal of roles was applicable at the second Public Inquiry.
+ Original objectors were no longer defending as local authority, stand-offish neighbours or area custodians. It was incumbent on the A-A think-tank to now prove such an alternative site more suitable. Incidentally those 'north of the border' antagonists pulled in additional Rule 6 'experts' and fringe bodies from beyond outer limits!
+ A fundamental moan and groan was against transport interchange and highway matters. Counsel for the no-go lobby, asserted a stadium of such scale and travel demand should be near town centres and major public transport infrastructure. Their scepticism for Falmer, where sustainable modes are deliverable, was suspect for pin-pointing such very viable capabilities elsewhere.
+ In assessing a better spot for a stadium, certain criteria must apply. '...namely, one which would not have the same planning objections or would not have them to the same effect'. So it became a sort of flip-side scenario to the B&HCC (business land parcel) versus Lewes District Council (AONB) prolonged border war. New conventions allowed a superior battlefield to be chosen.

* FALMER for all
A glance at the short-list indicates that a comparison with our first choice gives a tick box deficit straight away. Inferiority of these individual locations does not qualify testing for secondary costs, safety and management schemes, or environmental and visual impacts.
+ Brighton Station - site under construction.
+ Shoreham Harbour - very expensive road reconstructions required via Government sanction.
+ Hove Greyhounds - too small in residential district.
+ Withdean - substantial makeover to C21 dictates.
+ Sheepcote Valley - quantum leap to be viable.
+ Toads Hall Valley - private area, flatters to deceive.
+ Waterhall - precedent for location and environment type.

Once upon a time, Brighton fans wanted to build a new stadium. First the powers that be said 'no, try again'. Time passed slowly. Then they said 'yes but try again anyway'. More time passed very slowly. Yet again, although so much later, they finally said, 'oh, ok go on then, so sorry about all those hold ups!'

Fatman Slims