Brighton & Hove Albion played Reading twice towards the end of the 1956/57 season. It was two goals a piece at Elm Park in March 1957. Then, a month later, the teams were drawing 3-3 at the Goldstone Ground at the interval. Billy Lane’s half-time team talk must have done the trick as Albion scored five times without reply in the second half, with Albert Mundy bagging a hat-trick. Here is the matchday programme.
The result was doubly sweet for Lane, who had featured upfront for the Royals in the late 1920s. Throughout most of Lane’s long spell as Brighton boss from 1951 to 1961, long-serving Glen Wilson was a fixture as an inside forward.
It continued a family tradition, as Glen’s older brother Joe had played for Albion from 1936 to 1947.
After Lane’s successor, George Curtis, was dismissed in February 1963, Joe was made caretaker manager up to April. His first taste of victory came in an improbable 5-4 success as Elm Park. However, it was another five years before Brighton beat Reading at the Goldstone. Alex Dawson and Howard Wilkinson got the second-half goals in a 2-0 win in December 1968 as Albion began a run of form to rise from the Division Three relegation zone to mid-table by the end of the season. Once again, you can read the matchday programme here.
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Into the 1970s, Peter Taylor’s Brighton side were involved in an epic League Cup first round encounter with the Royals in 1974/75 that took four matches to settle. A photo from the 3-2 defeat at the Goldstone can be found in this article.
In the 1980s, the clubs faced each on two occasions, in November and December 1986. Reading won 2-1 at Elm Park before drawing 1-1 at the Goldstone, with Steve Penney getting both goals for the Seagulls. Mullery was in his second spell as Brighton manager and you can read his pre-match comments here.
His successor in the Albion hotseat, Barry Lloyd, suffered a poor end to the season, with the side sliding from 13th to finish bottom of Division Three at the end of 1986/87. However, the club enjoyed a renaissance the following season, bouncing back to the Second Division, thanks in part to Kevin Bremner. Here’s an Albion birthday card signed by the ex-Reading striker.
Brighton’s financial difficulties played their part as the club dropped back to the third tier in 1992. However, it was a problem of a different kind when Reading turned up at the Goldstone with a changed kit that clashed with the Seagulls in September 1992. The result was that Lloyd’s men played in the famous ‘Chewits’ away kit even though they were at home.