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ALBION AND READING FIVE-A-SIDE TEAM

7 March 2015


A five-a-side team comprised of legendary Brighton & Hove Albion and Reading players over the years.

John Keeley (Goalkeeper)
A superb goalkeeper renowned for his safe handling and agility. He cost just £1500 when he joined the club from Chelmsford City in August 1986, making his debut against Ipswich Town in October 1986. While the 1986/87 season ended in relegation, he played 20 League matches and provided strong competition to Perry Digweed. Indeed, in 1987/88, Keeley was ever-present and was voted Albion’s ‘Player of the Season’ as the club secured promotion back to the Second Division at the first attempt. He was sold to Oldham Atheltic for a £240000 in 1990, joining Reading on loan in February 1992. He is currently a goalkeeping coach at Blackburn, having served Brighton in this role in the Withdean era from 2001 to 2007.

Stewart Henderson (Defender)
Sturdy and methodical, Henderson was described by John Vinicombe as 'the quiet man of the side, and rarely flustered.' This Scot won three schoolboy caps and joined Albion after a spell at Chelsea. As an 18-year-old, he made his debut for Brighton towards the end of the 1965/66 season. He established himself as the regular right-back from 1968 onwards, pleasing the Goldstone crowds with his solid tackling and overlapping, which led to his 'Player of the Season' award in 1969/70. When he was dropped for the crucial match with Aston Villa in March 1972, it marked the beginning of the end of his Brighton playing days. He left on a free transfer to Reading in June 1973, playing in all of the Royals’ four League Cup matches against Brighton in 1974/75.

Paul Clark (Midfield)
Clark added steel and shooting ability from midfield when he joined Brighton in November 1977 from Southend. The deal cost £30,000 with Gerry Fell leaving for Roots Hall. The youngster settled quickly, as shown in a powerful debut performance against Spurs at White Hart Lane that month. He scored in the return fixture in April, and went on to make a significant contribution to the promotion season of 1978/79. However, when First Division football arrived at the Goldstone, Mike Bailey, ‘Tiger’ was loaned by the Seagulls to Reading in October 1981, playing in home defeats to Huddersfield and Chesterfield. 

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Craig Maskell (Striker)
A skillful striker with a knack of creating space to shoot, especially with his back to goal. After playing for Southampton and Huddersfield, this goal poacher commanded a £250000 fee in August 1990 when he signed for Reading. It was the Berkshire side’s joint-highest transfer fee at the time. Maskell scored 26 League goals in his two years with the Royals before switching to Swindon for a similar fee. In Glenn Hoddle’s promotion side, he blossomed, going on to play Premier League football for the Robins before moving back to Southampton in 1994. Brighton bought Maskell in a £40000 deal in March 1996. At the Goldstone, he had a difficult start but found form under new boss Steve Gritt in 1996/97, hitting a hat-trick in the Fans United match against Hartlepool. He hit an impressive 16 goals for the Seagulls in that famous troubled season.

Kevin Bremner (Striker)
The tenacious striker tasted glory soon after joining Reading in August 1985 from Millwall in a £36000 deal. He hit seven goals in his first season as the Royals finished as champions of Division Three in 1985/86. The following campaign he scored three times against Brighton. Barry Lloyd splashed out £65000 for the Scot in July 1987 and Bremner played a big part in Garry Nelson’s superb total of 32 goals in the 1987/88 season. While Kevin contributed 13 goals in the campaign, he failed to score a single League goal in the New Year until the final day, in the crucial victory over Bristol Rovers. In Shoot! Magazine, Bremner commented: “It’s all very relaxed down here and even when I was sent-off pre-season nothing much was said about it. Manager Barry Lloyd loves to play entertaining, attacking football so wherever we go and whatever the score, it’s tally-ho, forward we go.” Bremner left to become player-coach at Peterborough United in the summer of 1990.

Mark McGhee (Manager)
A Glasgow-born striker who played in the great Aberdeen side of the 1980s, alongside future Seagulls campaign Doug Rougvie. Both won the European Cup Winners’ Cup in 1983, with McGhee’s cross setting up John Hewitt’s winner in the final against Real Madrid. McGhee went on to play for Hamburg, Celtic and had a second spell at Newcastle United before finishing his playing career at Reading. He managed the wonderfully entertaining Royals side that gained promotion from Division Two (third tier) in 1993/94 and agonisingly failed to win promotion to the top flight the following season, despite finishing runners-up. At Brighton, McGhee led Brighton back to the second tier with a play-off victory in 2003/04, thanks to Leon Knight’s penalty in a 1-0 victory over Bristol City. He did well to keep the Seagulls up in 2004/05 despite a shoestring budget. Although dismissed in 2006, McGhee returned to Withdean in July 2010 as his Aberdeen side faced the Seagulls in a pre-season friendly.

UPCOMING HOME FIXTURES

ALBION V WOLVES

SATURDAY 14TH MARCH, KICK-OFF 3PM


ALBION V NORWICH

FRIDAY 3RD APRIL, KICK-OFF 3PM



ALBION V BOURNEMOUTH

FRIDAY 10TH APRIL, KICK-OFF 7.45PM



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