Ahead of Brighton & Hove Albion’s Premier League game against Watford at the Amex Stadium on Saturday afternoon, we look at three players that have played for both clubs over the years.
The Northern Irishman began his footballing career in his native country, before attracting a move to Tottenham Hotspur in 1975. After five years at White Hart Lane, the striker joined Watford for a club-record fee of £250,000 and after gaining promotion to the top flight, Armstrong scored the club’s first ever goal in England’s top division. The forward made over 75 appearances for the Hornets, but moved to Spain for a two-year spell with Real Mallorca before spells with West Bromwich Albion and Chesterfield. The Seagulls captured the Northern Ireland international on a free transfer in 1986, and his first Albion goal came in a 3-1 defeat against Leeds United at Elland Road. He returned to the south coast from a brief loan spell at Millwall and stayed at the Goldstone Ground until 1989, scoring his final goal against Oxford United and having a short spell as player-manager at the club.
After four years with Chelsea, the left-back joined the Seagulls for £35,000 in 1987 and made over 130 appearances for the club during his three years at the Goldstone Ground. The defender helped Albion win promotion to the second tier of English football in the 1987/88 season, scoring vital goals in three 1-1 draws against Gillingham, Notts County and Aldershot Town. Dublin was named in the PFA Team of the Year for his contribution in Albion’s promotion-winning campaign. Watford came in for Dublin in 1990, and during his four years at Vicarage Road, the defender made over 160 appearances, some of which came in the Premier League after helping the Hornets reach the top division in 1991/92. But Dublin’s time at Watford came to an end in 1994 as he joined Colchester United, where he went on to make his most appearances for a single club.
Watford snapped up Buckley from Rochdale in 2010 after the winger impressed for the League Two side, leaving them top of the league when he left during the January transfer window. Buckley suffered from injuries at the start of his Hornets career, but made his full debut in a 1-1 draw against Middlesbrough and scored his first goal for the club in another 1-1 draw against Preston North End. The winger was awarded the club’s Young Player of the Year award after making 37 appearances and scoring four goals in 2010/11. But ahead of Albion’s first season at the Amex Stadium after gaining promotion to the Championship, manager Gus Poyet made Buckley the club’s record signing as he moved to the south coast for £1 million. Buckley came off the bench in Albion’s first league match at their new stadium to score twice on his debut, overturning the 1-0 lead that Doncaster Rovers had. His second strike came deep into stoppage time and sent Albion’s supporters into raptures on a historic day for the club. Buckley went on to make over 100 appearances for the Seagulls - scoring 19 goals - as the club came close to reaching the Premier League in back-to-back Championship seasons.