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Club News

PARALLEL LINES: LINCOLN

27 January 2017

The connections between the two clubs.


The Kits

While Brighton switched kit manufacturers from Errea to Nike in 2014, Lincoln City went in the opposite direction a year later. Both teams also sported very similar designs by Super League in 1997/98. The Seagulls shirt featured a broad blue vertical band with two narrower blue bands on either side with white as the contrasting colour. Lincoln’s design was red and white, and as a result echoed the Sheffield United kit of the late 1970s. While innovative, the Super League kits proved unpopular with supporters who yearned for the return of traditional stripes.

The FA Cup matches

The first and most recent encounters between the two clubs have both occurred in the FA Cup. In January 1915, second-half goals from Bill Jones and Bert Longstaff helped Brighton to a 2-1 victory in the first round. The Albion were knocked out by Birmingham in the next round after a replay. The Imps had better fortune in November 2003 when they won 3-1 against the Seagulls. Goals from Paul Mayo, Matt Bloomer and Simon Yeo gave the Imps a mighty 3-0 lead before  Chris McPhee’s consolation goal seven minutes from the end.

The players and managers

The Albion side of the late 1960s featured three players who became Imps later on in their careers. Left-back Willie Bell played superbly for Brighton in 1969/70 before leaving controversially for Birmingham City in the summer, alongside manager Freddie Goodwin. He succeeded Goodwin as boss at St Andrews in 1975 before beginning a ten-month spell in the Sincil Bank hotseat from December 1977. Striker Alan Gilliver was another Goodwin signing, joining from Rotherham for free in July 1969. The Yorkshireman hit 16 goals in all competitions in his first season, but mustered just eight the following season before being sold to Lincoln in February 1971 for around £10,000. The deal also took former Albion captain Nobby Lawton to Sincil Bank. Apart from Willie Bell, Phil Stant is the only other Brighton player who became manager of Lincoln City. He played seven matches for the Seagulls in 2001 after his contract as Imps player-manager was terminated.


The winning streaks
 
Brighton and Lincoln City have both enjoyed spells as each other’s bogey sides. From April 1961 to January 1977, the Albion won six successive matches against the Imps. These included a comprehensive 5-1 success at the Goldstone in October 1963 when goals from Bill Cassidy, Keith Webber, Jimmy Collins and a double from Johnny Goodchild took Brighton to fifth position in Division Four. The following year, Brighton won three matches against Lincoln. The Seagulls’ fortunes changed in 1996/97 and 1997/98 when the Imps achieved home and away victories over Brighton in successive seasons.

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