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TEAM-MATES WITH ADAM EL-ABD

31 May 2019

Paul Hazlewood
Adam Al-Abd joins his team-mates for a squad photo in 2011.

Former Brighton & Hove Albion defender Adam El-Abd shared the field with hundreds of players during his time on the south coast, and we caught up with him to speak about some team-mates from years gone by.

The current Wycombe Wanderers captain made in excess of 300 appearances for the Seagulls after more than a decade with the club, as he enjoyed two promotions at the Withdean Stadium before moving to the Amex.

El-Abd spent a handful of years in the same side as Albion’s goalscoring record-chaser Glenn Murray, and the 34-year-old spoke about his former team-mate’s qualities, which have enabled him to score goals in the top tiers of English football.

He said, “Glenn came off the bench to make his debut at Northampton and I remember us struggling around that time. We lost the match 1-0 but the following game was when Glenn showed exactly what he was capable of.

Bennett Murray.jpg

“He scored twice on his first start against Crewe and you could tell a partnership between himself and Fozzy [Nicky Forster] might develop.

“To think what he’s done since, working his way into the Premier League and scoring goals on a consistent basis at such a high level — you have to take your hat off to him, he’s done exceptionally well.

“As a defender, you always know when you’re up against a quality striker because they work on your blind side. The moment you take your eyes off them, they’ve gone out of sight, snuck in behind you and the next thing you know the balls in the back of the net.

“That’s exactly what Glenn was like — he’s never been blessed with pace but he’s a very intelligent footballer.”

El-Abd Claps.jpg

At the opposite end of the field, El-Abd heaped praise on one centre-back partner in particular, after the 34-year-old enjoyed one of his most successful seasons and won the club’s Player of the Season award in 2011.

“I played alongside a lot of central defenders during my time with the club," he continued. "But me and Gordon Greer seemed to hit it off and formed a solid partnership.

“We played a lot of games together during that final season at the Withdean and it seemed like we were both on the same wavelength.

“The likes of Wayne Bridge, Bruno, Inigo Calderon and others were also a pleasure to play alongside as we moved into the Amex. Together, as a unit, we managed to achieve success on the pitch.

Gordon Greer Burnley 01SEP12 PH 2735_001.jpg

“Gordon was a great communicator, very clever with his positional sense and in some ways made my job easier.

“I’ve never been a tall defender, so the style of football we were trying to play suited me, but we were both prepared to do the other side of the game when necessary.

“Liam Bridcutt was also an important player for the team at that time — he provided great cover in front of us and broke up the play.

“Obviously I played alongside numerous centre-halves throughout my time with the club, such as Guy Butters, Danny Cullip, Joel Lynch, Tommy Elphick and Mathew Upson, but Gordon is definitely the one that sticks out for me.”


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