Brighton aim to finally break dismal record at Goodison Park

The 17 meetings between Albion and Everton have seen just three wins for The Seagulls. All of these victories have come at home, with no success on our travels to Goodison Park.
Can Brighton break their run of bad results at Goodison Park?Can Brighton break their run of bad results at Goodison Park?
Can Brighton break their run of bad results at Goodison Park?

Albion's recent away form has been good however, and the performance at Newcastle brings hope that the winless run can end this Saturday.

Prior to the recent wins in the Premier League, the last victory against the Toffees came back in February 1982.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Mike Bailey’s Albion were 8th in Division One and dreaming of a top-half finish. Despite this, the manager’s tactics were being called into question by some sections of the Goldstone crowd, who saw Bailey’s tactics as dour and lacklustre.

In his ‘From the Manager’s Chair’ column, Bailey looked to defend his style of play and started by stressing the importance of a good defence. “You don’t build a skyscraper from the top, you start with the foundations”.

He pointed to recent success for teams like Nottingham Forest who, when they won the European Cup against Hamburg, “were able to cope with pressure for much of the game but their defensive organisation allowed them to win a trophy."

Perhaps summing up his attitude, Bailey says “I am prepared to put up with some criticism, but I am not looking for a ‘one-off’ season. If we went out in every game and attacked non-stop and were relegated, we would get no thanks from anyone”.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

To reinforce this, he opted for his settled line-up for the game against Everton. Graham Moseley was the rock in goal, behind Gary Stevens, Sammy Nelson, Steve Foster and Steve Gatting.

In midfield, Jimmy Case and Neil McNab provided the steel, with Gerry Ryan and Tony Grealish completing a strong quartet. Up front, Gordon Smith and Andy Ritchie provided the spearhead to a powerful Albion line-up.

Crowds were on the decline and just over 16,000 turned up for the game, which could have seen Albion move up to 5th. The ever-present threat of hooliganism had affected gates all over the country and in an attempt to make a better environment for fans, Albion applied to have the perimeter fence in front of the West Stand replaced with less intrusive bars.

Those that did turn up, on a cold crisp afternoon, were rewarded with an excellent performance by the Seagulls. Despite his defensive duties, Tony Grealish found time and space to open the scoring and we went in at half-time with a slender advantage.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The second half was all Albion and although Everton scored early on, goals from Gerry Ryan and Steve Foster gave us the three points and a 3-1 victory.

Other results that day meant we remained in 8th place but our remaining 19 games yielded just 4 victories and 12 defeats.

This still led to our (to date) highest ever top-flight finish, but the style of play and worsening financial issues left fans feeling frustrated.

Everton went on to finish in 8th and over the next few seasons were to enjoy the most prolific period in their history.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Mike Bailey lasted until December 1982 when he was replaced by Jimmy Melia, who led us to the FA Cup Final later that season.

Everton have made a good start to the Premier League season, but Albion have also been playing well, if not getting the results our play deserves.

We are well overdue a result at Goodison Park – perhaps this weekend will be the time.