One such meeting came in April 2008 when at the 25th anniversary dinner of the Albion’s 1983 FA Cup run I met Michael Robinson at the Grand Hotel, who sadly died on Tuesday aged 61, after a long fight with cancer.
Robinson kindly joined me on my BBC Radio Show at the Withdean the following day, and regaled tales of not only the Cup run but the glory days at the Goldstone in the early 80's.
He previously joined Manchester City, aged 19, from Preston in the summer of 1979 - it was then a record fee for a teenager of £750,000.
But things didn’t work out at Maine Road under the enigmatic Malcom Allison and just 12 months later Robinson headed south to Brighton for an apparent ‘knockdown fee’ of £400,000. It was a superb bit of business by then Seagulls boss Alan Mullery.
And so started a three year period which saw him pull on an Albion shirt 113 times, scoring 37 goals in the process.
He will be remembered by many for scoring Albion’s winner in the FA Cup semi-final at Highbury, and whilst as a wide-eyed 18-year-old I will never forget that day in North London, two other goals also stay in my memory.
In his first season at the Goldstone, with four games left, the Albion were entrenched in the relegation zone and looked doomed.
They then beat, Palace, Sunderland, Leicester City and then Leeds United at a packed Goldstone to stay up, his goal that day will stay with me forever, as will the one at White Hart Lane six months when the Albion humbled the mighty Tottenham Hotspur, complete with messrs Hoddle, Clemence, Ardiles and Villa.
That season, 81-82, the Albion finished a creditable 13th in the old First Division, still the club’s highest finish in Brighton’s history.
In that team, by then managed by Mike Bailey, Robinson had a very successful front pairing with Andy Ritchie, and ability-wise I feel they should be in front of both Ward and Zamora in any all time Albion XI.
The man I idolised, a quarter of a century before, treated me as an equal, something I’ve never forgotten to this day. It was probably one of the most memorable times I put a microphone under the nose of a guest.
After the Cup final, Liverpool snapped Robbo up, and in a short stint at Anfield he won the League, League Cup and European Cup, a fitting tribute to his obvious abilities.
After finishing his career in Spain he later enjoyed great success in the media, becoming the Desmond Lynam of Spanish TV.
I will never forget Michael Robinson the Albion forward, but equally Michael Robinson the man.
Rest in peace Robbo. You truly were an Albion legend.
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