Brighton and Hove Albion
The Seagulls swooped into the Premier League by finishing runners up to the Magpies and winning automatic promotion from the EFL Championship. Brighton and Hove Albion have returned to top flight football after a thirty-four year break.
The last time the Seagulls played at the highest level in English football was 1983. Since then, the club has faced difficult times, losing their home stadium, having to spend two seasons over 70 miles away at Gillingham and dropping down the football league.
In 1999, the club found a new home at Withdean Stadium a converted athletics track. Despite the size and limitations of their new home, the Seagulls worked hard and climbed back up the divisions to the Championship.
In 2009, Tony Bloom took over as chairman and secured investment in a new stadium and the club’s fortunes started to improve. The Falmer Stadium, which is now known as The Amex Stadium, welcomed Brighton and Hove Albion for their first match in 2011 and will host Premier League football for the first time this season.
What will Brighton bring to the Premier League? A great city, a great fan base, an amazing stadium which will be sold out every game, and hopefully we will do the city and our supporters proud.
Tony Bloom, Brighton’s owner.
Club: Brighton and Hove Albion
Nickname: The Seagulls
Stadium: The Amex Stadium
Stadium Capacity: 30,750
Manager: Chris Hughton
Last season: 2nd in Championship
Colours: Blue and white stripes (home) black with yellow trim (away)
Record signing: Matthew Ryan from Valencia (SPA) £5.1M
Fact: When Everton visit Brighton on the 14th of October, it will be the first time that the two teams play against each other for 34 years.
What do we know about Brighton & Hove Albion?
Has Brighton ever played in the Premier League?
No, never. The last season that Brighton and Hove Albion played top flight English football was 1982-83.
Which players should we keep an eye on?
English forward Glen Murray scored 23 times for the Seagulls in the season that saw them reach the Premier League for the first time. At 33 years old, the striker brings Premier League experience with Bournemouth and Crystal Palace.
Anthony Knockaert, the French attacking midfielder is another player that fans and opposing defenders will want to keep an eye on. Last season, he scored 15 times and provided 8 assists.
Where is Brighton?
Brighton and Hove is a city in the county of East Sussex on the south coast of England. The city is almost due south of London and is a popular seaside resort for people from the capital. The towns of Brighton and Hove were neighbours, but over time, as the towns grew, the two towns merged and in 1997 their councils joined together. In 2001, the combined authority was given city status.
Who is Brighton's manager?
Brighton and Hove Albion’s manager is Chris Hughton. He spent most of his playing career playing for Tottenham Hotspur, representing the club 297 times. In 1979, he was the first mixed race player to play for the Republic of Ireland. Since he hung up his boots, he’s managed Spurs, Newcastle, Birmingham, Norwich before taking over at Brighton in 2014.
Who are Brighton's main rivals?
The Seagulls main rivals are the Eagles! Although the club is over 40 miles away, Crystal Palace are the club’s biggest competitors. When the two teams meet, the competition is known as the M23 derby, named after the motorway between south London and Sussex. Historically, the teams are evenly matched, both clubs have beaten their rivals 37 times and drawn 24 times.
Round and about
In this section, we take a look at some cultural and social aspects of life in the UK that are directly related to Brighton and Hove and its surrounding areas. Brighton and Hove is on the south coast of England in the county of East Sussex. If you ever plan a visit to see the Seagulls, the following might be useful.
What is the Brighton Pavillion?
If you ever visit Brighton, you might be surprised to see the golden domes and minarets of the Royal Pavilion. The Pavilion was built in 1787 as a seaside retreat for George, The Prince of Wales, who later became the Prince Regent and then King George IV. The Pavilion was built by John Nash and is a fantasy of Indo-Saracenic architecture.
What else is there to see in Brighton?
Brighton and Hove sit on an unbroken stretch of shingle beach. Shingle is another word for pebbles. So it’s a good place to sit and enjoy the sea air, but not so great if you want to build sandcastles.
There are lots of quirky shops and restaurants in Brighton in an area called the Lanes. These are a higgledy-piggledy mess of narrow pedestrianised shopping streets. It’s a good place to wander around and look for gifts.
Is there a pier?
Brighton has a fantastic pier called the Brighton Palace Pier. It was built in 1899 and is over 500m long. There are traditional games, arcades, restaurants and fairground rides.
What is Brighton Rock?
Brighton Rock is the title of a novel by Graham Greene about a criminal gang in Brighton in the 1930s. The book is named after a traditional sweet that is sold at seaside resorts in the UK called rock. Rock is a hard cylindrical candy with the name of the resort written inside the stick. This book is not the only cultural connection to gangs and Brighton. Quadrophenia is a British film that has a large cult following and a lot of the film was set in Brighton. The film is about two gangs (the Mods and the Rockers) who meet (and fight) on a bank holiday weekend in Brighton.
Can you have a good night out in Brighton?
Brighton is a great night out and many people visit the city for its many bars and clubs in the city. It is also famous for its many live music venues with a strong emphasis on electronic music. Fatboy Slim, the world famous DJ, lives in Brighton and is a big fan and actually owns 12% of the football club. Brighton also has the largest LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender) community in the UK. Many LGBT charities are based in Brighton and Brighton Pride, held every August, is one of the biggest Pride festivals in the UK.
In this section, we would like you to practise your English listening skills. Have a listen to Norman, who is a Brighton fan and try to answer the questions below. If the listening is too difficult, you can read the dialogue at the same time.
- What is Norman looking forward to about the Premier League?
- Which place does Norman recommend you visit?
- Where does Norman think Norman will finish this season?
Journalist: So, we’re joined now by Norman, a Brighton and Hove Albion fan. Now, Quentin, Brighton and Hove Albion have made it to the Premier League for the first time. How do you think they’ll do?
Norman: Back in April, we were playing Wigan. We were two up then Wigan got one back, but when the final whistle blew, we went mad. It was a wonderful night. Now, we’ve got a challenge - it’s all right thinking about the past, but right here, right now, we’ve got the Premier League. We’ve just got to take one match at a time ... eat, sleep, football, repeat ... if you know what I mean.
Journalist: But you must be excited?
Norman: Yeah! I’m going out of my head! It’s going to be great. What Tony Bloom and Chris Hughton have done for us - really, if I met Chris, I’d be like ... I can’t praise you enough.
Journalist: Brighton and Hove Albion have had some difficult times over the years. How does it feel now you’re back in the top league?
Norman: I was 20 when we were relegated back when it was the first division. And then we lost The Goldstone because the club had some bad debts and we had to play at Gillingham for two seasons. But now, before the match, at our new amazing stadium, when I’m putting my lucky shirt on, I say to myself: you’ve come a long way, baby.
Journalist: What are you most looking forward to this season?
Norman: Palace. Crystal Palace. I have a friend from London who supports them and whenever they play here, I invite him down. I tell him, you’re not from Brighton, but when it comes to football, you’ve got to feel the love, drop the hate and we’ll all have a good time.
Journalist: Finally, what’s your prediction for this season?
Norman: It’s going to be tough for us when we have to face the big teams, but it’s going to be fun. I’d love it if we were champions ... sounds like a bit of a dream. I’d be ... well, I'd be in heaven, man, but more realistically - middle of the table ... that’d be great.
In all of our club pages, we encourage you to find out more about each Premier League club. Searching for information in English can be a great way to improve your language skills. We have three general knowledge questions and we want to see if you can find the answers. Beware! Some of the questions are quite difficult!
What did Brighton and Hove Albion temporarily rename their stadium to in 2004 when they hosted the launch party of a Fatboy Slim album?
Why did Prince George become the Prince Regent?
West Bromwich Albion ... Brighton and Hove Albion ... What does Albion mean?