WHERE ARE THEY NOW?
We catch up with Brighton’s 1987-88 Division Three runners-up
KEVIN BREMNER had already won two promotions in three seasons from Division Three with Millwall and Reading when he arrived at the Goldstone Ground in July 1987.
The Scot, who had started his professional career with a relegation at Colchester United, was about to bring his lucky touch to the South Coast.
Brighton had been relegated for the second time in five seasons immediately prior to Bremner’s arrival.
Bremner had the chance of returning to Millwall, who had claimed a place in the First Division for the only time in their history, but Brighton trumped their offer.
“I got more money to go to Brighton than I was offered by Millwall,” said Bremner. “Brighton had come out of the First Division a few years earlier and some of the lads were still on First Division wages.
“When I got what I asked for at Brighton, I couldn’t believe it. I doubled my wages. They were a huge club – indeed they still are.”
Sunderland ran away with the title, finishing nine points ahead of Brighton, who were two ahead of third-placed Walsall.
The Saddlers went on to win the play-offs.
Promotion was secured in the last game when Bristol Rovers were beaten 2-1 at the Goldstone, thanks to goals from Bremner and Garry Nelson, who netted 22 for the campaign. But, despite the champagne corks popping in the dressing room, Bremner said he and fellow Scot Doug Rougvie decided against hitting the town.
“Nigel Martyn was in goal for Bristol Rovers at the time and they were a good team, but they weren’t good enough to stop us!” he said.
“I scored the first after a cross from the left. It was either Dean Wilkins or Garry Nelson who crossed. I cannot remember.
“Then Garry scored the second.
“But the thing I really remember about that season is that Doug and I didn’t go out on the town to celebrate promotion.
“Doug was staying in Angmering and I was in West Worthing, but we didn’t go out. We just stayed with our families and ended up playing football with our kids in the street.”
1. Mark Leather: After spending 20 years in the game in various capacities, he now runs his own practice and is a senior lecturer at University of Central Lancashire.
2. Richard Tiltman: A forward who went into financial services and has run his own business, CTW Financial Services, in Worthing for the last 17 years.
3. Trevor Wood: Goalkeeper who won one Northern Ireland cap and is now living and working in Pevensey, near Eastbourne. 4. Gerry Armstrong: Striker who twice won the Home Championship with Northern Ireland. He managed Worthing and had two spells as Northern Ireland assistant manager. Now a TV pundit. 5. Grant Horscroft: Central defender who made two first-team appearances and went back to working in insurance. He is now a data controller for a fastener distributor, TR Fastenings 6. Mike Trusson: Midfielder who helped Sheffield United to two promotions. He was first-team coach at Bournemouth and is now scouting for West Brom. 7. Garry Nelson: Striker who had promotions with Southend and Plymouth and is now based in Essex, where he has a number of business interests including golf holidays and an insurance firm. 8. Dale Jasper: Full-back who was a play-off winner with Crewe Alexandra. Now based in South Wales and has worked in the building industry. 9. John Keeley: Goalkeeper who played more than 100 times for Brighton for whom he also served as goalkeeping coach and kit man. He is now head of goalkeeper coaching at Portsmouth. 10. Damian Webber: Central defender who helped Crawley Town win their first ever Sussex Senior Cup. He worked in the rail industry and is now head of commercial at Modus Utilities. 11. Ted Streeter: Had a background in civil engineering and then became Brighton’s youth development officer. He later opened his own football academy in Horsham. 12. Barry Lloyd: Managed Yeovil and Worthing before taking charge of Brighton. He worked in a BMW dealership and then returned to Brighton as a scout. 13. Steve Gatting: Centre-half and brother of former England cricket captain Mike, he played in the 1983 FA Cup final. Coached Christ’s Hospital School and Arsenal Under-23s. His son, Joe, also played for Brighton. 14. Chris Hutchings: Defender who managed Bradford and Wigan in the Premier League. He has held a number of other coaching jobs, his last job being as assistant manager of Barnsley. 15. Rob Isaac: Defender who became a personal assistant for the Maktoum racing family and is now working as a chauffeur in West London. 16. Perry Digweed: Goalkeeper who is now living in London. His business interests include property and a chauffeur service in the racing industry. 17. David Gipp: Forward who lives at Barkingside, Essex and earns a living by buying and selling goods. He is also assistant manager of Non-League side Frenford Senior. 18. Ian Chapman: Defender who appeared for the Seagulls in a play-off final. He managed Whitehawk and is now coaching at Lancing College Prep School in Hove. He is also the manager of Burgess Hill Town in the Ryman League Premier Division. 19. John Crumplin: Right-back who has managed a number of Non-League clubs in Sussex and Surrey and is now working in the building industry. 20. Martin Hinshelwood: He served Brighton in a number of capacities including as manager. He is now an academy coach at Lewes. His son, Danny, also played for Albion. 21. Kevan Brown: Full-back who won the FA Trophy three times with Woking. For the last ten years, he has been director of sport at St Francis School, Pewsey, Wiltshire. 22. Darren Hughes: Full-back who won a promotion with Port Vale, where he has a suite named after him. He is now based in his native Prescot and works as a painter and decorator. 23. Kevin Bremner: Striker who also won promotion with Millwall, Reading and Peterborough. Coached at Millwall and Gillingham. Now a sub-contractor in the building trade and starred in a Betfred advert. 24. Doug Rougvie: Scottish international defender who won a Cup Winners’ Cup medal with Aberdeen. Now based in the city as an electrical/instrument designer for engineering firm Costain. 25. Gary Rowell: Midfielder who won two promotions with Sunderland. After being a financial consultant in Burnley, he now works on radio and is a columnist for the Sunderland Echo. 26. Dean Wilkins: Held various posts for Brighton after hanging up his boots, before moving on to Southampton, where he has been assistant manager and now firstteam coach. 27. Steve Penney: Northern Ireland international winger. Went to the 1986 Mexico World Cup and now lives in his native Ballymena where he became an optician.
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