Marching on together? The boys in the old Brighton blue

Good old Leeds United. This is a club people love to hate.

Good old Leeds United. This is a club people love to hate.

It stems back to the early 1970s when Don Revie’s teams used to “bully” their opponents, much to the chagrin of the neutral. He changed the club colours to all-white, proclaiming Leeds would become “the best in the world”.

For 10 years, the Peacocks were certainly among the best in England, regularly finishing in the top four and winning the league twice. Their style was deemed arrogant and confrontational by many - and Brian Clough famously lasted only 44 days in the Elland Road hot seat after quitting the Albion in 1974 to replace Revie.

Leeds’s away support is among the best in the country - numbers wise - and their reputation was, at one stage, fearsome. It has calmed in recent years, but 25 years ago things were different.

In April 1990, with Albion looking nervously towards the Division Two drop zone, the Leeds United show rolled into town, top of the league and heading for the title. More than 4,500 Yorkshire folk congregated in the Chicken Run for what turned out to be a cracking contest.

Before the game kicked off, Leeds goalkeeper Mervyn Day somehow contrived to get his feet tangled in the goal netting, much to the amusement of the vociferous Albion fans behind him in the North Stand.

A young Gary Speed fired the visitors ahead early in the first half, before Sergei Gotsmanov equalised with a left-foot strike. The popular Belarussian only wore the stripes 16 times, but he made an impact with his skilful displays. He was last seen driving a school bus in Canada.

Late in the second half, a bizarre own-goal gave Leeds the lead. Gordon Strachan had rounded the on-rushing Perry Digweed and squared the ball across the box. The 19-year-old left-back Ian Chapman - Brighton born and an Albion fan - had it covered as the ball arrived at his feet, six yards out. Unfortunately, the ball bobbled up, hit his shin, and meekly crossed the line, to howls of derision from the North Stand.

With just three minutes remaining, fellow full-back John Crumplin saved his team-mate’s blushes by sneaking in at the far post to head Dean Wilkins’s arrow-like corner into the top corner to make it 2-2.

A few weeks later Leeds celebrated promotion back to the First Division by smashing up Bournemouth.

I’m sure they’d happily swap places with the Cherries now!

Dan Tester is Albion editor of Brighton and Hove Independent. You can also follow him: @DJDanteBrighton