The Eagles, a short time after emerging from administration, had been put on the brink of a place in the Premier League promised land by a precociously talented 21-year-old who grew up a stone’s throw from the Holmesdale Road End.
Bill Leslie was behind the mic on that occasion, and remembers the tie fondly. To understand the significance of that 2-0 play-offs victory, Leslie takes us back to the first-leg: “Thinking back to the semi-finals, Brighton were the overwhelming favourites going into it, particularly after the goalless draw at Selhurst Park in the first leg. Everyone expected a fairly routine Brighton win.
“I think it was just a couple months earlier they played in the league and Brighton had won pretty comfortably. I seem to remember the lie of the land was that getting that goalless draw in the first-leg Brighton almost had a free pass.”