Ex-Brighton star Adrian Thorne dies aged 84


Adrian Thorne gave Albion fans one of their biggest nights at the Goldstone.

But the man himself always believed he had more satisfying matches – against stars like Johnny Haynes and Billy Liddell.

The former Albion striker has died aged 84.

He is best remembered as the local hero who scored five goals in a 6-0 win over Watford that secured the Third Division South title in 1958 and took the club to the second division for the first time.

Due to an injury to Dave Sexton, he made only his seventh start in the Football League and had a hat-trick in ten minutes.

Footage shows crowded patios and neighboring front gardens cheering on Albion on a sunny evening.

Thorne, who was born in Hove, scored 44 goals in 84 games for Albion and led the scoring charts with 14 goals in 1960/61.

He moved to Plymouth for £8,000 and later had another promotion success with Exeter City.

He then transitioned into teaching, having started training in the later years of his playing career.

Thorne once told Argus reporter John Vinicombe he doesn’t remember too much of his great night against Watford.

He recalled one of those games where “I just happened to do everything that came my way.”

But he added: “The following season, against tougher opponents, I scored four goals against Bristol Rovers and that was a more satisfying performance.

“Even when we beat Fulham at the Goldstone this season, the opposition was again so much bigger than last season.

“For a young and inexperienced player like me it was very special to play against a side like Fulham who had England internationals like Johnny Haynes and George Cohen.

“Also I will never forget the thrill of playing against Liverpool who had Billy Liddell on their side and when we went to Preston in a cup replay they had Tom Finney.

“The players I mentioned were household names while Watford was a third tier club like us.” Ex-Brighton star Adrian Thorne dies aged 84

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