Keith Wyness:  I think everyone’s getting a bit carried away with Brighton

Surely someone with a connection to Everton wouldn’t have the temerity to throw shade at well-run model football club Brighton & Hove Albion, would they?

Yes, yes they would.

Step forward Keith Wyness, former CEO of the Merseyside club although, to be fair to him, Wyness had departed Everton before the absolute shambles experienced at Goodison Park over recent years.

Speaking on the Inside Track podcast, Wyness took aim at the Seagulls, with some strange claims:

“I think there’s a love-fest about Brighton being well-run. They are run by very bright and good people. But I don’t think there’s anything exceptional going on. There’s also a bit of luck involved, as we’ve seen with the Chelsea factor.

“They’ve got great new facilities and that has come from them not having much debt when they built the stadium and training ground.

“They have put good people in place and they have made good decisions, but I wouldn’t get carried away and say it’s a Harvard Business School study.

“Each club has a unique set of problems, with advantages and disadvantages. Brighton have had less disadvantages than others.

“They’ve done a great job, but to say it’s because they are so well-run – I think everyone’s getting a bit carried away.”

What’s particularly difficult to understand is how anyone could think Brighton had less disadvantages than, say, Everton. Whilst Wynnes was enjoying plush surroundings of the Goodison Park boardroom, then Albion chairman Dick Knight was less-disadvantaged with his Portakabin plonked alongside the club’s temporary Withdean home.

As Wynnes was watching Everton finish in the top six of the Premier League season after season, Brighton had the “advantage” of languishing in the bottom half of League One. Whilst Everton were competing in the Cup Final at Wembley and touring Europe in the UEFA Cup, down in Sussex we celebrated reaching the Third Round of the Cup – we’d had a glorious cup run!

The inconvenient truth for Wynnes is that Brighton has been proficiently run by Tony Bloom and right-hand man Paul Barber, surely the best club administrator in British football.

Luck has certainly played a part – it would be foolish to suggest otherwise – but, to a degree, you make your own luck. Under Bloom and Barber’s expert guidance, the club was positioned to be in the right place at the right time to first experience, and then benefit from, the good fortune encountered.

Ask the owners, staff and fans of any aspirational football club whether they would like to follow the Brighton model or the Everton model and, once they’ve stopped laughing, there won’t be too many opting for the spend-your-bollocks-off-and-get-multiple-points-deductions approach.

Related discussion: Keith Wyness (ex-Everton) seems to have a bit of beef with Albion…

Images courtesy of Reuters