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Premier League: The curious case of the M23 derby

On Friday evening, Brighton take on Crystal Palace in a match which has a long, interesting history and there is certainly no love lost between either side.

Graham Potter's men are ninth in the table as they look to go five matches without defeat across all competitions, while Patrick Vieira's side are four points behind in 12th position.

The Seagulls can be backed at 1/1 to win Friday's game at the AMEX Stadium, with Palace priced at 3/1 to grab an away victory and the draw available at 23/10.

With 37 miles between the two sides, geography doesn't exactly point to a fierce local rivalry, but the two clubs have disliked each other for decades

Eagles v Seagulls - 1970s

Throughout the 50s and 60s, there was no real rivalry between the two clubs, confirmed by former Palace manager and boyhood fan Roy Hodgson - but the bad blood started in the mid-70s.

The two clubs met on the opening day of the 1974/75 season in the old Third Division (League One nowadays) and police had to deal with clashes between two sets of supporters as 33,000 descended on the old Goldstone Ground.

The following season, both clubs were vying for promotions from the third tier and Brighton's 1-0 victory at Palace was heavily criticised by Eagles boss Malcolm Allison who felt that Peter Taylor's side were too aggressive in their approach.

Back then, Brighton were nicknamed the Dolphins but the reason they became the Seagulls was down to the fans counter-chanting the Palace supporters singing Eagles about their side.

As the acrimony developed, so did the tensions between the two dugouts.

Both teams missed out on promotion and in 1976 appointed new managers - Alan Mullery took over at Brighton while Terry Venables was installed as palace boss.

The two were teammates at Tottenham with Mullery serving as skipper while Venables was vice-captain - a dynamic which meant they didn't get on, particularly as Venables was less revered by the Spurs faithful than Mullery.

Smoke bombs were deployed in the first meeting under the new managers with hostility now the norm between the two clubs.

In the space of three years, the two clubs were promoted together and played top-flight football in the 1979/80 season.

Continued unrest - 1980s

In 1982, Palace chairman Ron Noades controversially appointed Mullery as Palace manager and attendances dropped sharply as a result.

Mullery left after two years before one of the ugliest clashes between the two sides occurred in 1985 when Brighton's Gerry Ryan suffered a career-ending leg break after a challenge from defender Henry Hughton.

Then, there was an extraordinary clash in 1989 when referee Kevin Morton awarded five penalties in the space of 27 minutes with Palace getting four of them.

Incredibly, three were missed but they still went on to win the match 2-1.

Brighton revival - 1990s and beyond

Brighton's off-field decline meant the rivalry cooled as the two sides met only four times between 1990 and 2011.

However, a play-off semi-final clash renewed old rivalries with a Wilfried Zaha brace sending Palace through to the Wembley final in 2013 - a match they ultimately won after defeating Watford in the playoff final.

Brighton earned Premier League promotion in 2017 though Palace have enjoyed more success in head-to-head meetings since, winning three, drawing four and losing two.

Key personnel missing

Both teams will have to make do without key players for Friday's contest.

Yves Bissouma is missing for Brighton due to African Cup of Nations duty while Zaha, Cheikhou Kouyate and Jordan Ayew are missing for Place as they too are representing their countries.

Lewis Dunk could return for Brighton after a spell out with a knee injury while Enock Mwepu should return after a hamstring problem.

For the Eagles, Conor Gallagher is likely to be fit to return after a bout of illness while Michael Olise will be pushing for a start after his terrific goal against Millwall in the FA Cup.

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