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Kuipers hoping fans make it special
Michel Kuipers admits his testimonial match will be an emotional night.
And the hugely popular Dutchman hopes as many Albion fans as possible will be there to share the special moment with him.
The Seagulls take on Reading at The Amex on Tuesday August 7 to acknowledge the ten years’ service Kuipers gave to the club as a player.
After joining from Bristol Rovers in 2000, Kuipers went on to make 287 appearances for Albion and helped them win three promotions. He was recently voted the most successful foreign player in the history of the club.
Although he is now playing for Crawley Town, Kuipers still works for the Seagulls’ Albion In the Community scheme.
Tickets for the game are priced at £15 adults, £12 senior citizens and £6 under-16s and Kuipers, who will play part of the game for Albion, is hoping for a big crowd.
He said: “I’m really pleased with how the testimonial event is shaping up.
“We have already had loads of positive feedback from Brighton supporters who are looking forward to coming to this special game.
“I will be playing with the 2012-13 Albion team. It will the final few steps in a 12-year journey that I began when I signed for Brighton all those years ago.
“I hope that as many fans as possible who walked this journey with me will be there to match me take those final steps.
“I will be very emotional. For most of my adult life I have been representing Albion either on the pitch as a player or off the pitch through Albion In The Community.
“It will be an emotional night and a night I am thoroughly looking forward to. I hope the supporters there will remember it for years to come in the same way they talk about the great things I have been part of in my ten years as an Albion player.”
The match will be sponsored by Haywards Heath firm 1st Central and Kuipers believes the game should be a cracker.
Reading were promoted back to the Premier League last season and Albion would love to join them after a successful first season at The Amex.
Kuipers added: “It will be a very competitive game. Although it is a testimonial, it won’t be veterans doing keepy-up for 90 minutes.
“You will see two teams preparing hard for the season of the season which, for Albion, will be exactly a week away come the game.
“It should be a good game between a very good passing Championship team and a Premier League team who have signed a number of big names.”
The game is also been promoted through the Sussex County Football Association who are inviting clubs across the county to buy tickets.
There are offers in place for clubs that do, including one free ticket for every ten sold as well as a special prize for the club that sells the most of a signed Albion shirt and Kuipers taking a coaching session or presenting the end season awards for that club.
Tickets for the game are available on the ticketline 0844 327 1901 or online at www.seagulls.co.uk