Ten years ago tonight, Albion were in party mood at Withdean.

They secured promotion from League One with five games to spare as they beat Dagenham and Redbridge 4-3.

Gus Poyet’s side twice came from behind to clinch the victory which sparked a spontaneous pitch invasion at the end.

It turned into a wild night at the Theatre of Trees.

Relegation-headed Dagenham went ahead after just 21 seconds when John Akinde’s shot deflected in off Tommy Elphick to wrongfoot Casper Ankergren.

Adam El-Abd helped on an Elliott Bennett corner for Inigo Calderon to poke home his seventh goal of the season and equalise on 18 minutes.

Then the lively Craig Noone crossed for Glenn Murray to head home despite the attempts of a defender on the line to clear.

Dagenham scored twice in the first six minutes of the second half to go back in front, through Jon Nurse and a Danny Green penalty.

Again Albion responded and drew level with a stunning 20-yard strike from Liam Bridcutt.

Then, on 63 minutes, substitute Ashley Barnes rose unchallenged to head home another Bennett corner for 4-3.

Albion played sparkling football for most of the season to open a commanding lead over Southampton, who also went up.

Promotion had seemed just a matter of time after a stunning March which saw them play eight matches and win the lot.



While Albion were beating the Daggers, Southampton were losing 2-0 away to what was a decent Rochdale side.

That set things up nicely for Poyet’s men to secure the title the following Saturday at Walsall.

Poyet savoured his first success as a manager and said: “The feeling is totally different to when I was a player.

“Then you were part of a team, part of some- body else’s idea. This is me, what I believe, this is very personal.

“This is what Tano (assistant boss Mauricio Taricco) and myself were convinced was possible, so there is personal pride in there.”

ALBION (4-2-1-3): Ankergren; Calderon, Elphick, El-Abd, Painter; Bridcutt, Dicker (Kishishev, 85); Bennett; Murray, Wood (Barnes, 56), Noone (Sparrow, 65). Subs not used: Brezovan, Navarro, Sandaza, Dunk.