Mark Abraham Bright was born on the 6th June 1962 in Stoke-on-Trent. The imposing striker played Youth football for his boyhood team Port Vale before being released aged 16. After three years playing non-league football with Leek Town he would return to Vale Park and eventually made his first team debut for the Valiants in 1982 aged 20.
Two years later he was on the move to First Division Leicester City where he teamed up in attack with Gary Lineker and Alan Smith. After two seasons at Filbert Street, Mark joined Steve Coppell’s Crystal Palace where he created a lucrative partnership with Ian Wright which helped the Eagles to promotion to the First Division and an FA Cup final in 1990 which they lost against Manchester United after a reply. However, he did enjoy Wembley success the following season when Palace returned to Wembley to win the Full Members Cup against Everton.
In 1992, Brighty moved to Sheffield Wednesday where he once again suffered Wembley final anguish after coming runners up to Arsenal in the 1993 League Cup and FA Cup finals. Before retirement the talented forward helped Charlton Athletic to promotion to the Premier League.
90 seconds, 11 Q&A with Mark Bright:-
1) Childhood team growing up? Port Vale, I lived close to the stadium and I dreamed I’d play there at some point.
2) First pair of football boots owned? An orange pair with a double black stripe, I’d love to say they were Puma, Nike or Adidas but they were no named boots.
3) Did you have a nickname in the dressing room and how did you get it? In football you just add a Y or an O on the end of someone’s name, so it was Brighty for me or Big Un.
4) Favourite teammate? My former Port Vale team mate Robbie Earle, he’s my oldest friend in football.
5) Toughest opponent? Far too many to mention, all the guys from my era like Bruce, Pallister, Adams, Keown, McGrath, Hansen, Ratcliffe etc.
6) Which player do you wish you’d had the chance to play with? Maradona, for me he’s the best of the best.
7) Favourite football shirt you’ve played in? The Crystal Palace one with Fly Virgin on the front from the 90s.
8) Best stadium for atmosphere? The Old Wembley Stadium.
9) Biggest influence on your career? Former Port Vale coach and manager John Rudge, he devoted hours in me.
10) Most prized possessions from your playing days? I only have one shirt left and three losers medals, I don’t have any football memorabilia on display in my house, it’s all part of my past.
11) What keeps you busy these days? I’m the loans manager at Crystal Palace FC, we have 14 players out on loan at the moment so that keeps me busy.
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