Undrafted – The Network

An Interview With… Mark Bright

The term legend gets passed around too easily these days. However today’s guest is exactly that. Over 500 appearances and over 200 goals in the English football leagues, Mark Bright is a true legend of the game.

After starting his career in the lower league’s of English football, Bright got his first major move from Port Vale to top flight Leicester City. Bright also had spells at Sheffield Wednesday, Millwall and Charlton, however the club that he’s most remembered at, is Crystal Palace.

Bright and Wright formed a formidable partnership for Steve Coppell and Crystal Palace. Credit; CPFC.co.uk

The outstanding partnership and ‘Bright and Wright’, with former Palace and Arsenal legend Ian Wright. The pair instantly clicked and helped the club secure promotion to the First Division. Bright scored a massive 114 goals in 286 games for Crystal Palace, before his £1,375,000 move to Sheffield Wednesday.

Once again, thank you to Mark for giving me his time to ask him a few questions about an extraordinary career.

Have you ever been starstruck when meeting, or facing another professional? If so who?

Not really. I came from non league, so I was in a hurry to prove myself. I was shocked when Bobby Moore addressed me by my name when I was at Leicester City, and Sir Geoff Hurst owned a pub in Stoke On Trent where he showed me his World Cup winners medal when I was young. I met Sir Stan Matthews once he was really nice. The one time I felt slightly star struck was when I interviewed Michael Jordan in Brixton for the BBC, proper ledge.

Did you have any superstitions before playing a match? If so what were they?

If I scored I would wear the same boxer shorts or shirt and tie etc the next week. I think you soon get rid of those though when you stop scoring or winning.

One that really fascinates me! The most talented player you have ever exchanged shirts with? And how do you go about asking?

Swapping shirts was never really my thing. I had one of those attitudes that made me think I was one of the best players on the pitch! I swapped one with Wrighty when he was at West Ham, and at the end of the season I swapped one with my strike partner at Sheff We’d David Hirst because he asked on the last day of the season.

What do players actually speak about when they cover their mouths? Is it really that secretive?

We never did it, TV companies employ lip readers now to try and see what the players say. I once saw the Barca players in the dug out take the mickey out of Rafa Benitez because he had a waistcoat on and they called him a waiter, the tv camera saw them and obviously they learnt a lesson from that game.

And finally, in your opinion, the best footballer EVER? And why?

Maradona, because he was my era as a player, his spirit, ability, desire, balance and genius was the likes of what I’d never seen before, those titles for Napoli were incredible, seeing him lift the World Cup sealed it, footballing God for me. The best there was and ever will be, even Messi said so, he’s 2nd for me!

Once again a huge thank you to Mark for allowing me his time to do this!

As always, links to Mark’s social media accounts will be below, also check out his autobiography My Story – from foster care to footballer’

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