This week’s trawl down memory lane sees Norwich City’s most famous hour, Wayne Rooney’s arrival on the scene, a host of Manchester United and Arsenal clashes and a family affair at the Dell.
Norwich City had the most famous result in their history today in 1993 when they beat Bayern Munich in the German giants’ backyard. The Canaries visited the Olympic Stadium in Munich for a Uefa Cup second round contest and thanks to goals from Jeremy Goss and Mark Bowen won 2-1, becoming the only British side to ever win at their famous old stadium. A 1-1 draw at Carrow Road saw the City progress. Today in 2002 a 16-year-old Wayne Rooney scored his first Premier League goal, a 25-yard beaut that gave Everton a 2-1 win over Arsenal. ‘Remember the name: Wayne Rooney,’ exclaimed an over-excited Clive Tyldesley. We have Clive, we have.
The various Kevin Keegan eras at Newcastle brought their fair amount of ups and downs, but perhaps the zenith was the Toon’s 5-0 thrashing of Manchester United at St James’ today in 1996. After Keegan’s ‘I would love it’ rant the season before and subsequent bottling of a 12-point lead this was a tasty slice of revenge. “Undoubtedly the most enjoyable day I have had as a manager”, he said after the game. His only complaint that night was that “the league won’t give us more than three points for it.” There was another bad day for United in 1990 as they took on Arsenal in a fiery contest that resulted in a 21-man brawl at Old Trafford. Both clubs were fined £50,000 and Arsenal deducted two points and United one.
Brian Robson took his spending as Middlesbrough manager past the £80m mark today in 2000 when he snapped up Ugo Ehiogu for a club record £8m. And for all that money what did chairman Steve Gibson have to show for it? Not a great deal. Robson was soon found out as being a pretty terrible manager and he amusingly rocked up Thailand last week as their new national boss. Staying in the north east, Newcastle chairman ‘Fat’ Freddie Shepherd was playing the villain today in 2000 as he refused the FA permission to talk to Bobby Robson over a return to the England job as caretaker following Kevin Keegan’s resignation the week before.
One of the 20th century’s greatest-ever ‘keepers was born today in 1929. Lev Yashin was nicknamed ‘the Black Spider’, after his penchant for wearing an all-black kit and seemingly having eight legs to keep the ball out with. His statistics of 270 clean sheets in 812 games playing for the USSR and Dynamo Moscow only tell half the story, as he redefined the role of the goalkeeper. There was an usual hat-trick for Southampton today in 1988 when their starting line-up featured all Wallace brothers; Danny, Ray and Rod. Team Wallace helped Saints to a 1-1 draw with Sheffield Wednesday at the Dell.
Arsenal’s new Nigerian striker Kanu was making the headlines today in 1999 when his hat-trick in the last 15 minutes gave the Gunners a dramatic 3-2 comeback win over Chelsea. His third goal was a thing of beauty, as he slotted home from an almost impossibly acute angle after Chelsea ‘keeper Ed De Goey had gone walkabout. The FA celebrated their 100th birthday today in 1963 when Sir Alf Ramsey’s England side took on World XI, winning 2-1 thanks to a Jimmy Greaves winner. Most of the plaudits, however, went to the afore-mentioned Lev Yahsin who pulled off all kinds of world-class saves at Wembley that night.
When your team’s nickname is simply ‘The Club’, you’ve got to have a bit of history to back it up. And history is one thing that Sheffield FC have more of than anyone else, as they are the world’s oldest club, established today in 1857. There was a slightly more modern affair at Old Trafford today in 2004, when Arsenal and Manchester United got involved in another bad-tempered clash. This time, the headline maker was the humble pizza, as the two rivals got involved in a food fight. Arsenal were a little narked as United had ended their 49-game unbeaten streak and tempers boiled over into the tunnel. Ashley Cole summed the incident up in his autobiography, saying: “This slice of pizza came flying over my head and hit Fergie straight in the mush… all mouths gawped to see this pizza slip off this famous, puce face and roll down his nice black suit.”
Martin Jol suffered one of the most ignominious sackings today in 2007 when Daniel Levy gave him the boot from White Hart Lane. After a lacklustre start to the season Spurs were taking on Getafe in the Uefa Cup and just after the half-time interval rumours began to circulate across the ground that Jol had been sacked before the game. Spurs fans showed their support for Jol in the second half, but his P45 was waiting for him after the game. Finally this week, it’s over to an unlikely opponent of the beautiful game: Cilla Black. Today in 2000 ITV announced that they were moving their Premier League highlights show from it’s primetime spot and reinstating Cill’a Blind Date. Light Entertainment 1, Football 0.