Football On This Day – 8th April 1944
In its heyday the Park Avenue sporting complex in Bradford hosted cricket,
rugby union and rugby league as well as football. The Bradford football
club had its home there but was better known as Bradford (Park Avenue) to
avoid confusion with rivals Bradford City. Bradford PA were members of the
Football League from 1908 to 1970 and were famously members of the
Southern League (yes the Southern League!) before joining the Football
League. Their Park Avenue ground was also famously had the 'Doll's House'
in one of its corners (pictured) which was similar to The Cottage at
Fulham's Craven Cottage home. Less well known though is that Bradford PA
were the only League side to have their record attendance recorded in a
war-time fixture. You wouldn't have thought large attendances would have
been allowed in the war years but on Saturday 8th April 1944 32,810
crammed into their Park Avenue ground for a war cup-tie against Blackpool.
The great attraction - Stanley Matthews was playing for the opposition.
Football On This Day – 8th April 1988
After having made two substitute appearances in the League for Southampton
Alan Shearer made his starting debut for the Saints against Arsenal at the
Dell and at 17 years 240 days of age became the youngest player to score a
hat-trick in the top flight. Southampton won 4-2.
On This Day - 9th April 1928
goalkeeper Jesse Whatley played his first match for Bristol Rovers, who
were then in the Southern League,
he didn’t make the most memorable of debuts – he let in five
goals. Rovers then progressed to the Football League and Jesse Whatley
progressed to setting an amazing playing record. He played all his League
football for Bristol Rovers and from August 1922 he played in 246
consecutive Football League matches for the Pirates. Those 246 matches
comprised playing in every League match for 5 full seasons and the first
36 matches of the following season which at the time was a League best and
still remains a Rovers record. The last match in that amazing sequence was
on 9th April 1928 against Crystal Palace at Eastville and then he asked to
be left out of the team for the rest of the season to allow deputy Bert
Densley a run in the side. Amazing!
On This Day – 9th April 1997
Coventry's shirt sponsors, got their monies worth when a colour-clash of
kit saw Chelsea needing to borrow Coventry's away strip in the Coventry v
Chelsea Premier League match at Highfield Road.
Football On This Day – 10th April 1965
Norbert Stiles - probably
better known as Nobby Stiles! - was a very popular character and player
and of course he was a member of the 1966 England World Cup winning side.
He played 28 times for England, all while a Manchester United player,
making his debut in the 2-2 draw against Scotland at Wembley on Saturday
April 10th 1965. Norbert - sorry Nobby - was famously very short-sighted
and often described himself as half-blind. After that debut match he and
the other England players went to the Café
Royal in London for the
traditional after-match banquet. Not wearing his glasses he got lost in
the corridors there before finding a busy dining room and sitting down in
it. He started to wonder were his team-mates were and then a fellow diner
lent over and asked him a question - "So, do you know the bride or
the groom?" Whoops!
Football On This Day – 10th April 1970
staged the first FA Cup 3rd/4th place match which replaced the FA Cup Final
eve England v Young England fixture. Manchester United beat Watford 2-0 in
front of 15,105 - the fixture only lasted 5 games!
Link - England v Young
England/FA Cup 3rd/4th place
Football On This Day – 10th April 1999
owner Mohamed Al-Fayed welcomed a special guest for the Division 2 match
against Wigan – singer Michael Jackson. That was his only visit to Craven
Cottage but 12 years later Fulham marked that visit with a statue of their
Football On This Day – 11th April 1936
Swansea Town weren't too chuffed
with the Easter fixture list in the 1935/36 season. On Good Friday - April
10th - they were on the south coast for a Second Division fixture against
Plymouth Argyle, which they won 2-1. The following day their Easter
Saturday fixture was away again - this time up north at Newcastle United!
They lost that one 0-2.
Football On This Day – 11th April 1937
France were due to play Italy in 1937 but when the Italians pulled out of
the fixture the opposition that replaced them was perhaps an unusual
choice.....Charlton Athletic! So on April 11th 1937 - the day after the
Londoners had defeated Huddersfield Town 1-0 at the Valley in the First
Division - Charlton were in Paris to take on France. And amazingly
Charlton won 5-2 with goals from Don Welsh (2), George Tadman (2) and
Football On This Day – 11th April 1959
Billy Wright of Wolves became
the first England player – in fact the first player in the world – to
make his 100th international appearance in England’s 1-0 victory over
Scotland at Wembley. He eventually won 105 caps, captaining England 90
Football On This
Day – 11th April 2015
Cambridge United chairman Dave Doggett identified a new threat in his
programme notes for the League 2 clash with Accrington Stanley – senior
citizen violence! He said that his club had identified a number of fans in
their 50s and 60s who were trying to relive the 1980s by fighting with
rival fans on match days. He wrote ‘Many of them are grandparents
trying to encourage the next generation to join their gangs. It sounds
pathetic but unfortunately it is reality. We are working closely with
Football On This
Day – 11th April 2017
The Champions League quarter-final first leg between Borussia Dortmund and
Monaco was postponed when the bus carrying the Borussia players and
officials to the Westfalenstadion was attacked by three roadside bombs.
One of their players, Marc Bartra, and a policeman were injured but
thankfully the strengthened windows of the bus prevented multiple
casualties. Islamic terrorism was initially suspected but then a financial
motive was discovered with the bomber planning to make a profit if the
attack caused the club share price to drop dramatically. The match was
played the following evening, Monaco winning 3-2.
Football On This Day – 12th April 1924
In the first ever international match at Wembley England drew 1-1 with
Scotland in front of a disappointingly low crowd of 37,250.
Football On This Day – 12th April 1987
Hillsborough hosted the FA Cup semi-final between Coventry City and Leeds
United. For Coventry it was the first time they had reached the last 4 of
the FA Cup while in the Leeds camp defender Neil Aspin was forced to
postpone his wedding which had been arranged for that day. Leeds didn't
have a match on that Sunday when the wedding date had been set! Well
Coventry won the match - and went on to defeat Spurs in the final - and Aspin got married a couple of weeks later. I guess he was forced to do
the washing-up for weeks as his penance!
- FA Cup results 1986/87
Football On This Day – 13th April 1936
Luton Town defeated Bristol Rovers 12-0 in a Division 3 (South) match. In
his first match as a centre-forward Joe Payne scored 10 of the goals which
is still the most goals any player has scored in a League match.
Link - Goals
and their goalscorers
Football On This Day – 13th April 1996
Fergie came out with
some great excuses for poor Manchester United displays with one of the
most bizarre coming at half-time in the Premier League match against
Southampton at the Dell on April 13th 1996. He blamed the 3-0 deficit at
the break on the grey kit United were wearing saying that his players
couldn't pick each other out against the background of the crowd. He
ordered them to change into a blue strip for the second half and to be
fair United scored the only goal in the second period. Mind you United
wore blue when they visited the Dell the following season - and lost 3-6!
Football On This Day – 13th April 1997
say that when it comes to the FA Cup fans of the clubs from lower leagues
don't dream of reaching the Wembley final - too unrealistic - but do dream
of being drawn away to a top side and visiting one of the iconic grounds
like Old Trafford or Anfield. But for fans of a third tier club 13th April
1997 saw them play at one of those iconic grounds with the dream of a
Wembley final almost coming true. Chesterfield reached the semi-final of
the FA Cup and were up against Middlesbrough at Old Trafford. The match
was a classic. Middlesbrough had a player sent off in a goalless first
half. Chesterfield took a 2-0 second half lead before Middlesbrough pulled
one back. Then a major controversy, A Chesterfield shot hit the underside
of the crossbar and appeared to cross the line - but it was disallowed.
Instead of being 3-1 down Middlesbrough made it 2-2 with a penalty and
took a 3-2 lead in injury time. Chesterfield then scored in the last
minute to draw 3-3. Sadly though Chesterfield were well beaten - 3-0 - in
the replay at Hillsborough and that particular dream was over.
- Chesterfield results 1996/97
Football On This Day – 14th April 1984
Some 20,000 fans of Third Division Plymouth Argyle travelled to Villa Park
for the clubs’ first – and still only – appearance in an FA Cup
semi-final. They lost 1-0 to Watford who reached their first FA Cup Final.
Link - FA Cup results 1983/84
Football On This Day –
England thumped Scotland 9-3 at Wembley. Jimmy Greaves scored a hat-trick
and Scotland ‘keeper Frank Haffey had a nightmare.
This Day - April 15th 1964
Best and Pat Jennings made their senior international debuts for Northern
Ireland on this day in 1964 in a 3-2 victory over Wales in the British
Home Championship match at the Vetch Field in Swansea. Jennings went on to
make a record 119 appearances for his country but Best sadly not making
enough with just 37 caps to his name.
Football On This Day – 15th April 1970
The record attendance for a European club competition match was set at
Hampden Park when 136,505 saw Celtic beat Leeds to reach the European Cup
Final. Celtic lost to Feyenoord in the final. Surely that's a record that
will never be broken?
Football On This Day -
15th April 1989
At 3.06pm the FA Cup semi-final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest at
Sheffield Wednesday’s Hillsborough ground was brought to a halt when it became apparent that overcrowding at the Leppings Lane End
was causing serious injuries to Liverpool supporters in the standing
terraces. The death of 97 fans was the worst disaster in English football
history and things would never be the same again. Was it really that long ago - and isn't it a national disgrace that the
full truth of what happened on that tragic day is
still not known!
Football On This Day – 16th April 1975
Malcolm Macdonald scored all of England’s goals in the 5-0 defeat of Cyprus
in a Euro qualifier at Wembley.
Football On This Day - 16th April
Oxford United owner Robert Maxwell announced that he had bought a controlling interest in Reading
FC and that he intended to merge the clubs and play under the
name of Thames Valley Royals.
On This Day - 16th April 1994
Duncan Ferguson of Rangers became the first professional player in Britain
to be jailed for a incident on the football pitch. In a Scottish League
match at Ibrox on 16th April 1994 he head-butted visiting Raith Rovers
defender Jock McStay and although the clash wasn't noticed by the match
officials it was caught on camera and he ended up in court charged with
assault. He was found guilty and with previous convictions (although not
from footballing incidents) he was sentenced to 3 months in prison. He
eventually served 44 days in Barlinnie prison after which he became an
Everton player (although I don't think that was part of the punishment!).
Link - Crime and Punishment
Football On This Day - 16th April 2001
Tragic scenes at Southend United's Roots Hall ground at their Division 3
match against Mansfield Town. Referee Mike North collapsed in the centre
circle shortly before half time and died of a heart attack. The match was
Football On This Day – 17th April 1937
A European record attendance for a football match of 149,415 saw
Scotland beat England 3-1 at Hampden Park in a Home Championship match.
Football On This Day – 17th April 1971
Hooliganism was an ever-present problem in the 70s with one particularly
bad incident at Elland Road in April 1971. Leeds were involved in a tight
battle with Arsenal for the League title and in a crucial match against
WBA referee Ray Tinkler allowed a clearly off-side goal. The ref was
jostled during a pitch invasion which followed. Leeds lost the match 1-2
and were pipped by a point by Arsenal for the title. Their punishment for
the incident was a four-match banishment from Elland Road at the start of
the 1971/72 season.
Football On This Day – 17th April 2006
Alan Shearer was one of the greats of the English game. His 206
Newcastle United goals and 260 Premier League goals were both records, he
was a Footballer of the Year, PFA Player of the Year, one of his transfers
was for a world record fee, he was a Premier League title winner and scored
30 times in 63 England appearances. He had planned to retire at the end of
the 2005/06 season, his tenth at hometown club Newcastle United. But
on Monday 17th April 2006 his playing career came to a slightly premature
end when a knee injury saw him substituted in what proved to be his last
match with three matches of the season remaining. Mind you it was a fitting
finale with Newcastle winning 4-1 away to their local rivals Sunderland. Of
course Alan Shearer scored one of those goals. A great player.
Football On This Day –
18th April 1903
Derby County 6-0 in the FA Cup Final played at Crystal Palace. It's still a
record high score in the final although was equalled when Manchester City
beat Watford by the same scoreline in the 2019 Wembley final.
Link - FA Cup results 1902/03
Football On This Day –
18th April 1993
Some players seem to be in
the news all the time while others can only dream of hitting the headlines
even once in their career. Steve Morrow was a player in the second
category. He spent nearly 10 years at Arsenal during which time he made 85
first team appearances for them, many as a sub, scoring 3 goals. He
played for his country - Northern Ireland - before making his Arsenal
debut! But Monday April 18th 1993 was the day he definitely made the
footballing headlines. With John Jensen injured Steve Morrow was selected
for the Arsenal team against Sheffield Wednesday at Wembley in the
Coca-Cola (League Cup) final - and he scored the winning goal which was
his first for Gunners. But there was more for the headline writers. After the final whistle Arsenal captain Tony
Adams tried to lift Morrow on to his shoulders in celebration of his part
in the victory - but dropped him! While his team-mates were collecting
their winners' medals the unfortunate Morrow was on his way to hospital
with a broken arm. He did get a Wembley presentation of his medals though,
in May before Arsenal's FA Cup final against - ironically - Sheffield
Wednesday which they won after a replay.
Link - Footballing Injuries
Football On This Day – 19th April 1958
Just two months after the Munich air disaster Manchester United’s Bobby
Charlton made his England debut in the 4-0 defeat of Scotland at Hampden
Park scoring the first of what would become a record 49 goals for his
On This Day – 19th April 2014
For the first time Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho
suffered a Premier League defeat at Stamford Bridge. After 61 wins and 16
draws in his first 77 league matches at the ground in his two spells at
the club along came bottom club Sunderland to win 2-1 against title
chasing Chelsea. In his after-match interview he praised his players, he
praised Sunderland and then had this to say about the referee who had
turned down several Chelsea penalty appeals but awarded one to
Sunderland. "Third point, I want to congratulate again Mike Dean. I
think his performance was unbelievable and I think when referees have
unbelievable performances I think it's fair that as managers we give them
praise. So, fantastic performance. He came here with one objective. To
make a fantastic performance. And he did that.” Yes he was being
sarcastic and yes he was fined, £10,000.
On This Day – 19th April 2016
When the PA announcer at the Rochdale v
Gillingham League 1 match made an appeal for a car owner to return to his
vehicle because the car lights had been left on the owner was a bit
preoccupied. He was playing in the match! Rochdale's Callum Camp got one
of the backroom staff to sort out his problem - then went on to score
Rochdale's goal in the 1-1 draw.
Football On This Day – 20th April 1901
A then world-record crowd for a football match at the Crystal Palace for the FA
Cup final between Sheffield United and Tottenham Hotspur. The official
attendance was 110.802 although thousands more gained entrance to witness
a 2-2 draw. The replay, played a week later at Bolton's Burnden Park, saw
Southern League Spurs become the only non-league side to win the FA Cup
since the Football League was founded in 1888 with a 3-1 victory.
Football On This Day – 20th April 1955
Wales became the first British international side to field two sets of
brothers. John and Mel Charles, Ivor and Len Allchurch were in their side
for the 3-2 victory over Northern Ireland at Windsor Park, Belfast. John
Charles scored a hat-trick.
Football On This Day – 20th April 1986
Robert Maxwell perhaps wasn't the most popular of club chairman but under
his control Oxford United did enjoy its most successful period. As a First
Division club - the top tier in those days - on this day in 1986 Oxford
beat favourites QPR in front of 90,396 at Wembley to win the Milk Cup
(League Cup). Twenty years later they were relegated to the Conference.
Football On This Day
21st April 1909
Forest beat Leicester Fosse (now Leicester City) in what was expected to
be a keenly-fought First Division relegation battle the scoreline raised a
few eyebrows - Forest won 12-0. An inquiry was held where it was found that the reason for Fosse's
poor performance was that two days before the match the Leicester players
had attended the wedding of team-mate Turner - and that the celebrations
had continued until the early hours of the morning of the match against
Link - the full story
Football On This Day
21st April 1930
Leicester City and
Arsenal drew 6-6 at Filbert Street in a First Division fixture. That was
the first time that scoreline had been recorded in the Football League
and has been repeated just once since - Charlton v Middlesbrough in a
Second Division match in 1960/61.
Football On This Day
21st April 1930
Brentford beat QPR
3-0 at Griffin Park and so won all their 21 home fixtures in Division 3
(South) that season. That was the last time a club won all their home
matches in a League season and although five clubs had achieved that
record previously the most home matches any of those club had played was
17. Amazingly though Brentford weren't promoted!
Link - Brentford results 1929/30 and League table
Football On This Day
21st April 1979
winner Alan Ball completed 100 League appearances for Southampton. He was the first player
to achieve this with four different clubs – the others being Blackpool,
Everton and Arsenal.
Football On This Day
21st April 1986
One of the more
unusual hat-tricks was scored by Alvin Martin in West Ham's 8-1 First
Division victory over Newcastle United at Upton Park. Injuries saw
Newcastle play three different goalkeepers - Martin Thomas, Chris Hedworth
and Peter Beardsley - and Alvin Martin completed his hat-trick by scoring
a goal against each of them.
Link - match details and West
Ham results 1985/86
Football On This Day
21st April 1990
Ian Bowyer and his son Gary were in the Hereford team for their Division 4
match at Scunthorpe. In was the first time a father and son had player
together in the League since 1951. Gary scored his first ever League goal
in the 3-3 draw while former European Cup winner Ian turned out in just
one more League match before retiring from playing.
Football On This Day
21st April 2013
When Liverpool's Luis Suárez bit Branislav
Ivanović's arm in the Liverpool v Chelsea Premier League match at
Anfield the comedians on the internet had a field-day. On a more serious
note the Uruguayan - who had previous for the same offence while at Ajax -
suffered an undisclosed club fine and a 10 game FA ban for violent
conduct. And we all wondered when 'Cannibal' Suárez would strike next!
Football On This Day
21st April 2017
David Stockdale made history by becoming the first keeper to score two own
goals in a League match. All the other 39 double own goal scorers in
League history had been outfield players. Amazingly the own goals were
almost identical – shots from Norwich’s Alex Pritchard hit the Brighton
woodwork, they rebounded and hit the back of the unfortunate Stockdale
before bouncing back into the net. A 2-0 defeat for Brighton who picked up
just one point from their last 3 matches of the 2016/17 Championship
season and were pipped by Newcastle for the title by just one point.
Link - Own goals
Football On This Day – 22nd April 1959
Crystal Palace goalkeeper Vic Rouse became the first player from the
Fourth Division to win a full international cap. He played for Wales
against Northern Ireland in Belfast. The Irish won 4-1 - it was the only
cap he won!
Football On This Day – 22nd April 1964
I was going to start this with do you remember Eric Morecambe's mimicking
the announcer of the classified results - then I thought perhaps not many
of you would even remember Eric Morecambe! Anyway Eric, of Morecambe &
Wise comedy fame, made us all laugh when giving the result -
"East Fife (downward inflection) 4 -
Forfar (upward lilt) 5"
Well it made us laugh at the time! But that result has
never been read in reality but on 22nd April 1964 it came close with
Forfar 5 East Fife 4. No, not quite the same.
Football On This Day – 22nd April 1998
Brother substituted brother for the first time for England when Phil
Neville replaced his brother Gary in the second half of England’s 3-0
victory over Portugal at Wembley.
Football On This Day – 23rd April 1948
On the eve of playing in the 1948 FA Cup final Blackpool's Stanley
Matthews was named as the first winner of Football Writers' Association
'Footballer of the Year' award. The final didn't bring more success for
him with Manchester United beating Blackpool 4-2 in a classic Wembley
final and Matthews had to wait another five years for that elusive
Football On This Day – 23rd April 1984
A 0-0 draw at Grimsby was
Cambridge United's 31st League match on the trot without a win.
They beat Newcastle in their next Division 2 match but those 31 matches
without a victory set a record that lasted until Derby suffered 36 winless matches in a row in
Link - Cambridge United results 1983/84.
Football On This Day – 24th April 1929
Halifax Town's Bob Suter made his last appearance in the Football
League - a 2-0 Division 3 (North) defeat at Darlington - just three months
short of his 51st birthday. An injury to regular Halifax Town keeper Howard
Matthews - a sprightly 43 year old - saw trainer Bob Suter forced out of a
7-year retirement to become the second oldest player to appear in the
Football On This Day – 24th April 1988
Luton Town beat the strong favourites and cup holders Arsenal to win the
Littlewoods (League) Cup in front of 95,732 at Wembley. It was decided in
the final 10 minutes when Luton saved a penalty and then scored an
equaliser and a winner. It was the first major piece of silverware the
Hatters had won – and then they broke the trophy during their
- Littlewoods Cup (League Cup) results 1987/88
Football On This Day – 24th April 1996
Iceland's Eiður Guðjohnsen was probably best known in the English game
for the goalscoring partnership he formed with Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink at
Chelsea but he also made League appearances for Bolton, Spurs, Stoke and
Fulham. His debut for Iceland came on April 24th 1996 in a friendly
against Estonia in Tallinn and it certainly made the footballing headlines
- he came on as substitute for his dad! He and dad Arnór Guðjohnsen were
both in the squad for the Estonia match - Arnór played in the first half
with Eiður replacing him as sub in the second half. It was definitely a
newsworthy footballing first! Iceland's next match was a home fixture and
the plan was that father and son would play alongside each other on home
soil in that game but sadly before that could happen Eiður broke his leg
and he didn't regain fitness until after his dad had retired - much to the
great disappointment of both players.
Football On This Day – 24th April 1999
Who said that opposing fans can't help each other out? Going into their
Premier Division match against Arsenal at the Riverside Middlesbrough were
on a high. Only one home League defeat in 36 matches, a 7-match unbeaten
League run and only one League goal conceded at the Riverside in 1999. By
the time Arsenal had taken a 6-0 lead hordes of home fans had shown their
displeasure by heading home early. But in the 87th minute Middlesbrough
scored a consolation goal with Alun Armstrong heading home from an Andy
Townsend free-kick. The trouble was there were hardly any Middlesbrough
fans left in the ground to celebrate the goal. Sensing the problem the
away fans cheered the Middlesbrough goal as if it was one of their own.
Thoughtful or what!
Football On This Day – 25th April 1953
Jack Charlton made his League debut against Doncaster Rovers at
Elland Road in Leeds' last Division 2 match of the 1952/53 season - the
first of what would be a club record 629 League appearances for the
Yorkshire club. As he left the dressing room he asked manager Raich Carter
what he should be doing in the match and received the reply 'See how fast their centre forward can limp.'
Link - debuts
Football On This Day – 25th April 1986
Bobby Moore resigned as manager of Southend - the only League club
he managed - for personal reasons. His two years at Roots Hall had been
tough ones but despite financial problems he had helped turn Southend from
Division 4 strugglers to a club who finished 9th in 1985/86 and who would
win promotion the following season.
Football On This Day – 25th April 2007
Alan Ball, the youngest member of England’s 1966 World Cup winners,
tragically died of a heart attack while putting out a bonfire in the
garden of his home.
Football On This Day – 25th April 2009
Losing 2-0 at home to Spurs at the break Manchester United brought
on Carlos Tevez as a second half sub. Along with Rooney, Ronaldo and
Berbatov - some strikeforce that - United won 5-2 and went on to retain
the Premier League title that season.
- Manchester United results by season
Football On This Day – 25th April 2015
They say that
politicians should keep clear of animals and children - perhaps football
should be added to that list. In a speech in the run-up to the 2015
general election Prime Minister David Cameron said he wished everyone
would support West Ham. An ex-Eton boy supporting the Hammers, now that
would have been a first - but then the PM remembered he supported Aston
Villa! He blamed 'brain fade' for the mistake but most people thought it
was just more bullshit! Then came Boris!
Football On This Day – 25th April 2015
There was very
much a 'Division 5' look about the non-league Conference going into the
last day of the League season. Recent ex-League sides Barnet and Bristol
Rovers were both in with a chance of the title and with it a place back in
the Football League. Bristol Rovers beat Alfreton 7-0 at the Memorable
Ground in front of a new Conference record crowd of 11,085 but Barnet beat
Gateshead 2-0 to pip Rovers to the title and promotion. Three weeks later
though Bristol Rovers won back their League place beating Grimsby Town on
penalties in the play off final at Wembley - the 47,029 crowd setting a
new Conference play-off attendance record.
Football on This Day – 26th April 1902
Heavily in debt Second Division side Newton Heath are saved when
new investment came their way. As part of a fresh start they decided to
make a few changes - their colours were changed from gold and green to red
and white and their name became... Manchester United!
on This Day – 26th April 2003
Be honest, if you owned the club you supported you would be tempted
to get yourself picked for the team wouldn't you? Well that's exactly what
the Doncaster Rovers owner did in 2003. In the final League match of the
Conference season club owner John Ryan came on as a last minute sub in
Doncaster's 4-2 win at Hereford United. He said after the match 'I
didn't actually get a kick of the ball but I had a good run around'
but his one and only appearance for them did see him enter the record
books. He was just days short of his 53rd birthday at the time and became
the oldest player to make an appearance in an English professional league
beating the record set by Neil McBain in 1947.
on This Day – 26th April 2003
One of the more unusual reasons for abandoning a match.
had a 2-0 lead over Mansfield Town in a Second Division fixture at Prenton
Park in April 2003 when spectator Stephen Anglesey decided to have a
wander - and climbed one of the floodlight pylons. He couldn't be
persuaded down and jumped the gap between the floodlights and the roof of
the Cow Shed stand. Fearing for his safety and the safety of the
spectators the crowd of over 7,000 were asked to leave the ground at half
time and shortly afterwards the match was abandoned by referee Mike Ryan
with Anglesey still on the roof.
Link - abandoned matches
Football on This Day – 26th April 2016
After two years the second Hillsborough inquest finally gave its
verdict - the 96 fans who died as a result of the 1989 Hillsborough
disaster were unlawfully killed. The inquest jury concluded that the
tragedy was the result of failings by the police and ambulance services
with match commander, Chief Superintendent David Duckinfield, being
'responsible for manslaughter by gross negligence'. The jury also ruled
that Liverpool supporters - who police had originally blamed for the fatal
crush - did not cause or contribute to the tragedy. So the truth is
finally out - but isn't it a national disgrace that it took over 27 years
and needed inquiries and inquests that cost over £100 million to get to
Football on This Day – 26th April 2017
A bad day for football news. The offices of West Ham United and
Newcastle United were raided by HMRC officials investigating an income tax
and national insurance fraud. French tax authorities were also involved in
the investigation and Chelsea were implicated. Joey Barton was in trouble
again picking up an 18 month FA ban for placing 1260 bets on football
matches between 2006 and 2013 which included matches he was playing in.
There was also speculation that the Premier League would block a possible
£200million takeover of Southampton by a company owned by Chinese
businessman Gao Jisheng. There were doubts as to whether he would pass the
'fit and proper' standard that the Premier League sets for club owners.
The newspapers were full of it the following day with the prize probably
going to The Sun with the stories making the front page and
relegating Rhian and 'Her Best Bits' and Boris calling Jeremy Corbyn 'a
mutton-headed mugwump' to the inside pages!
Football On This Day – 27th April 1974
A back-heel from
Manchester City’s Denis Law resulted in one of the most famous goals in League
history – it was against his former club, Manchester United, which put United on the verge
of relegation. Law was immediately substituted and didn’t play League
football again and the match was later abandoned after fans invaded the
pitch although the result - his
goal was the only goal - was
allowed to stand and United were relegated.
Link - abandoned matches
Link - Manchester United results 1973/74
Football On This Day – 27th April 1985
In response to an FA warning following a pitch invasion at Stamford Bridge
in March 1985 controversial Chelsea chairman Ken Bates had a shocking
solution - a 12-foot high electrified fence around the pitch! It was due
to be switched on at the Chelsea v Tottenham First Division fixture on
Saturday 27th April 1985 but days before the match the Greater London
Council threatened legal action if the switch-on took place. So the big
question on match-day was would they or would they not switch on the
12-volts. They didn't - and never would.
Football On This Day – 28th April 1894
Saturday 28th April 1894 saw the first match played in a rivalry that has
proved to be one of the most intense seen in English football. At the
unlikely venue of Ewood Park in Blackburn the first competitive match was
played between Liverpool and Newton Heath - now Manchester United. And it
was an important one - Newton Heath had finished bottom of Division 1 and
Liverpool top of Division 2 in 1893/94 with promotion and relegation being
decided with test matches. Some 5,000 were present for the match at Ewood
Park with gate receipts totalling a mahoosive....£109. First half goals
from Patrick Gordon and Harry Bradshaw gave Liverpool the victory and so
saw them in their first Football League season promoted to the top flight
while Newton Heath were relegated. Liverpool only survived a season in
Division 1 which saw the two clubs meet in Football League action for the
first time in 1895/96. And both those Division 2 encounters went the way
of the home sides - Liverpool winning their home match 7-1 while Newton
Heath were 5-2 winners in Manchester.
Link - all the results and tables of Liverpool
Football On This Day – 28th April 1923
Bolton beat West Ham United 2-0 in the FA Cup Final. It was the first
match to be played at Wembley and the last FA Cup Final not to be
all-ticket. The official attendance was 126,047 but perhaps over 200,000 gained
access to the ground. The match, which kicked off 45 minutes late, became
known as the 'White Horse Final' in honour of the policeman on a white
horse who helped keep the crowds back behind the touchlines to allow the
match to be played.
- FA Cup results 1922/23
This Day – 28th April 1973
Bobby Charlton played in his 606th and last League match for Manchester
United – a 1-0 defeat against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge. His six League
goals that season was enough to see him finish as the top scorer for
United in 1972/73 when the club finished just above a relegation spot. On
the same day his older brother Jackie played his last League game, for
Leeds against Southampton at the Dell. Jackie's whole League career was at
Elland Road although Bobby went on to play for Preston after leaving Old
Football On This Day – 29th April 1912
Managers moan nowadays if their players have to play twice in a week but
West Bromwich Albion completed the 1911/12 season on 29th April 1912
having played seven matches in just 10 days. Amazingly two of those
matches were the FA Cup final and final replay and four of those matches
were played on four days in a row.
Link - WBA results 1911/12
Football On This Day – 29th April 1950
Bomb damage had seen Old Trafford
closed for the first three post-war seasons with Manchester United setting
up home at Manchester City's Maine Road ground. But they were finally back
at Old Trafford at the start of the 1949/50 season - although perhaps the
novelty soon seemed to wear off. The final First Division match of the
season - against Fulham on April 29th 1950 - saw what is still the lowest post-war League attendance at Old Trafford - just 11,968.
Link - Manchester United results 1949/50.
Football On This Day – 29th April 1961
A 15,318 London Road crowd saw
Peterborough United beat Barrow 6-2 in their final Division Four match of
the season. Not only did Posh top the division in their first Football
League season but those six goals saw the club complete the season with a
record 134 League goals. Terry Bly scored a hat-trick against Barrow to
finish the season with 52 League goals, a post-war League best.
Football On This Day – 29th April 1978
A most un-German end to the 1977/78
Bundesliga season. Going into the last match of the season Borussia
Mönchengladbach and Cologne were equal on points but Cologne's goal
difference was better by 10 goals. Cologne were odds-on favourites for the
title but amazingly Mönchengladbach beat Borussia Dortmund by a
record-breaking 12-0 scoreline. Cologne still took the title, they beat St
Pauli 5-0 to maintain a better goal difference (of 3 goals) but so
dramatic was Mönchengladbach's victory there was suspicion of
match-fixing. The final conclusion though was that Dortmund's players just
gave up on the match and each member of their team was fined for their
Football On This Day – 29th April 1991
David Icke was a half-decent goalkeeper playing 37 times for Hereford
United in their first League season, 1972/73. When arthritis then ended
his playing career cruelly early he became a half-decent BBC TV sports
presenter. Then he turned slightly 'strange' saying, amongst many other
things, that he was 'the son of God'. Appearing on the BBC
Wogan programme on 29th April 1991 he was ridiculed by Terry Wogan with
the studio audience - and I guess the wider television public - laughing
at his statements which included that Britain would be devastated by tidal
waves and earthquakes. The interview was on his 39th birthday which I
guess was his Christmas Day! Sad.
Football On This Day – 29th April 1992
Gary Lineker scored his 48th – and last – England goal in
Moscow against CIS (Russia). He played in a further 6 internationals
without scoring another goal - he missed a penalty in the 1-1 draw with
Brazil at Wembley - leaving his total one short of Bobby Charlton’s
Football On This Day – 30th April 1927
A tragedy at Bramall Lane. Bury full back Sam Wynne collapsed when about
to take a free shortly before the interval at the First Division match
between Sheffield United and Bury. He was stretchered off but died in the
dressing room, the cause of death being found to be pneumonia. The match was abandoned at half
time and when replayed the following Thursday (May 5th) the £680 gate
receipts from the 15,000 crowd was donated to Sam Wynne's family. In
October 1923 he had become the first player to score 2 goals for each side
in a League match when playing for Oldham against Manchester United at
Football On This Day – 30th April 1954
To give the northern hordes something to do the night before attending the
FA Cup Final the Football Association arranged the first of what would become a regular eve of
Cup Final fixture until 1969 - England v Young England.
Link - England v Young
Football On This Day – 30th April 1960
A 29,781 crowd at Deepdale saw Tom Finney play his last game for Preston
North End, a 2-0 First Division defeat of Luton Town. Every one of his 433
League appearances was for Preston although 3 years later - in September
1963 - he was coaxed out of retirement for a one-off appearance in Belfast
for Distillery in a European Cup match against Eusebio's Benfica.
Football On This
Day – 30th April 1977
Top grounds nowadays hardly have a blade of grass out of place but there
was a time when that was far from true. One of the worst puddings of a
pitch was at Derby County's former home, the Baseball Ground, were the
pitch was several feet below street level, the drainage was non-existent
and the stands stopped any drying winds. Even then Cloughie often ordered
that the pitch be watered before a match if a 'sticky' surface would give
the Rams an advantage. Things went very wrong though on this day in 1977
when Derby played Manchester City in a First Division match at the
Baseball Ground. With minutes remaining and Derby 3-0 up they were awarded
a penalty. But the pitch was in such a poor state that the penalty spot
had disappeared into the mud. Before the pen could be taken the groundsman,
Bob Smith, helped by the referee, had to measure out the distance from the
goal line and then paint the mud to mark the new penalty spot from which
Gerry Daly scored.
Football On This Day – 30th April 1982
Bristol City sacked Roy Hodgson from his first managerial job in England.
With six matches remaining they were doomed to relegation from Division 3
being 13 points from safety with just 6 matches left.
Football On This Day – 30th April 1988
Derby County goalkeeper Peter Shilton broke Terry Paine's Football League
appearance record when playing in his 825th League match in the 1-1 First
Division draw against Watford at Vicarage Road. He went on to increase the
record to 1005 League appearances.
Football On This Day – 30th April 1994
their final home match of the season Liverpool welcomed back onto the Anfield
pitch former players including Billy Liddell, Kenny Dalglish, Tommy Smith,
Ian Callaghan and Steve Heighway to mark a sad occasion….the last match in
front of a standing Kop. First used in 1906 in its heyday the Kop
accommodated around 30,000 standing supporters but capacity had been
reduced to around half that for the final match against Norwich City. The
Taylor report, which followed the Hillsborough disaster, brought an end to
standing terraces in the top divisions with all-seater stadiums being the
future. Norwich won 1-0.