Friday, 21 September 2018

1987 Ryder Cup: Eamonn Darcy

Just like his fellow countryman Christy O’Connor Jr, the Ryder Cup had not been kind to Ireland’s Eamonn Darcy before his day in the sunshine. Making his debut in 1975, Darcy had also featured in the 1977 and 1981 contests, but held an unenviable record of played 9 halved 2 lost 7.

Wednesday, 12 September 2018

1986: Tottenham v Liverpool

Liverpool appeared unusually vulnerable as they made the visit to White Hart Lane on Sunday March 3, 1986. After losing 2-0 to Everton at Anfield the week before, Kenny Dalglish’s team were grimly trying to stay in the title race, trailing their Merseyside rivals by eight points with twelve matches remaining.

Monday, 3 September 2018

1986: Ron Atkinson leaves Manchester United

If a week is a long time in politics, then a year must have seemed like an eternity to Ron Atkinson as he contemplated his lot in November 1986. Just twelve months before Atkinson had looked destined to become the first Manchester United manager to win the Division One title since 1967. By November 1986 he was out of the door.

Monday, 27 August 2018

1987: Rangers 2 Celtic 2

There are some football matches from the distant past that still leave you breathless when you watch them on YouTube. Matches played out in front of packed terraces, the atmosphere incomprehensible in relation to the sanitised experience of today, with both sets of players flying into tackles, as if their lives depended on it.

The 1985 FA Cup semi-final clashes between Manchester United and Liverpool are a prime example of this. Another is the Old Firm derby of October 17, 1987. An afternoon dripping in tension, the match alone was full of drama, passion, and controversy. Yet for four men involved, the consequences of their actions on that famous Saturday would rumble on for months to come.

Saturday, 18 August 2018

1981: City documentary

There is a strong possibility that the All or Nothing documentary covering Manchester City’s record-breaking season will make interesting viewing. Catching a glimpse of Pep Guardiola’s training methods and philosophies will no doubt be revealing. But as an outsider, I’m not all that bothered about watching something that charts the success of another club.

Give me a documentary on a turbulent football club, then you are in business. An insightful view into a football team struggling in the top flight, with uncharted access to the dressing room and Boardroom; now you are talking. I don’t want All or Nothing; I want City!

Tuesday, 14 August 2018

1987: Manchester City 10 Huddersfield Town 1

The warning signs had been there for Huddersfield fans during the 1986-87 season. Former player Steve Smith had just about managed to keep the Terriers’ heads above water, with three consecutive wins in May preventing relegation to Division Three.

There would be no such escape during the following campaign, though. In fact, the 1987-88 season for Huddersfield would go down in history as their worst ever. The bare statistics of just six wins in 44 league matches paints the picture; but it was one of the 28 defeats that is still talked about to this day.

Friday, 10 August 2018

1980s Ryder Cup selection snubs

The wildcard selections of Ryder Cup captains during the recent history of the event has often provided the odd talking point or twelve. From the moment the decision is announced, all of us have an opinion on the matter. Sometimes, even those who have missed out, can’t resist airing their view. Just ask 2018 European captain Thomas Bjorn.