Tag Archives: portsmouth

Nugent Strike Earns a Point at Pompey

Portsmouth 1:1 Leicester City

David Nugent’s superb strike against his former club earned Nigel Pearson’s side a creditable point from the trip to the south coast on Saturday…

Nigel Pearson named an unchanged side, despite Sol Bamba being available after suspension, while new Pompey boss Michael Appleton started with new loan signing Joe Mattock, who was booed by the visiting fans through the first half.
This at least gave them something to do, because otherwise the first half was pretty dour. Early on Peltier cut in from the right and set himself up for a shot on goal but missed the target; Nugent sent an effort narrowly over; and a long range Gallagher free-kick flew just over, but that really was it.
Pompey stepped up a gear in the second half and should have gone ahead soon after the break, but Schmeichel produced perhapos his best save in a City shirt to date, blocking a Kitson header from just 5 yards out.
City also had their chances with Henderson saving well from Dyer and Mills going close.
But it was Pompey who took the lead soon after Pearson had reorganised, bringing Howard and Danns on for Gallagher and Beckford. In the 68th minute Norris picked up a half clearance on th eedge of the box and beat Schmeichel via a big deflection off Mills.
City were level 6 minutes later, however, following great work from Nugent. He dcleverly dummied King’s pass, to him which allowed Howard to send him through and with defenders closing in the former-Pompey man drilled a 22 yarder into the bottom left hand corner.
City survived a late scare when Norris swerved a fierce shot against the left hand upright, Schmeichel regaining his feet and throwing himself across goal to save Mullins’ follow up effort.

Although you might think City would be content with a point from such a tough fixture Nigel Pearson disagreed: “I know this is a difficult place to come but I think we need to have higher expectations of ourselves. The encouraging thing is that we finished the game well and the players showed a determination to get back into the game having gone a goal behind.”

Portsmouth: Henderson, Halford, Rocha, Pearce, Mattock, Ward, Thorne, Mullins, Huseklepp, Norris, Kitson. Unused Subs: Ashdown, Mokoena, Benjani, Ben Haim, Kanu.
Leicester: Schmeichel, Peltier, Mills, St Ledger, Konchesky, Gallagher (Danns 65), King, Wellens, Dyer, Nugent, Beckford (Howard 65). Unused Subs: Weale, Bamba, Fernandes.

Referee: Phil Gibbs (West Midlands). Attendance: 14,391.

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What you are saying about: GOT, NOT GOT…

What people are saying about ‘GOT, NOT GOT – The A to Z of Lost Football Culture, Treasures & Pleasures…

* Well, what can I say – your book is a FINE piece of work! Honestly, I think its brilliant and I have seldom put it down since I picked it up…

* The best book about football written in the last 20 years.

* I found myself engrossed again in the trivia that so preoccupied my life between the age of 5 and 15 and laughing until my ribs hurt.

* Wonderful book, great illustrations and is a throw back to days when football was more important than anything else, Superbly written and put together.

* If there’s anyone in your life who attended football when it was still good (60s- 80s) buy them this book and they’ll love you forever.

* I don’t even follow football anymore but I love this book. It’s packed with memories of the game when it was a simpler more enjoyable (to me anyway) sport.

* Superb stuff. Anyone who grew up in the seventies with even a passing interest in football, let alone City, will love this book.

* I utterly and completely love it… so much stuff in there that I’d pretty much forgotten about, but which is a joy to rediscover.

Featuring: Aberdeen, Arsenal, Aston Villa, Birmingham City, Blackburn Rovers, Blackpool, Bolton Wanderers, Bristol City, Bristol Rovers, Brighton & Hove Albion, Burnley, Cardiff City, Carlisle United, Celtic, Charlton Athletic, Chelsea, Coventry City, Crystal Palace, Derby County, England, Everton, Fulham, Hearts, Hibs, Hull City, Ipswich Town, Leeds United, Leicester City, Liverpool, Luton Town, Manchester City, Manchester United, Middlesbrough, Millwall, Newcastle United, Northern Ireland, Norwich City, Nottingham Forest, Notts County, Plymouth Argyle, Portsmouth, QPR, Rangers, Reading, Scotland, Sheffield United, Sheffield Wednesday, Southampton, Stoke City, Sunderland, Swansea City, Swindon Town, Tottenham Hotspur, Wales, Watford, West Bromwich Albion, West Ham United, Wigan Athletic, Wimbledon & Wolves…

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Sven’s Fifth Signing Arrives

Sven Goran Eriksson signed his fifth new player of the summer yesterday when David Nugent joined the City squad…

Dave Nugent signed yesterday as a free agent, his contract with Portsmouth having expired, and is the third Liverpudlian Sven has brought in this summer.
Nugent commanded a £6M fee when Harry Redknapp signed him for Portsmouth from Preston in 2007, and has a hundred percent scoring record for England, having scored on his debut (and onloy game to date) against Andorra in Barceleona in 2007.
Sven said of his latest signing: “David is another player who made it very clear he wanted to play for us. That is a pleasing sign and shows we are moving in the right direction. He is a high-calibre footballer.”


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Play Off Hopes Fade After Pompey Defeat

Leicester City 0:1 Portsmouth

A sunny day at Filbert Way saw formerly bright hopes of a play-off place darkening as Portsmouth beat a deflated City 1-0 on Saturday…

Sven Goran Eriksson made one change to the side that won at Scunthorpe with two-goal hero on the day Vitor, being replaced by Bruma.
Following the recent appalling events in Japan Yuki Abe led the side out before a well observed minutes silence.
City started brightly in front of a big crowd, and should have taken an early lead, but Yakubu headed wide when connecting with a good Gallagher cross.
But that good start counted for nothing as Pompey took a 13th minute lead. Halford’s long throw from the right saw Bamba and Ricardo in a mix up. The keeper never made his punch and Bamba’s header only went as far as Nugent, who cooly steered a half volley into the empty net.
Four minutes later City went close to an equaliser when Gallagher delivered an accurate corner from the left but Pompey keeper Ashdown threw out a fist to send Bamba’s header over the bar.
Chances were scarce as the visitors closed City down: Gallagher sent a long range effort just the wrong side of the post in the 25th minute, but other than that it was a frustrating spectacle for the home crowd.
The second half wasn’t much better. Yakubu continued to look out of form in front of goal and City were struggling to make any kind of dent in a defence that had kept seven clean sheets in the last eight games.
The best chance on the hour when a good ball from Bruma picked out an intelligent run from Gallagher, but despite a great first touch Ashdown was swiftly out to smother the shot with a vital block.
The introduction of Dyer and Waghorn for Abe and Vassell made no difference against a well drilled defence and the best opportunity in the closing stages came when Da Laet clearly handled in the area but escaped the ref’s attention.
Portsmouth should have gone 2-0 up but Ward screwed his shot from close in wide when it looked easier to score.
A fierce shot from Naughton on the right was well saved by Ashdown, and there was no way back for a flat looking City side.
A disappointed Sven commented: “From our performance over 90 minutes we did enough to get at least a draw. We created some good chances. I can’t criticise the team. They tried hard enough. They stood up and battled against a very physical team.”

Leicester: Ricardo, Bamba, Naughton, Mee, Bruma, King, Abe (Dyer 61), Wellens, Yakubu, Gallagher, Vassell (Waghorn 68). Subs Not Used: Vitor, Moreno, Oakley, Berner, Weale.  
Portsmouth: Ashdown, Halford, Rocha, Hreidarsson, De Laet, Lawrence, Mullins, Cotterill (Ward 64), Hogg , Kitson, Nugent  (Dickinson  74). Subs Not Used: Kilbey, Ciftci, Flahavan, Kanu.

Referee: P Tierney (Lancashire). Attendance: 26,645.

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Nightmare at Fratton Park

Portsmouth 6:1 Leicester City

Paulo Sousa’s City career suffered what might be irreparable damage as his side collapsed against bottom placed Portsmouth at Fratton Park on Friday night.

“Someone is in line for a real beating – Leicester City boss Paulo Sousa.”
The Mercury headline was quickly proved right, though probably not in the way Sousa intended. 
Sousa made four changes to the side that won a League Cup tie on the same ground four days earlier with Oakley, Neilson, Berner and Waghorn in for Moreno, Lamey, Kennedy and Gallagher. That meant no place for Hobbs in the centre of defence.
After a cagey opening ten minutes the first disaster of the night befell City. Lawrence delivered a corner from the right and as Morrison went up for an aerial challenge with Kitson he inexplicably stuck out an arm and made contact with the ball. He was given a card to match his yellow shirt and Lawrence slotted a perfect spot-kick low to the right, sending Logan the wrong way.
City thought they had pulled a goal back when a great ball from Dyer sent King through to beat Ashdown, but the linesman flagged for offside while replays showed King to be dead level with the last defender.
The home side applied some pressure and Logan saved well from a well struck Lawrence shot, while Brown sent a low shot just wide of the right hand post.
At the other end a rare chance for City saw Waghorn fire narrowly wide from 35 yards. 
City’s night went from bad to worse in the 32nd minute. A long ball over the top saw Vitor wrapping his arms round Nugent, who went to ground just outside the area. The ref called it as denying a goalscoring opportunity and Vitor was dismissed with a straight red. Lawrence’s free-kick then took a big deflection which carried the ball over the diving Logan and into the net.
Two minutes later Hobbs replaced Abe as Sousa reorganised his defence.
The second half turned into a nightmare for City and their loyal followers.
Dickinson skimmed the crossbar with a hopeful long range effort, but ti was only a temporary let-off.
In the 57th minute Portsmouth made it 3-0. Logan did well to save a Kitson drive and then blocked Nugent’s follow up, but couldn’t reach Nugent’s second attempt, with no aid in sight.
Just 15 seconds after the restart it was 4-0. Morrison’s second disaster of the night saw him lose possession to Nugent who squared for Kitson to chip the ball over the exposed Logan and into the net.
City managed a reply in the 71st minute when Howard battled with two defenders before toe-poking the ball home from close range.
But that rare decent moment was only a brief respite. In the 83rd minute a cross from Lawrence wasn’t dealt with by a defence that appeared to be melting away and Kitson had an easy finish for 5-1.
Portsmouth then reached half a dozen in time added on with almost embarrassing ease… Brown finishing from an acute angle to complete City’s misery.
It was a dreadful night for City, witnessed by the SKy TV cameras and made still worse by the apparent love-in between the Portsmouth fans and the beaming Milan Mandaric.

Sousa was defiant: “We need to keep fighting and the fans need to believe in us. We feel terrible but we want to turn things. I see good spirit in the squad. I never feel under pressure. I feel very secure in myself and very positive. We will turn things.”

But there was little evidence of any spirit on the field on a terrible night for City.

Portsmouth: Ashdown, Rocha (Sonko 82), Dickinson, Ward, Lawrence, Brown, Mokoena, Utaka, Mullins (Ciftci 75), Kitson, Nugent (Kanu 78). Subs Not Used: Flahavan.
Leicester: Logan, Berner, Neilson, Miguel Vítor (sent off 31), Morrison, King, Dyer ( Fryatt 59), Oakley, Abe (Hobbs 36), Howard, Waghorn. Subs Not Used: Gallagher, Ikeme, Moreno, Moussa, Wellens.

Referee: K Hill (Hertfordshire). Attendance: 13,751.

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City Draw First Blood in Fratton Park Double Bill

Portsmouth 1:2 Leicester City

First half goals from Michael Morrison and Lloyd Dyer were enough to see City hurdle Portsmouth in the League Cup third round tie at Fratton Park on Tuesday night…

With two games at Portsmouth in four days Paulo Sousa took the opportunity to test his squad strength for this Carling Cup encounter, making eight changes to his side, Yuki Abe and Miguel Vitor both starting for the first time, and Andy King wearing the captain’s armband.
City clicked immediately and could have taken a second minute lead, Sonko deflecting away a Dyer effort.
The travelling fans were soon celebrating, however, as City went ahead for the first time this season in the third minute. Pompey keeper Ashworth managed to save another Dyer shot, but Morrison was in the right place to blast home the rebound.    
With some good work by Abe City set up a number of chances against a beleagured home side. Morrison headed over, and Howard volleyed wide, before Gallagher hit the bar from an Abe cross.
City did look a little vunerable at the back though and Logan did well to deny efforts from Nugent and Lawrence. 
Portsmouth came into the game more towards half time and Mokoena had a header cleared off th eline by Kennedy.
It was City, however, who doubled their lead two minutes before the break when Dyer, sent through by King, beat Ashdown at his near post.
Portsmouth almost found a way through in first half injury time when an error saw Nugent in on goal, but Logan produced another fine save.
Pompey began the second half in determined fashion and had the ball in the net in the 50th minute, but Sonko’s header was rule dout for a push on Moreno. 
A minute later Logan blocked yet another Nugent effort to preserve City’s two goal lead.
In the 63rd minute confusion reigned as N’Guessan came on for King, and Hughes was dismissed for the home side with a straight red card for what can only have been dissent. Not sure what he could have said, but it hit the mark.
Ten-man Pompey seemed to be galvanised by this and and Logan produced another fine save to block a Lawrence shot, but could do nothing to prevent an 82nd minute breakthrough for the home side. The City keeper got down well to parry a Ward header, but Lawrence was on hand to convert the rebound and ensure a nervy final passage of play.
But the City back line weathered some late pressure and secured a place in the last sixteen…
Friday’s repeat clash might be more important with league points at stake but Paulo Sousa was a happy man:
“Now we have an opportunity to get an important club in the next round and our fans can enjoy it, and feel closer to us. This could be very important for everyone.”

Portsmouth: Ashdown, Sonko, Dickinson, Ward, Lawrence, Mokoena, Mullins, Hughes (sent off 66), Ritchie (Kitson 72), Nugent (Utaka 80), Kanu (Brown 72). Subs Not Used: Flahavan, Ciftci.
Leicester: Logan, Kennedy, Miguel Vítor, Lamey, Morrison, King (N’Guessan 66), Dyer (Moussa 89), Moreno, Abe, Gallagher (Wellens 79), Howard. Subs Not Used: Berner, Fryatt, Weale, Hobbs.

Referee: F Graham (Essex). Attendance: 8,327. 

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Pompey Crimes

Many City fans will recall one night back in May 1993 when we travelled to Portsmouth for the second leg of our play-off semi final. Thanks to Julian Joachim’s wonder goal in the first leg City were 1-0 up in the tie and a 2-2 draw at Fratton Park secured a trip to Wembley.
Portsmouth fans weren’t happy that City had scraped into the play-offs in 6th place, miles behind them in terms of points. They were still less happy when they failed to reach the final and there were riotous scenes outside Fratton Park that night.
Many City fans were victims of violence that night, with the police unwilling or unable to intervene. Some had their cars turned over, others spent time in hospital.

Seventeen years on there might not be much sympathy for Portsmouth’s current plight among many City fans. 
But, having experienced the pain of administration ourselves we don’t want to see any team go under. Every team has its decent majority of fans, so we wouldn’t wish to see the end of Pompey this week. 
Relegation, perhaps, but not administration or liquidation. 

Good luck Portsmouth.


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FA Cup Fever Hits Leicester in 1949

The sort of presumptious headline you dread seeing, but it proved to be correct.
A fantastic performance from City saw them beat eventual League Champions Portsmouth 3-1 with two goals from Don Revie and one from Ken Chisholm. Fifty nine years after their first game in the FA Cup City had finally reached the Final…

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77 Years a City Fan: The Sam Holmes Interview

The FOX went round to pay City supporter Sam Holmes a visit in the Woodgate home he has lived in since 1942… this interview appeared in FOX 160 APR/MAY 2008…

sam h

Sam will be 91 next birthday but looks 15 years younger and is still able to call on a wealth of memories from nearly eighty years of following Leicester City.
He has a pile of memorabilia that would cause a feeding frenzy on eBay but he wouldn’t want to part with it, unless City ever get round to building that museum…

FOX: It was a while ago, but what can you remember about your first game?
SH: It was in 1931 and we played Brighton and Hove Albion in the FA Cup.
I’m afraid we lost 2-1. From that day on it has always been Leicester City for me.
It’s funny what little things you can remember. From the old toilet block on the Pop Side there was a banner hanging saying: ‘PLAY UP BRIGHTON’.
FOX: Whereabouts in the ground did you stand?
SH: In the early years I used to stand at the Filbert Street end, just behind the goal.
You were that close to the action. I felt as though I could just reach my hand out and touch Eddie Hapgood, Ted Drake, Boy Bastin, all the legends from that time. I can still remember all the names from the thirties. I used to pay sixpence to go in the Boy’s Entrance there which was under 14s.
That went on until one day I tried it and the turnstile bloke said: “You’re a bloody old fourteen! About time you went next door.”
I don’t know how old I was then, about sixteen I think, so I’d had a good run. From then on I had to pay a shilling.
FOX: You didn’t live in the city then did you?
SH: I lived in the county, Ellistown near Coalville. When I left school my Dad said: “There’s enough down the pit.” I think he wanted something better for me. So I had to come to Leicester.
I started at Equity Shoes when I was fourteen, in the cutting room. And I was in the cutting room the day I retired at 65. Fifty One years…
Saturdays we used to work until half past twelve. Then we’d walk into the market and have a plate of peas. Then walk down Wellington Street and across the recce into Filbert Street. After the game we’d go back up Wellington Street and catch a train back to Ellistown. We’d get back about 7 o’clock at night.
FOX: What did Filbert Street look like then?
SH: The Double Decker had been built. The biggest difference would be no roof on the Pop Side. They soon put a roof on it though. I always liked to stand behind the goal though, rather than on the wing. After a few years we moved to the Kop. Every home game you’d be stood in the same spot. There would be about a dozen of you, you didn’t even know their proper names or where they came from or anything, but they’d be there every week, like your match day pals.
Once I moved to Leicester I’d go to the game on my bike so I’d have to nip out a minute early to go and collect it. You’d give them a couple of pence to park the bike in someone’s alley.
FOX: What was the view like as a kid?
SH: Well you’d go down and sit on the wall at the front. Or if any kids were late they’d just be hoisted up and passed down over the heads. Imagine that now!
In later years we had a season ticket. Must have had that for about thirty years. Block C, Row E, Seats 15 and 16 at the Filbert Street end of the Main Stand, level with the 18 yard line.
When I retired from work in 1982 I said I’m not going to have a season ticket now, I’ll pick my matches. It dropped off year after year then. For want of transport to the game as much as anything.
I’d happily go still, I’ve only been once to the Walkers Stadium. When you look at it .. twenty pounds. TWENTY POUNDS!
I can imagine a lot of old boys bringing their pension back to the wives and putting it on the table and then putting a twenty pound note aside and saying, I must save that, I’ve got to go and watch City. Heh heh heh!
FOX: You definitely don’t see so many old boys down there now. They used to fill a block of the wing stand.
SH: Well yes, but I always thought that was a bit off, shoving them all to one side and not giving them the choice. They’d be shoved right up in the top corner on the right hand side. I know they knocked a bit off the price but it wasn’t very nice being shoved up in the top corner.
FOX: What did people wear in those days, obviously now it is all replica shirts…
SH: Well I’ve never worn a City shirt, but you did used to wear a scarf, especially for the FA Cup. They were the special games, when the colours would come out. That’s when you would wear your rosette. They would sell them outside, they’d be a bloke with a long broom handle and a load of them stuck on the top. But not so much for your regular league games, no. Cup ties were the highlight of the season.
I remember before one Cup game this fellow lent me his blue and white umbrella with ‘Play Up the Knuts’ on it which was City’s nickname for a while. He told me the last time it had been to a game we played Cardiff, and they won the FA Cup later that year, which was 1927. Funny to think they are in the semi-final this year!
I never kept that umbrella, I wish I had. I took it to Tottenham for a fifth round game in 1948 and we lost 5-2. That’s the only time I have ever invaded the pitch.
Before the game I ran on and went in the centre circle with my umbrella. ‘Play up the Knuts!’ Heh heh!
I think it was a record crowd for White Hart Lane that day.

spurs copy
FOX: Did they throw you out?
SH: Oh no. You’d get a life ban these days, but they’d just let you back on the terraces then. Something in me just said: ‘Go for it!’ and off I went. It didn’t help though, we lost 5-2. It’s really heartbreaking when you lose like that.
I’ve been feeling like that on Saturday nights lately. I refuse to look at the league table some weeks.
FOX: You went to every one of City’s FA Cup Finals in 1949, 1961, 1963 and 1969. Was it easier to get hold of tickets back then?
SH: Well, in the sixties I was a season ticket holder so there was no problem there. But 1949 I didn’t have one. You had to send in a card to apply for tickets and everyone would fill out one for themselves and then their grandma, granddad, brothers, sisters, aunties, uncles, everyone they knew to improve their chances. I remember a photo in the Mercury of them delivering six mail sacks full from the Post Office.
One day this bloke at work, Frank Cox, said to me: “Have you got a Cup Final ticket?”
“No I haven’t”
I told him, “..and it breaks my bloody heart.”
He said: “I’ll tell you what. Go round to my aunty’s house on Sylvan Street. She’s not there now, but here’s the key.”
I went up there and opened the door and there was a Cup Final ticket on the floor, been posted through the door! That’s how I got to the 1949 Cup Final.
I never had trouble after that being a season ticket holder. I remember buying a ticket for the 1963 Final, against Manchester United. There were touts standing outside in Filbert Street. As I came out they all came up to you, “How much do you want for it?”
I said to one of them: “Look mate, you ain’t got enough in the bank, in fact there isn’t enough money in the Bank of England to buy this!”
But it wasn’t just about the Cup Finals we had some marvellous times in the semi finals and the earlier rounds.
In 1949 we played at Luton in the fifth round and it was a 5-5 draw. We were losing 5-4 right near the end and my brother-in-law, Fred Gibbons, said “Come on, let’s go.” I said: “Half a minute, we’ve got a corner.” We took the corner and Jack Lee scored in the very last second.
The next week we played them in the replay and beat them 5-3.
I remember the 1934 semi-final we played Portsmouth at St Andrews. They didn’t put buses on back then so the only way to get to away games was by train. We went up to Midland Road Station and I think every bugger in Leicester was on that platform. Six, seven and eight deep, right from beginning to end. In came the train and where you stood you went. When it pulled in we were opposite the Guard’s Van so in we went, packed like sardines and stood up all the way to New Street, Birmingham. I’m afraid we lost 4-1.
Did you know there were three brothers played in that match? Sep Smith for City and Jack and Willie for Pompey? I was bloody heartbroken when we lost that one. It’s terrible to lose the semi-final and not make it to the Final.
revie goal
The only time I have ever lost my voice in my life was at the 1949 semi-final when we beat Portsmouth 3-1 at Highbury. I remember sitting on the steps round Eros in Piccadilly Circus and there were lots of City fans all enjoying themselves. There was sheer delight on their faces.
FOX: Was there any singing on the terraces back then?
SH: No, not really. That came later on. Although they would sing before the Cup Final and finish up with ‘Abide With Me’. I’ve still got one of the songsheets. ‘Abide With Me’ is still overpowering to me. They would be 100,000 singing their hearts out.
FOX: What were the queues like in those days?
SH: I can’t remember them being too bad, I think they always had plenty of turnstiles down there. The only time I remember queuing was for Cup Final tickets when you’d queue up round the pad behind the Kop.
I remember one time we played Everton on Boxing Day and the fog was coming down. A crowd started putting their shoulders to the gate and they knocked it down and everyone got in for nowt!
You did have to get down there early though if it was a big team visiting. Sometimes the turnstiles would be shut at around half past one for a three o’clock kick off with a full house inside.
FOX: Who were the big teams when you started going?
SH: Arsenal were a big draw, Everton, Derby County. I can remember all the players from those teams. Bill Shankly played for Preston North End and Matt Busby played for Manchester City. I saw them all.
FOX: Who was the best Leicester player you ever saw?
SH: Well Sep Smith has got to be one of them. You’ve got to have a favourite.
Keith Weller was another one, he was a good player. And Davie Gibson. I remember that half back line in the sixties of McLintock, King and Appleton. They were great together.
We’ve had some good players, too many to mention, but Sep seemed to be such an outstanding individual.
FOX: Who was the best player you ever saw at Filbert Street not in a City shirt?
SH: Cliff Bastin, Boy Bastin they called him, of Arsenal. And Eddie Hapgood of Arsenal. Stanley Matthews. So many of them… hard to pick a best one.
FOX: One of the things that disappeared many years ago was football on Christmas day, what was that like?
SH: You would always have a double header at Christmas. You would play the same team on Christmas Day and then again on Boxing Day. I used to say to the misses, “Come on, hurry up and get that dinner out, there’s a match on!”
[Sam produces a ‘League Liner’ brochure from a pile of memorabilia which contains a Liverpool away programme from 1972-73, menu, train layout map etc] Now this was a good day out…
FOX: Liverpool won the title that day didn’t they?
SH: We were up towards the Kop end and Bill Shankly walked round in front of the Kop, with them all throwing scarves to him. It was a wonderful day. Fancy having something like that today. The players all went up on that train. As soon as we left Leicester they started serving dinner. The players were all walking up and down the train, I’ve got photos of them all somewhere. I can’t remember how much it cost, but it wasn’t cheap.
[At this point Sam’s wife of 66 years, Joan, brings us a cup of tea.]
JOAN: You should hear the noise he makes in that front room when City score. He shouts his head off. He
always listens to the game on Radio Leicester…

For the next game, at home to Hull City, Sam is not in his front room listening to Radio Leicester, because he is at the game with us. As we drive to Filbert Way he catalogues the buildings and streets that have disappeared over the years. As we pass the former site of Equity Shoes he tells us that every day he would take the time to look out of the window and watch the Flying Scotsman race by. It was always on time to the minute.
Sam enjoys his trip out but is disappointed by City’s performance.
“If they go down, then there can’t be any complaints. They will have deserved it.”
Sam has been watching City for 77 years and has never seen them in the Third Division. It would be a shame to start now…

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