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Mercantile football festival 1988

Discussion in '1980's' started by realistic wolf, Jan 8, 2011.

  1. Anyone remember the Football League centenary celebrations in 88?
    A tournament at Wembley, 16 teams in a knockout competition, held over a weekend in April, each club recieves up to 3,000 tickets.
    8 teams from the 1st div, 4 from the 2nd, 2 from the 3rd and 2 from the 4th (us).
    We were located in the upper tier behind one of the goals, flanked by Wimbledon fans on one side, celebrating the fact that they had already reached the cup final with a rendition of "Phsyco's going to Wembley" and on the other Tranmere.
    I seem to remember that one of the first games in the competition was Wimbledon v Tranmere so when TFC scored we celebrated with them as if it was one of our own because we resented that a club with small support like Wimbledon could be so successful.
    Our game was against Everton, we went one down to a Wayne Clarke goal, which was celebrated by the TFC fans which didn't go down well, but when Robbie Robbie Robbie Robbie Dennison spanked one in from 30+ yards it was party time. We drew 1-1 but lost on penalties, so did'nt go any further.
    There were over 40,000 there on the Saturday, 16 different sets of fans Manyoo, Liverpool, Everton, Newcastle, Sunderland, Villa, Leeds, Wolves, it must have been a policing nightmare, but i don't remember any trouble.
    Tranmere were probably the best team in the tournament playing some great stuff, Forest won the trophy, and all of the clubs sent their full squads for a friendly tournament.
     
  2. yateleywolf

    yateleywolf Just doesn't shut up

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    I remember it quite well as it was one of the last games i went with my dad.It was a cracking atmosphere in the Wolves section and I went mad when Robbie scored.Just a shame we lost the pens as i lost interest after that and it all seemed to fizzle out.I don`t think there was any trouble but I think the Leeds fans came across giving it some and the Police had to intervene for a while.

    Best game apart from Wolves was seeing Brian Clough`s Nottingham Forest they played some great stuff and i could tell my dad was impressed.Weird looking back to imagine all the different sets of fans together some of the teams had a bus-load their i think Villa was sparsely populated across from us.

    Looking back it was quite alot of money to spend to watch your team play for 30mins i think was the time of the game.Only down-side for me was some moody Wolves fans beore the game giving it large taking the mickey out of me and my dad for some reason which i never have before or since experienced.

    Cheers for reminding me and allowing a trip down memory lane.
     
  3. Pengwern

    Pengwern Just doesn't shut up

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    No trouble? Leeds had more fans than anyone else and were at the other end of Wembley. They tried to get to our end to have a go. I remember a lot of us climbing over into the SUnderland section to support them.
     
  4. My memory has played tricks on me as I always thought that tournament was for the original founding clubs of the football league only. Obviously not, if Tranmere and Wimbledon were there. I didn't go, but saw highlights on the TV news and remember how proud I was that; A) Wolves were playing at Wembley again, B) We drew with Everton of the 1st Division, who my brother supports, and C) Robbie Dennison scored a screamer which had to be goal of the tournament.

    Just found this...

    [nomedia="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bJWuxdqDmzM"]YouTube - Newcastle United at Wembley, 1988 - Mercentile Credit Festival[/nomedia]

    It's not us, but might bring back memories.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 26, 2011
  5. Black Suit

    Black Suit Guest

    When shorts WERE shorts, eh? :D
     
  6. SingYourHeartsOut

    SingYourHeartsOut Just doesn't shut up

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    It was my first real dedicated season, and what a great season it was. There was some strange qualifying period and I seem to remember we only just made the top two to qualify from Div 4. Dennson's strike was fantastic, but sadly almost completely obscured by the pillar in front of me. Neville Southall was probably the best keeper in the country then so that made it even more special for me. I think the games were 20 minutes each way (may have been less) and it was all over in a flash. Not sure I even stopped until the end, do remember us taking most than almost every other club (except Leeds) though.
     
  7. Vietnam Wolf

    Vietnam Wolf Just doesn't shut up

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    I must have been sitting next to you behind the same pillar :D I missed the goal also. We only had a small section on the side of the ground IIRC so only one or two pillars. Are you sure it was 20 mins each way and not 10 mins ? The memory is hazy but I'd have said 10.
     
  8. marrs-guitar

    marrs-guitar Just doesn't shut up

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    It was 20 minutes each way; the penalties were then all sudden death and when Mutchy missed our third we were out.
     
  9. LINT70

    LINT70 Has a lot to say

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    I think the allocations were 5000 per club but split between seats and standing - we were in the seats in the upper tier at the same end as our terrace but on the opposite side - think Crystal Palace were the only club to sell out the full allocation, as mentioned Leeds took a lot-about 3000 i think and we were one of the better supported teams with over 2k - i remember Woves fans jumping over the railings seperating different sets of fans to support some of the other teams, no trouble whatsoever apart from Leeds coming round later in the day trying to start - just goes to show sometimes that if you treat people with respect that the vast majority will behave and show it back.

    We had a great day out there and i enjoyed this tournament even if it was so that we could sing instead of Que Sera Sera it was 'Tell me mom me mom,to put the champagne on ice,we're going to Wembley twice' as it was the same season as the Sherpa van win - it's strange that we've never been back there since.

    Oh well maybe this year eh versus Walsall!!
     

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