Fan’s mem­o­ries of ‘66 re­vealed in book

Macclesfield Express - - FRONT PAGE - STU­ART GREER

AMACCLESFIELD man features in a new book about Eng­land’s fa­mous World Cup vic­tory in 1966.

Howard Miller­man was at Wem­b­ley to see English foot­ball’s great day 50 years ago.

Then only 17, he was lucky enough to get a ticket through his dad’s con­nec­tions at Manch­ester United.

As a re­sult Howard was sat among foot­ball greats Ge­orge Best and Mike Sum­mer­bee.

Howard’s ac­count of Eng­land’s vic­tory over West Ger­many now features in a book called ‘66 on ‘66: I was there’ by Matt East­ley.

The book has col­lected to­gether tes­ti­mony from 66 fans – the jour­nal­ists, the celebri­ties, the mu­si­cians, the po­lice of­fi­cers, the ball boys and the of­fi­cials – who all wit­nessed that fa­mous match.

Howard, 67, said: “When I took my seat I was amazed to find my­self just be­hind these play­ers. I got Ge­orge Best’s and Mike Sum­mer­bee’s au­to­graphs in my pro­gramme and, to this day, I still can’t work out whether that de­val­ues or adds value to it.”

“We had good seats, on the same side as the royal box, level with the edge of the penalty area. We were en­trance 73, row four and my seat was 82.”

Amaz­ingly, in the years since Howard re­lies purely on his first hand mem­ory and has never watched a record­ing of the game.

He said: “I’ve never watched the whole game on tele­vi­sion but, in my mem­ory, I re­mem­ber this con­stant ebb and flow. It was a great game.”

No one knows for cer­tain how many West Ger­man fans were present at the fi­nal but Howard be­lieves there were 20,000.

He said: “When Ger­many scored early on, it seemed to me they were ev­ery­where.

“When they scored that first goal, I saw them all over the ground, spring­ing out of holes like rab­bits.

“I could not be­lieve how many there were of them. I just was not ex­pect­ing it. But it was a day I will never for­get.”

Howard runs a con­sul­tancy firm for chil­dren’s homes and lives in the town cen­tre with his part- ner Maria daugh­ters Joanne.

Au­thor Matt East­ley said: “Count­less words have been writ­ten and spo­ken about this ex­tra­or­di­nary match which made na­tional he­roes of the and Clare twin and team and its man­ager.

“Yet this book es­chews those men who sported the Three Lions that day and, in­stead, talks to dozens of other peo­ple who were present.”

The book is on Pitch Pub­lish­ing priced £19.99.

Stu­art Thomas

●● Howard Miller­man was at the World Cup Fi­nal in 1966

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