We trace Wolver­hamp­ton Wan­der­ers’ 1971-72 UEFA Cup fi­nal­ists

The Football League Paper - - NEWS - By Neil Fissler

JOHN RICHARDS ad­mits he hadn’t been abroard be­fore join­ing Wolves in 1969 – and within three years he was play­ing for the club in the UEFA Cup.

A fourth-place fin­ish in Divi­sion One was enough to book Bill McGarry’s side a place in the newly cre­ated UEFA Cup. And for Richards and his team­mates it was the start of a great ad­ven­ture which would take them all the way to the fi­nal.

They dis­patched Por­tuguese side Aca­dem­ica Coim­bra, Dutch out­fit Den Haag and East Ger­mans Carl Zeiss Jena with­out los­ing a game.

“It was the first time we had been in Europe since the 1950s,”said Richards. “So for our gen­er­a­tion it was a new ex­pe­ri­ence.


“There was no fear at all. It was a break from the league and it was an ad­ven­ture – a lot of us young lads hadn’t ever been abroad.

“The first time I had been abroad was when I came to Wolves. Sud­denly you were go­ing to Por­tu­gal and East Ger­many – it was a whole new world.

“I en­joyed ev­ery minute of it.When you look back we were a good team – and we played some top sides.”

Ju­ven­tus were the op­po­si­tion in the quar­ter-fi­nals and McGarry hit upon the idea of tak­ing Juve leg­end John Charles with his side to Turin for the first leg.

Af­ter draw­ing 1-1,Wolves made no mis­take, win­ning the sec­ond leg 2-1 to book a place in the semi-fi­nals against Hun­gar­ian side Ferenc­varos, who they edged out 4-3 on ag­gre­gate.

“It was a bit of a coup tak­ing John Charles to Turin be­cause sud­denly we were wel­comed with open arms,” re­called Richards. “Ev­ery­one was shout­ing at him in the street and we even got dis­counts when we went shop­ping! It made a dif­fer­ence to us.

“When we walked into the sta­dium John was with us. Nor­mally you would get a lot of an­i­mos­ity but we had none of that. Af­ter we drew 1-1, Bill McGarry said we have won this now be­cause they will not send out a full team to Mo­lineux.

“They wanted to win the Ital­ian league and that’s what hap­pened. I think they left out four of their top play­ers, and we won 2-1,” he adds.

There was, how­ever, no fairy­tale end­ing. In an all-English fi­nal against Tot­ten­ham,Wolves lost 2-1 at Mo­lineux and then drew 1-1 in north Lon­don. 1. Hugh Cur­ran: A striker who ran sev­eral pubs as well as a ho­tel, he then be­came a su­per­vi­sor at the park and ride ser­vice in Ox­ford where he is now based. 2. Ber­tie Lut­ton: A North­ern Ire­land in­ter­na­tional mid­fielder, he em­i­grated to Aus­tralia in 1974. Has worked as a su­per­vi­sor for a lo­gis­tics com­pany and pre­vi­ously worked in a ware­house. 3. John Old­field: The goal­keeper set­tled in the Hud­der­s­field area where he ran a sports and so­cial club in York­shire prior to his death in Leeds in Oc­to­ber 2002. 4. Frank Munro: Scot­land in­ter­na­tional de­fender coached in Aus­tralia and worked as a traf­fic of­fi­cer at Mel­bourne Air­port. He lived in Wolver­hamp­ton un­til his death in Au­gust 2011 aged 63. 5. Phil Parkes: Worked as a goal­keep­ing coach be­fore be­com­ing a builder and also a match­day am­bas­sador in the hos­pi­tal­ity suites at West Ham United. 6. Dave Wood­field: A de­fender who spent 11 years coach­ing and work­ing as a school teacher. Taught his­tory and ge­og­ra­phy in Asia and the Mid­dle East. Now lives near Cam­bridge. 7. Danny He­gan: The North­ern Ire­land mid­fielder worked at But­lins be­fore un­der­tak­ing a host of clean­ing and labour­ing jobs be­fore his death in Birm­ing­ham in Au­gust 2015 aged 72. 8. Les Wil­son: A ver­sa­tile player who set­tled in Canada and be­came an ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of the Bri­tish Columbia Soc­cer As­so­ci­a­tion be­fore work­ing as a foot­ball con­sul­tant. 9. Bernard Shaw: The full-back spent three decades run­ning a North Der­byshire pub be­fore mov­ing into prop­erty and build­ing from his base in Bakewell. 10. Paul Walker: A mid­fielder who re­turned to his na­tive Brad­ford and runs a busi­ness lo­cally that man­u­fac­tures card­board. 11. Bobby Gould: A striker who en­joyed a suc­cess­ful ca­reer in man­age­ment in­clud­ing spells in charge of Wim­ble­don and Wales. Is now a ra­dio pun­dit. Son Jonathan was a pro­fes­sional foot­baller. 12. John Richards: The striker went into lo­cal gov­ern­ment be­fore re­turn­ing to Wolves as man­ag­ing di­rec­tor. Is now op­er­a­tions di­rec­tor of Pitch­care, in Telford. 13. John McAlle: Af­ter re­turn­ing to the Wolver­hamp­ton area, he went into land­scape gar­den­ing. Is now re­tired, liv­ing in Bre­wood, south Stafford­shire. 14. Kenny Hib­bitt: An England Un­der-23 mid­fielder, he has man­aged Wal­sall, Cardiff City and Hed­nes­ford Town. Has spent 12 years work­ing for the Pre­mier League. 15. Sammy Chung: He man­aged Wolves, Tam­worth and Don­caster, and has also coached in the UAE and at Stoke City. Worked in a chil­dren’s home. Now lives on the Som­er­set coast. 16. Derek Dougan: Had a spell as chief ex­ec­u­tive and chair­man of Wolves, later work­ing in mar­ket­ing and dab­bling in pol­i­tics. Died in Wolver­hamp­ton in June 2007 aged 69. 17. Dave Wagstaffe: A winger who went into the li­censed trade in Black­pool and Wolver­hamp­ton where he ran Waggy’s Bar at Mo­lineux. Died of a heart at­tack in Au­gust 2013 aged 70. 18. Mike O’Grady: The England in­ter­na­tional mid­fielder worked for York­shire TV and then at the Royal Oak Pub in Aberford near Leeds un­til his retirement. 19. Mike Bai­ley: A mid­fielder who went into man­age­ment with Here­ford, Charl­ton, Brighton, OFI Crete and Leather­head and has held a num­ber of other coach­ing and scout­ing posts. 20. Jim McCal­liog: Af­ter man­ag­ing Hal­i­fax and scout­ing for Ori­ent, the mid­fielder man­aged sev­eral pubs and ho­tels. Now runs a B&B in Ayr­shire. 21. Gerry Tay­lor: A de­fender who af­ter re­tir­ing in 1976 spent 26 years in Stafford­shire Po­lice. Then worked at the RAF Mu­seum in Cos­ford. 22. Derek Parkin: The England Un­der-23 full-back went into a land­scape gar­den­ing busi­ness be­fore go­ing to work for a char­ity.























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