Twenty Years On….Some Surprise Revelations
The Premier League is now 20 years old. And if you think Wolves had no say in it until much, much later than its 1992 inception, read on.
Look back at the write-ups of the opening weekend’s skirmishes in August, 1992, and there are familiar Molineux names dotted all over them.
Humphrey, Flowers, Atkins, Froggatt, Osborn, Irwin, Ince, Thomas, Curle, Sinton….yep, they were there. Even full-back David ‘Digger’ Barnes had a gallop on day one, playing in a side who brought down Manchester United, no less.
The list goes on…….Darren Ferguson, Segers, Young, Tony Daley, Anderton, Regis. And any number of players who pitched up at Molineux on loan, like Stewart, Walters, Beasant, Samways, Halle, Peacock and Rosario.
One man on view, Bobby Mimms, became a Wolves goalkeeper coach. Another, Andy Turner, signed here and never played in the first team.
But you can make the following two formidable teams out of that group:
Team 1: Flowers, Humphrey, Irwin, Ince, Young, Curle, Sinton, Osborn, Regis, Thomas, Froggatt.
Team 2: Segers, Halle, Barnes, Atkins, Peacock, Ferguson, Daley, Stewart, Rosario, Anderton, Walters.
A bit short on strikers maybe but you get the idea…..some decent Wolves men were around when it was deemed that our top flight should no longer be known as the First Division. Unfortunately, none of them were at Molineux at the time.
No fewer than four (John Humphrey, Eric Young, Simon Osborn and Geoff Thomas) were at Crystal Palace, who had substitute Osborn among their scorers in a 3-3 draw with a Blackburn side containing Mimms and Atkins.
Flowers was lining up for Southampton against Tottenham, who included Turner, Darren Anderton and Vinny Samways, and Steve Froggatt, Daley and Cyrille Regis were part of Aston Villa’s side in their draw at Ipswich.
Elsewhere, Hans Segers was in goal for Wimbledon at Leeds, who were the defending League champions, and Beasant was fulfilling the same duties for Chelsea in their draw at home to Oldham, whose right-back was Gunnar Halle.
Denis Irwin, Paul Ince and Ferguson Jnr were all with Manchester United, who were destined to win that season’s title, although beaten at Sheffield United (Barnes and all) on the opening day.
Paul Stewart and Mark Walters were with Liverpool at Nottingham Forest, Robert Rosario was named for Coventry against Middlesbrough while, still in sky blue, Keith Curle represented Manchester City at home to QPR, who included Andy Sinton and Darren Peacock.
The only game in which there was strictly no representation on the pitch of past or future Wolves players was that between Everton and Sheffield Wednesday at Goodison Park.
The one between Arsenal and Norwich at Highbury nearly fell into the same category but the visitors had Craig Fleming as an unused substitute.