Football Mecca A Lucky Ground Once More
Tottenham should not have been shocked by the three goals that came in 18 golden minutes yesterday……after all, Wolves ALWAYS win at Wembley!
We have said it before but Wolves have managed to develop the most wonderful winning habit at the home of English football – and clearly that is the case whether we are talking twin towers or iconic arch.
Across six visits, four competitions and nearly 70 years, the club have known only success at a venue that continues to create the happiest of memories for those of us in these parts.
This latest win was different, though, in some ways. It was the only one Wolves have ever achieved there with League points at stake and it was the first time they had ever visited the stadium other than in March, April or May.
Never before had the club gone longer than 14 years between Wembley trips, so we can also assume that the 30 years that had elapsed since the Sherpa Van Trophy final victory of 1988 saw to it that many Wolves fans were watching their side there yesterday for the first time.
What a pity Tottenham, Wembley and possibly the Premier League couldn’t have made more tickets available for away fans. This, of course, was also the smallest gold and black exodus to the place – and the first time there was no trophy paraded at the end of the afternoon.
But it was the best result of the year for a club who are having their best year for decades. It was the pick of the 20 League wins the club have pulled off in 2018.
Twelve months ago to the weekend, Wolves hit back for a memorable triumph with ten men at Bristol City. The hill was every bit as steep this time against a side who had hit 11 goals in their previous two matches and there was another first in as much as the club had never previously bounced back from a deficit to win at Wembley.
Ever since their shock 4-1 FA Cup final defeat against Portsmouth in 1939, Wolves had always scored first – against Leicester in the Cup Final of 1949, in overpowering Blackburn in the same showpiece in 1960, when edging past Manchester City and Nottingham Forest as League Cup final underdogs in 1974 and 1980 respectively and when overcoming Burnley in a lower-division final watched in 1988 by an extraordinary 80,000-plus attendance.
Despite Spurs’ imminent move to a spectacular new home, we now hope and trust that it will be nothing like as long before Wolves and their supporters are at Wembley again.
And next time we assume it will be for a cup final that does indeed have silverware at stake.
*Sky Sports Johnny Phillips has kindly reminded us that his feature on Wolves fans’ historic exodus by plane to Newcastle on the first day of the 1990s is scheduled to be shown, appropriately enough, on New Year’s Day, at around 1.10pm as part of the Gillette Soccer Special.