Dear Diary Entry 132

Spotlight On The Joy Of ’74

John Richards with one of the most iconic shirts in Wolves’ history.

Thursday, September 8: Thrilled to see how well the long pieces I compiled with John Richards on Wolves’ 1974 League Cup final glory turned out in Backpass. Hope the man himself is as pleased when I put a copy of this fine magazine in the post for him. A click on the ‘King John’ photo to the right should lead readers to how they can purchase….we are happy to help if there are any problems.

Wednesday, September 14: Quite a smattering of well-known Wolves faces in and around the Albion v Birmingham game at The Hawthorns tonight. Jed Wallace scored the Baggies’ first-half equaliser but the evening belonged to hat-trick hero Scott Hogan – much to the joy of his team-mates John Ruddy and Dion Sanderson. Blues coach Keith Downing, with whom I managed a five-minute chat some time after 11pm, was another delighted with the outcome but there was no place in the visitors’ 18 for Jordan Graham.

Saturday, September 17: There were prominent roles for Jonathan Hayward and in particular Steve Bull during Molineux’s moving tribute to The Queen at lunchtime. Just before kick-off, Bully and Manchester City legend Mike Summerbee walked out with wreaths while the former chairman, whose family were well known to the monarch, was picked up by the TV cameras standing in the long line of Wolves personnel during the minute’s silence. I had a word with him outside after the game near where I saw another former club director, Doug Hope, on his way into the stadium three hours earlier.

Monday, September 19: Interesting to read that England fast bowler Mark Wood has name-checked two former Wolves players in his newly published book, In The Wood Life. A two-page spread on the publication in the Daily Mail revealed that when Wood is kicking the ball at the stumps to try to run batsmen out, he yells the name of a famous Newcastle player. “Sometimes it’s ‘Shearer’ or ‘Asprilla’ but sometimes it’s ‘Ketsbaia!’ he writes. And the very next paragraph reads: “I should say that I am not a Newcastle fan. I support Wimbledon because blue is my favourite colour and when I got a Premier League sticker book when I was younger, I realised my dad looked like their keeper, Hans Segers.”

Wednesday, September 21: Another opportunity has presented itself for Keith Curle with his appointment as interim manager at Hartlepool. He replaces Paul Hartley and his first task, with Saturday’s home game against Gillingham, will be to keep them off the bottom of League Two and avoid a 19th successive match without a victory, going back to March.

Friday, September 23: Great to see the photos from the They Wore The Shirt evening in honour of Andy Thompson at Molineux last night. What a career he had at the club after arriving from Albion on the same day as Steve Bull 36 autumns ago. If only all players had his personality and professionalism!

Monday, September 26: Delighted to hear that the recent Wolves Former Players Association golf day at Oxley Park – organised largely by Steve Daley – had raised more than £9,000 for charity; another terrific sum arising from another terrific turn-out.

Tim Chung with his wife Michelle and his parents.

Tuesday, September 27: Some interesting belated background on Tim Chung, with whom I had a good conversation at his father Sammy’s funeral last week. It was fascinating to learn that he went to every Wolves game in 1976-77, the season in which his dad led the club back to the top flight at the first opportunity as Second Division champions. Tim was a familiar face at Molineux all those decades ago, although he attended boarding school in London – an arrangement that left him well placed to watch games played by the club in the capital.

Saturday, October 1: There is some serious irony at play here…..Wolves let Conor Coady go to Everton, apparently because Bruno Lage wants to play with a back four and doesn’t see his captain fitting into that style. Now, a few weeks on, Coady, who has already skippered the Toffees, is starring and even scoring for them while playing in a back four – on the very day the Molineux head coach reverts to the use of three central defenders in the absence of Nathan Collins at West Ham.