Bored, Bearing Up And Still Full Of Banter

Lofty On Form Despite Lockdown

Phil Parkes in action early in his long Molineux career.

We considered it high time we checked up on another of the 70somethings favourites from Molineux history and were cheered this morning by Phil Parkes’s update on life under the restrictions of coronavirus.

“I’m doing what I’m told and keeping well – but bored out of my skull,” he summed up. Which probably applies to a lot of us.

This being Lofty, though, there were some humorous tales of his day-to-day near-isolation.

“I am walking to the shop each day to buy a couple of papers and have a walk round the block at the same time – I would seize up if I didn’t,” he said.

“My son Dean is here as well and we are just keeping ourselves amused as best we can by watching re-runs of golf on TV and even the FA Cup quarter-finals of 1978.

“I saw Albion beat Forest 2-0, noticed that Willie Johnston was booked and rang him up straightaway in Scotland and told him I had seen him in trouble with a referee for a change!”

The telephone has been a lifeline for this highly popular Molineux figure of the 1960s and 1970s, who brought us up to date on who else he has been in touch with.

“I spoke to Mike Bailey last week and enjoyed a catch-up and laugh with him,” he added. “I also chat to Steve Daley every other day and to Phil Nicholls every day.

“Danny Hegan’s ex-wife is another I hear from and I recently rang Derek Possee who, like Willie, was one of those I played with at Vancouver Whitecaps.”

At this time of no football, it is revealing to cast our minds back exactly 50 years to remember Wolves at the very other extreme of the scale.

During their nightmare end to the 1969-70 First Division season, they played three games in the space of four frantic days when Easter weekend fell at the end of March.

Lofty with Steve Daley and a young admirer in more recent times.

They followed up a 2-2 draw at Arsenal on Saturday, March 28 by losing 1-0 at home to Liverpool on the Monday and then slipping to a 3-0 defeat at West Ham the very next day.

Parkes played in only the last of those three games, which came in a withering 13-match end-of-season run containing five draws and eight defeats.

“I can’t understand now why managers and players talk of tiredness and of there being too many matches,” he added. “It’s a well-known fact that players would rather play than train.”

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