Proud to be a Wolves Fan

I don’t know if I should admit this, but I have cried over the Wolves on three occasions…

The first was the most inconsequential of games, when we lost 4-1 on a plastic pitch against Oldham in 1990. It was a year or two after we won the third division, there was nothing riding on it, but I couldn’t comprehend us losing. As a 10-year-old boy, I literally couldn’t deal with the shock of defeat. Spoilt little brat!

(Me and) Wolves legend Andy Thompson

I then shed a tear in 2002 when me and Dad sat in the Billy Wright Stand to see our promotion dream die on a video wall. Dad looked weary and I felt bloody sorry for him.

The third time was an altogether more uplifting experience, as I watched seven heroes of yesteryear get inducted into the Wolves Hall of Fame at Molineux.

Being a Wolves fan never felt so humbling, uplifting or downright emotional, as legend after legend were celebrated in front of an adoring family.

Billy Harrison of 1908 FA Cup fame was commemorated by ex-E & S sports editor Steve Gordos, before Bill Slater, Bert Williams and Peter Broadbent were inducted into the hall.

The appetite for each anecdote and story was more insatiable than the hunger for the three course meal, and each memory swelled your levels of pride to unheralded levels.

Hearing Micky Stowell talk about Bert Williams’ England jerseys in a mouse nibbled cardboard box made you smile, while Broadbent’s wife Shirley made you cry with laughter, as she talked of pulling her flirty husband in the Civic Hall.

But the tears really started to well up when Skipper Mike Bailey took to the stage, his barrel chest hidden behind self deprecation.

Derek Parkin and Kenny Hibbitt waxed lyrical about Bailey’s indefatigable spirit, talent, and penchant for bursting opponents into the Waterloo Stand, when necessary of course. Arguably the best captain the club has had, although Bailey wasn’t having any of that.

He said he didn’t feel worthy, when the reality was that half the room didn’t feel fit to be in the great man’s company.

And then came King John Richards, who Dave Wagstaffe couldn’t believe would ever succeed at the club, being as he never drank, smoked or gambled!

Phil Parkes recalled a time when the players trained at Molineux on the morning of a game against Everton. After killing two pigeons at the back of the South Bank with such wayward shooting, Parkes was quick to take the piss.

But typically, Richards scored a 20 yard screamer during the game, and ran back to the halfway line to flick Phyllis the finger! (he scored a hat-trick and we won 4-2)

Former Wolves manager Graham Turner (and me)

Former manager Graham Turner (and me)

Graham Turner was the last man inducted into the hall, another genuine legend who was quick to downplay his achievements.

“I feel like a fraud being here,” he said. Nobody agreed with him. Certainly not Andy Mutch or Thommo, who recalled one or two lighter moments of their time with GT.

Once in a team meeting, David Barnes rubbed liquorish into his teeth and gave Mutchy a big goofy smile, bearing teeth like a dirty set of piano keys.

Mutchy got the giggles, and Turner got the yips, flinging tea cups at saucers at his head, narrowly missing a confused Robbie Dennison, before he kicked his chair back and went to storm out the room.

The only problem was that Mutchy had vaselined the door handle, thus depriving Turner of the dramatic exit he craved, cue more anger!

All in all, an evening to make you proud to be a Wolves fan and so grateful to support a club with so many unassuming stalwarts. Enough to make a grown man cry.

Up the Wolves!

Something Special

Some of you dedicated Wolves Blog followers will remember the post I did a few weeks back on Steve Froggatt, as part of the ‘Blast from the Past’ series.

Well, today something rather exciting occurred. I received a message from somebody who was very interested in what we all had to say.

Hi guys I am the studio guest for Sky sports Wolves V Villa at the weekend and I was doing some research for game when I came across this site and saw the blog about myself.

I have huge fondness for Wolves some of my best friends in football are from my Wolves days. I still play golf with bully, Thommo, Don Goodman and Dave Kelly regularly sadly Paul Birch passed away recently one of my big pals.

Froggy noq runs his own fitness business as well as working in the media

Froggy now runs his own fitness business as well as working in the media

It is an amazing football club steeped in history with amazing supporters. I’ll never forget beating West Brom at the Hawthorns 4-2 and arriving back at the ground to an amazing reception from the Wolves fans that will staywith me forever! Also the fa cup semi final v Arsenal Villa park was swamped with black and gold and you completely outsang Arsenal for the entire 90 minutes it was a shame they beat us 1-0.


It was with great sadness that I had to leave when I did. The truth of the matter was that Sir Jack wanted to sell myself and Robbie Keane to balance the books at the time. I never could understand why they wanted to sell us as I was only 23 at the time and although I had more than my fair share of injuries I felt my best years were ahead of me. I was out of contract that summer and Wolves never offerd me a new contract. As it was proved Robbie joined me at Coventry A short while later.


Yes of course I am very fond of Aston Villa too as I started my career there and was part of a team that finished 2nd in the premiership and we beat Man Utd in the coca cola cup final that season. I spent an equal amount of time at both clubs and they are the two results that I look out for first.


I do look at my days at Wolves and look at that team and think we should with the players we had have made the premiership we had some teriffic players! But injury hit us hard at times and yes as a group we did in my opinion underachieve.


As for the present team I love Mick McCarthy and his honesty. Having seen Wolves this season and I have genuine optimism about the teams cahnces of remaining in the premiership.


As for me I now run a personal training fitness company and work for tv and radio 5 live.


Best wishes to Wolves this season and thanks for the great support that you gave me during my time at the club.

Froggy

What a top bloke! 🙂

I’ve added a link to his fitness website in the sidebar if anyone is interested in checking it out.

*Just in case any of you are wondering, I followed this up to ensure it was legitimate before posting.

Blast from the Past: Steve Froggatt

It’s been a slow news day at Molineux, so ahead of my Man Utd preview tomorrow, I thought I’d slip in a cheeky post about one of my favourite former players, Steve Froggatt.

Steve Froggatt - Remembered Fondly

Steve Froggatt - Remembered Fondly

Signed from Aston Villa for £1 million by Graham Taylor, this must be one of those rare signings that you can say we got good value for some of Sir Jack’s dosh. Although he was hampered by injury at times, Froggy was a top player and produced some inspired performances in an old gold shirt.

As a little runt watching from the North Bank, I used to like nothing more than seeing Froggy burn rubber down the left or turn his full-back inside out. When we first had him at the start of the 94-95 season, he was immense and everything you could ever want from a winger.

I remember him skinning an ageing Ronny Whelan to setup Bully with an inch perfect cross, in a famous 5-0 win at home to Southend. He also roasted Bolton’s full back (I think his name was Alan Lee) in a particularly memorable 3-1 victory to take us top. Of course that season would end in tears and an unjust defeat to the Trotters.

I think it was McGhee who first played Froggatt at full-back and he excelled there to, bombing forward to support the attack. In fact, perhaps his best performance in a Wolves shirt came at left back, in that amazing 4-2 win at the Hawthorns (our last victory there, unbelievably). He was a constant thorn in the Albion’s side that day, setting up big Iwan Roberts for his hat-trick.

It was a sad day when the call of the Premiership came and we shipped Froggy to Coventry City for £1.9 million. I wasn’t surprised he did well there and even got into the England squad before having his career cut short by injury.

I wonder if he looks back on his career and thinks of Wolves as his main team? I think he played at Molineux longer than anywhere else, so I’d like to think so.

Here’s a video I just dugout from YouTube of the 5-0 win over Southend I mentioned. Look at the turn of pace and delivery for the fifth goal. What a counter attack. From Stowell’s hands to the back of the net in 4 touches.

* I might well make this ‘Blast from the Past’ feature a regular filler on days when there’s little to report, so feel free to suggest players or even do your own tribute.