Merthyr Imp

Football Days

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Forest..........Notts........Mansfield............all losing.............

Edit.............lost

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Re Benjamin 1945 #102

Can anyone remember the last time Forest, Stags and County all won on the same day and had the traditional 3pm kick off time?

Carni #101, can you remember Forest paying 100,000 quid for Jim Baxter in December 1967. One of the most skilful players ever to wear the famous Garibaldi red shirt.

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He may have been one of the most skilful players but his best days were long gone before he came to Forest. Below is a Nottingham Post report. I can remember seeing Baxter play at the City Ground.

http://www.nottinghampost.com/Forest-fans-saw-best-Baxter/story-15254445-detail/story.html

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Well I wore my new red and white socks last week when we beat Leeds, so I wore them again yesterday.

After the poor display against a deplorable Huddersfield side, I think I'll confine them to the back of my drawer.

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A Sunday game in October 1985 and Notts had sunk back into Division 3 (now League 1), hence I was able to see them play Lincoln at Meadow Lane. Jimmy Sirrel was now back in the manager's seat.

Result was 3-2 to Notts in front of a crowd of just over 6,000. Scorers were Rachid Harkouk(2) and 'Charlie' McParland for Notts, with Bob Latchford (well past his best by that time, unfortunately) getting one of Lincoln's goals.

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My last ever visit to the City Ground - I hadn't realised it was so long ago - was 20th December 1986. I was probably attracted by seeing the former Lincoln City player Glenn Cockerill playing for Southampton. Game finished 0-0 in front of only 15,394 spectators - and this was despite Forest being second in the league table at the time (behind Arsenal).

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Note the advert bottom left on the Forest team page.

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Think we were at the City ground a few times at the same time Merthya,.......my last match was against Yeovil in the play offs,a few years ago now.........

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Forest,Notts and Mansfield all go down again..............never really liked Leicester but they are in for a shout at the Premier title this season,.....hope they pull it off,..........it'll make a nice change from the big 5........and they are on our border..........

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What pi55es me off intensely is the fact that we beat Middlesbrough away 1-0 who were top or thereabouts. Then we lose successive home matches against arguably two of the worst teams in the division. Notably Huddersfield and Bristol City.

Consistency..... non existent !

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He may have been one of the most skilful players but his best days were long gone before he came to Forest. Below is a Nottingham Post report. I can remember seeing Baxter play at the City Ground.

http://www.nottinghampost.com/Forest-fans-saw-best-Baxter/story-15254445-detail/story.html

Jim Baxter had arguably his greatest ever game only a few months before Forest signed him in December 1967 when he dismantled England almost singlehandedly at Wembley in April '67. Nobody could lay a glove on him that day. He was imperious.

It wasn't though a true reflection of his waning capabilities for playing at a consistent level week in week out due to his poor fitness levels and the drinking. Forest however sought a get-out-of-jail-free card in Jim to please a very disgruntled City Ground crowd at the time due to key players being sold off. I've even heard the story that Forest could actually have paid less than a hundred thousand for him but chose not to in order to make a 'statement', which seems ridiculous in hindsight but is arguably a good insight into some of the running of the club at the time.

Jim Baxter was an amazing footballer - no question whatsoever. As said, Forest never got to witness that monumental talent though, only in odd glimpses. However, even some of the Post reports at the time referred to him being light years and several passes ahead of some of his Forest teammates in quickness of thought. His body wasn't complying any more though due to the abuse he'd given it.

It was the way it had to be with Slim Jim - a genius but certainly a flawed one. A shooting stat that Nottingham didn't have the true privilege of seeing at it's zenith.

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In the words of the Trent End song of the time.

Come on without, Come on within, You've not seen nothing like the Mighty Jim

Mighty Quinn - Manfred Mann

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Two years after my last visit I went along to Meadow Lane at the start of the 1987/88 season with Notts still in the Third Division.

New Chairman was Derek Pavis and new manager was John Barnwell. Gary Birtles and Gary Mills had also recently joined from Forest, with Birtles scoring twice in what must have been an entertaining 4-4 draw against Wigan Athletic (the other two goals were from Geoff Pike). Attendance was 6,344. In the Wigan side was Paul Jewell who later managed them into the Premier League.

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Advertising in the centre pages were the Grand Central Diner occupying the former London Road High Level station, and I don't know what became of PaperPak, but an office supply company that doesn't know how to spell 'stationery' doesn't inspire much confidence in it.

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Paper Pak were in Basford, they must have been there a while if they were stationary.

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Merthyr Imp, one of the things that stands out in your programmes is all the writing on them. It's something that I'd never do myself. One of these days I'll have to look at my old programmes. Trouble is, there're boxes of them. :)

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Merthyr Imp, one of the things that stands out in your programmes is all the writing on them. It's something that I'd never do myself.

Yes - some of them would be worth a bit of money otherwise. But it's something I've always done and still do it - I'm too old to change now!

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Next visit to Meadow Lane was February 25th 1989. Notts were still in Division 3, at the time just above the relegation zone, although this 1-0 win over Bristol Rovers (Paul Barnes the scorer) would have eased matters a little, and by now Neil Warnock was manager. Attendance was just over 5,000. Some managers-to-be in both teams.

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Looking at the piece on the Noticeboard page (something that appeared in many football programmes at the time) it's interesting to be reminded of how close we came to being forced to have an identity card in order to go to a football match. Thankfully it didn't happen.

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Nice one Merthyr............love your posts of old programmes..........spoke with Mcparland couple of weeks ago,and John Mountney who passed away recently, the vice chairman was a lovely man and devoted to Notts,he was a director of A.B Gibsons of Daybrook when i worked for em in the 70s,..........keep em coming mate.........

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But it wasn't long before my next visit to Meadow Lane - early in the 1989/90 season. Neil Warnock still the manager, and still in Division Three, it was Notts 0 Reading 0 in front of a crowd of around 4,600.

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In the light of recent events it's interesting to read the following letter - and the note at the top of it - which was printed in the programme:

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After a long gap my next - and last, to date - visit to Meadow Lane came on 15th August 1995 when Notts, newly relegated to what is now called League 1 were host to Lincoln City in a League Cup First Round First Leg match.

Following relegation Notts had appointed two former Lincoln managers, Colin Murphy and Steve Thompson as General and Team Manager respectively. There were also three former Imps in the Notts lineup in the shape of Phil Turner, Gary Strodder and Devon White. In front of just under 3,500 people, White scored both goals as Notts won 2-0. He did the same in their 2-0 Second Leg win a week later.

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