From the Archives

1966 World Cup At 50 - England Triumph Through Hurst Hat-Trick, Peters Perfection & Moore Majesty

Welcome to the last of my three-part series commemorating the 50th anniversary of England’s knock-out stage matches of the 1966 World Cup (Hamburg Hammer might like to look away now…)

England had progressed to the Final of the tournament by beating Portugal in the semi-final, as detailed in Tuesday’s article. The World Cup Final of 1966 took place 50 years ago today, on Saturday 30th July 1966 – England’s opponents were West Germany in front of 96,924 at Wembley, which was a wall of noise as the players strode out of the tunnel. West Germany had reached the Final by beating Switzerland 5-0, drawing 0-0 with Argentina and defeating Spain 2-1 in the group stage before trouncing Uruguay 4-0 in their quarter-final and defeating the Soviet Union 2-1 in the semi-final.

Alf Ramsey named an unchanged XI for the third game in succession, meaning there was famously no place for Jimmy Greaves. West Germany made one change, with coach Helmut Schon bringing right-back Horst-Dieter Hottges in for Friedel Lutz. Schon, who had been assistant coach of the national side since 1956 before taking on the top job in 1964, would go on to win the European Championship in 1972 and the World Cup in 1974. He passed away at the age of 80 in February 1996.

England conceded their first goal of the tournament from open play after just 12 minutes. Sigi Held lofted the ball into the penalty area but a poor defensive header from Everton’s Ray Wilson saw the ball fall at the feet of Hemut Haller who slammed the ball low beyond Leicester’s Gordon Banks and into the far corner of the net.

The Three Lions were level within six minutes. England and West Ham United captain Bobby Moore was fouled by Wolfgang Overath. Moore’s quick thinking meant that, within five seconds of the referee blowing the whistle, he was on his feet, looked up and played the ball into the penalty area – Geoff Hurst, his West Ham team-mate, was used to his skipper’s speed of thought and was in space anticipating an early ball. He took full advantage, heading beyond a static Hans Tilkowski.

West Germany had opened the scoring after 12 minutes – and with 12 minutes to go, England thought they’d won it. A corner found Hurst lurking on the edge of the box, he worked an angle for a shot which was blocked up into the air by Hottges and Irons midfielder Martin Peters slammed home on the volley from six yards.

Joyous, jubilant scenes immediately followed but they were usurped by nerves as the England players and fans recognised how close they were to the ultimate glory. In the dying seconds, England conceded a free-kick in dangerous territory. Lothar Emmerich flashed his shot past the England wall and it struck Fulham right-back George Cohen. The ball broke for Held whose shot hit the back of Karl-Heinz Schnellinger, evaded Wilson and Uwe Seeler and drifted agonisingly across the face of goal. 22-year-old centre-half Wolfgang Weber met the ball and squeezed it beyond the lunge of Wilson and the dive of Banks to level the Final at 2-2.

Alf Ramsey had long said that the aim for England was to win the tournament. His team-talk prior to extra-time is the stuff of psychological legend. He saw the Germans were lying on the ground, dead on their feet, exhausted after 90 minutes on the hallowed but energy-sapping Wembley turf. Ramsey ordered his players to stand up, to show their opponents that they were up for the challenge, up for the fight. He told them – “you’ve won it once and you’ve given it away something stupid – go and win it again…”

England responded to their manager’s call – the extra 30 minutes were to change the lives of every player in a red shirt and catapult one man who hadn’t even started the tournament into worldwide legendary status. With four minutes left of the first period of extra-time Blackpool’s Alan Ball, who never stopped running, scampered off down the right wing in chase of a pass from Manchester United’s Nobby Stiles. He centred, Hurst controlled, spun and shot – the ball smacked the underside of the crossbar, bounced down and came back into play. As we all know, the ball was miles over the line, but the Swiss referee Gottfried Dienst ran over to speak to his ‘Russian’ linesman – Tofiq Bahramov, from Azerbaijan, gave the goal. England were 3-2 up!

To make it safe in the last minute, Moore brought the ball out of defence and played the perfect pass over the shoulder of Hurst who ran forward with the ball before thumping a fierce finish behind Tilkowski into the roof of the net. In doing so he became the first and, still to date, only player to score a hat-trick in a World Cup Final. His place in immortality was assured. The final whistle sounded and his ten team-mates joined him in securing legendary status.

In a typical display of gentlemanly conduct Moore, despite surely being beside himself with pride and joy, still had the wherewithal to note on his ascent to the Royal Box that the Queen was wearing white gloves. His only thought was to not dirty them and he wiped his muddy hands on his kit and on the velvet balustrade before shaking Her Majesty’s hand. His receipt of the Jules Rimet trophy is iconic of Moore’s own majesty and his holding aloft of the trophy still symbolises this country’s finest sporting moment. Incredibly, Moore had only recovered from testicular cancer 18 months previously.

The legacy of those England players has stood the test of time – manager Ramsey was knighted, as were players Bobby Charlton and Geoff Hurst. Ramsey died of a heart attack in 1999 at the age of 79.

Now a nod to those members of the West Germany team that day who are sadly no longer with us. Playmaker Helmut Haller died in 2012 at the age of 73 after suffering from dementia and Parkinson’s disease; forward Lothar Emmerich died of lung cancer in 2003, aged 61.

England have also lost two members of their side that day. Alan Ball died of a heart attack in 2007 at the age of 61. Bobby Moore passed away on the 24th February 1993 after a battle with bowel cancer. His legacy transcends generations – he is loved by those who saw him play, idolised by those who didn’t (such as myself – I always wore number 6 when I played) and remains an inspiration today for those who were not even born when he passed away.

England: Gordon Banks (Leicester), George Cohen (Fulham), Jack Charlton (Leeds), Bobby Moore (captain, West Ham), Ray Wilson (Everton), Alan Ball (Blackpool), Nobby Stiles (Man Utd), Bobby Charlton (Man Utd), Martin Peters (West Ham), Roger Hunt (Liverpool), Geoff Hurst (West Ham).

West Germany: Hans Tilkowski (Borussia Dortmund), Horst-Dieter Hottges (Werder Bremen), Willi Schulz (Hamburg), Wolfgang Weber (Cologne), Karl-Heinz Schnellinger (AC Milan), Franz Beckenbauer (Bayern Munich), Wolfgang Overath (Cologne), Helmut Haller (Bologna), Uwe Seeler (captain, Hamburg), Sigfried Held (Borussia Dortmund), Lothar Emmerich (Borussia Dortmund).

Apologies in advance for any lack of response to comments today – I’m busy getting married. At least I’ll never forget the anniversary! Wherever you are today, raise a glass to our heroes of ’66…


Match Report

Ten Talking Points from NK Domzale 2 West Ham 1

Lacklustre. Embarrassing. Tired. Just three of the words to describe West Ham’s performance tonight in Slovenia.

1. Michael Antonio Is. Not. A. Right Back. Period.
2. Sam Byram is a right back. But also did well at left back.
3. The back four played as if they’d never played together. Which they probably hadn’t.
4. Enner Valencia. What’s the point?
5. Adrian kept us in this leg. Especially with his double save at the end.
6. This result did not flatter NK Domzale. But it did flatter us.
7. Andy Carroll looked a spare part and never got into the game, but he got little service.
8. Why can’t commentators pronounce Feghouli? He looked a class above any other West Ham forward facing player.
9. Harvard Nortweit. Jury Still out.
10. The second leg should be some game.

A very dispiriting evening, but let’s remember, we were without Payet, Lanzini, Sakho, Ogbonna, Cresswell, Tore and Collins. This was a second eleven who put on a second eleven performance. OK, it’s the beginning of the season, and we shouldn’t overreact, but my oh my I was expecting more than this.

And the scores on the doors…

Adrian 7
Reid 6
Nordtweit 5
Antonio 4
Byram 7
Obiang 6
Kouyate 5
Noble 6
Valencia 5
Feghouli 7
Carroll 5
Quina 6

Onwards!

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Match Thread

Match Thread: NK Domzale v West Ham

NK Domzale v West Ham (First Leg)
Europa League
KO 7.45pm
TV: BT Sport 2
Radio: WHUFC.com

Please use this thread to comment on the match as it progresses.

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Dan Coker's Match Preview

Match Preview: Domzale v West Ham

The Club

Domzale were founded in 1921 and embarked on their golden age in the summer of 2002 when Slavisa Stojanovic was appointed head coach. The club were promoted to the Slovenian top flight, the PrvaLiga, in his first year in charge and went on to qualify for the UEFA Cup in 2005 and 2006. Domzale won back-to-back titles in 2007 and 2008 and won the Supercup in 2007. The Ravbarji (Brigands) finished 3rd last season.

Domzale progressed to the second qualifying round of the Champions League after both title successes, only to be knocked out on both occasions by Dinamo Zagreb. They have come across two of West Ham United’s three Europa League opponents from last season in recent campaigns – they were knocked out of the Europa League by Romanians Astra Giurgiu in 2013/14, losing 3-0 on aggregate, and their first round opponents this season were Lusitans of Andorra, who they beat 5-2 on aggregate. They defeated Shakhtyor Soligorsk of Belarus 3-2 on aggregate in the second round to set up this third round clash with West Ham United.

Manager Luka Elsner (pictured right) is a 33-year-old who holds the record for the highest number of appearances for Domzale. Elsner, a former defender, played for the club in their most successful period from 2004 to 2010. He made one appearance for the Slovenian national team and, with a birthday next Tuesday, he will be 34 when he brings his Domzale side to London.

The Players

One of Domzale’s most notable players is 25-year-old centre-back Kenan Horic (pictured left), who will wear number 6 and stands at 6’3. Horic is Bosnian and started his career with 88 appearances for Celik Zenica between 2010 and 2014 and has also appeared for the Bosnia and Herzegovinan Under-19 side. He signed for Domzale in 2014. Behind him is likely to be 22-year-old French goalkeeper Axel Maraval, who came through the ranks at Monaco. Alvaro Brachi, a 30-year-old Spanish right-back, came through the youth system at Betis at around the same time as West Ham goalkeeper Adrian. 23-year-old Gaber Dobrovoljc is a former Slovenian Under-21 international centre-back who stands at 6’ tall while 21-year-old left-back Jure Balkovec has also been capped at Under-21 level.

Another star of the team is Matic Crnic (pictured right), who will wear number 11 – he is a Slovenian left-sided midfield player who first played for Maribor, Slovenia’s most successful club. The 24-year-old moved to Domzale in 2015 and has won his first two full international caps this year. Lucas Mario Horvat is a 30-year-old defensive midfielder who was born in Argentina and came through the ranks at River Plate. Marko Alvir is a 22-year-old central midfield player.

Another leading light is Benjamin Morel (pictured left), a 29-year-old French right winger who will wear number 87. Morel started his professional career with Caen in his home country and went on to have spells with Clermont Foot and Amiens. He signed for Domzale in 2014 and has since scored 10 goals in 58 matches. He left the club for Bulgarian side Beroe Stara Zagora in February this year but swiftly returned to Domzale last month. Morel is joined in a creative role by 24-year-old attacking midfielder Zan Majer, another former Slovenian Under-21 international. 20-year-old Croatian striker Antonio Mance, standing at 6’2, leads the line

The Stadium

Domzale play their home matches at the Domzale Sports Park, a multi-purpose stadium which holds just 2,813 fans. With the local demand to see a Premier League side, the Rumeni (Yellows) have switched the match 10 miles south-west to the national stadium in Ljubljana, the Stozice Stadium.

The multi-purpose Stozice Stadium can hold 16,038 spectators when in football mode and is the home ground of Olimpija Ljubljana, who are owned by former Portsmouth, Leicester and Sheffield Wednesday supremo Milan Mandaric. It is also the home of the Slovenian national team – England won 3-2 at the Stozice Stadium in June 2015 thanks to a double from Jack Wilshere and a late winner from Wayne Rooney, a video of which has been included below to give readers an opportunity to view the stadium. England will return to the Stozice Stadium for a World Cup qualifier under the management of former Hammers boss Sam Allardyce later this year, on Tuesday the 11th October.

The Claret and Blue Army have been allocated 1,500 tickets which are likely to be in the South Stand behind the goal to the right of the cameras – the stadium is famous for its sunken design with the roof starting essentially at ground level.

The Country

Slovenia is in southern central Europe, bordered by Italy to the west, Austria to the north, Hungary to the northeast, Croatia to the south and southeast, and the Adriatic Sea to the southwest. Slovenia has 2.06 million inhabitants and Ljubljana is its capital city. The official language is Slovene and the territory is mostly mountainous with a mainly continental climate.

The match is available to watch on BT Sport 2 in the UK (Sky channel 417 or HD 457, Virgin channel 532 or HD 528, Plusnet channel 410 or HD 432, TalkTalk channel 410) with the programme starting at 7.30pm for a 7.45pm kick-off.

The Referee

Thursday’s officials are from Turkey, with the referee being 36-year-old Mete Kalkavan (pictured left); he was the man in the middle for FK Gabala’s 2-0 Europa League second qualifying round second leg home win over MTK Budapest last week, showing three yellow cards in that game. The Istanbul-born official also refereed last season’s Turkish Cup Final between Galatasaray and Fenerbahce, as well as England Under-19s’ victories over Macedonia and Finland last October.

Possible line-ups

Domzale are expected to name their strongest available line up as they bid to establish a first-leg lead, with star men Kenan Horic, Matic Crnic and Benjamin Morel all set to start.

Slaven Bilic is likely to name the strongest line-up available to him. James Collins and Angelo Ogbonna will be available for the second leg, while Diafra Sakho has also been named in the squad submitted to UEFA but has not travelled to the recent training camps. Dimitri Payet and Diego Poyet have not been named in the squad and are therefore ineligible for both legs, while Aaron Cresswell has been ruled out for four months with a knee injury – 20-year-old Lewis Page should start at left-back seeing as he is the only specialist in that position in the squad. Darren Randolph could start in goal if Super Slav sticks with the goalkeeping policy he utilised last season, while Michail Antonio could continue at right-back. Havard Nordtveit has played at centre-back during some of the pre-season tour matches and could fill in again with Collins and Ogbonna missing the first leg. Sofiane Feghouli and Gokhan Tore are in line for competitive debuts for the Hammers, either from the start or the bench. Reece Oxford flew in to join the training camp in Austria and it must be assumed that, in doing so, he could be at the forefront of Slaven’s mind for a starting place.

Possible Domzale XI: Maraval; Brachi, Dobrovoljc, Horic, Balkovec; Horvat, Alvir; Morel, Majer, Crnic; Mance.

Possible West Ham United XI: Randolph; Antonio, Nordtveit, Reid, Page; Kouyate, Oxford, Noble; Feghouli, Carroll, Valencia.

Enjoy the game – Come On You Irons!

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The S J Chandos Column

Breaking News: Tony Carr offered redundancy after 43 years loyal service!

Late yesterday evening the Mail Sports ran a story claiming that Tony Carr has been left distraught by the club’s decision to offer him redundancy after 43 years loyal service, during which time he has earned the Hammers a multi-million profit on transfer fees. The piece points out that the combined incoming transfer fees from the sale of Rio Ferdinand, Frankie Lampard, Michael Carrick, Joe Cole, Jermaine Defoe and Glen Johnson amount to £50m! Yet, the club has allegedly imposed on Carr a harsh choice of a much reduced 1 day a week role or a a statutory minimum redundancy package of £14,000.

It appears that Tony Carr has decided to accept the £14,000 package, to break possibly the last surviving club link with the famous Ron Greenwood era of the 1960s and 1970s. And it has provided the Sports Mail with the perfect opportunity to engage in a bit of ‘Hammers bashing.’ with the piece arguing that a £14,000 pay off is scandalously low when one considers the following: the £100m minimum TV income this coming season and the ‘fact’ (in their words) that the club are ‘moving in to the publicly owned Olympic Stadium, for which they are being charged a peppercorn rent of £2.5m per year.’

From the report, it would appear that Tony Carr is not only upset with the redundancy, but also the fact that his exit has been handled exclusively by the club’s HR Department, rather than at a senior level. Indeed, Carr is quoted as stating that:

‘I am very disappointed because I still feel that I have a lot to offer and West Ham has become a way of life for me after all these years. The way it has been done with people from HR, who have been here hardly any time at all, was particularly disrespectful in my opinion. But that is the way of the world these days.’

As of Tuesday evening, the club had not made a comment in response, but the article quotes David Gold, at the time of Carr’s appointment as a club Ambassador, saying: ‘We are delighted that Tony has accepted this exciting new position, which is a fitting recognition for more than 40 years service.’

Well, that may well have been the case, but it also begs the question: what has changed so radically in the short period of time since David Gold made that statement? One must also seriously question whether HR staff would undertake such an action without the prior approval of a person(s) at a suitably senior level. Moreover, it is a huge PR own goal, which was totally avoidable. And it serves to seriously undermine the many positive developments at the the club. The Sports Mail article needs a response from the joint-Chairmen of the club. If it is true (which it would seem to be from Carr’s quotes), was this issue discussed at senior/board room level and who instructed the HR staff to pursue this course of action? Why has such a loyal and successful club servant been treated in such an unacceptable fashion?

I have always been largely supportive of the current board, their plans to stabilise the club and move to the Olympic Stadium. They have done a good job salvaging the club from the Icelandic era financial crisis and moving it forward to where we find ourselves today. But, at the end of the day, it must always be about being a ‘critical friend’ and reserving the right to constructively challenge and criticise as necessary.

As such, the club would be well-advised to apologise to Tony Carr and restore him forthwith to his former role as a club Ambassador. In the past (under former regimes) the club has allowed schisms to form with such club legends as Bobby Moore and Billy Bonds. This present board has done much to compensate for past mistakes and try to heal old divisions, recognising Moore’s iconic status as our greatest player, working closely with the Moore family/charities and bringing Billy Bonds back in to the West Ham fold. So, it would be ironic and deeply counter-productive if they were to now let a similar type of rift form between the club and Tony Carr. The club really should avoid treading that path once again!

SJ. Chandos.

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