GET TO KNOW ME (Part 2)

HOW MANY  UNITED GAMES?…..  Stopped counting years ago, got to be around the 1,600 mark easily, forty six years following United still nothing like it! 

 HOW MUCH MONEY ?……God knows you  get frightened thinking about the money spent, the miles travelled to see United?  No, Its got to be done….I even re-mortgaged the house in 2003 to get enough money to tour the states that summer with my cousin, going to the games in Seattle, Los Angles, then finishing up in Philadelphia and New York, which seemed appropriate at the time, as I’d shipped the wife and kids off to Great Yarmouth, Norfolk in a caravan, while I was away. …..I can say with a clear conscience, we both went to the East Coast that summer, What’s she got to moan about! The guilt must have got to me. In 2010 I took all the family to South Africa for that Vodacom Cup in Pretoria, throwing in a  six day safari for good measure, at the Kruger National Park, lots of Brownie points for that, i can tell you!  

FRIENDS AND ACQUAINTANCES….Made some great friends during my forty six years, following the Reds,and met some very strange people and a fair few lunatics .(thats you i’m talking about lindsay). altough on some else’s blog i probably come into second category…The lads i go with now have been and gone the distance like myself, Mick Hurley, Holmsie , Bobby and Lee I have known the longest, and they haven’t changed a bit, especially their clothes! We used to go out fridays looking for a new Hip Joint, now i think Mick’s getting a new Hip Joint….I cant forget John Daniels (former editor of Red Issue) and Big Al who still gets in touch regularly, he’s in my opening banner with me and my twin Brother……And reds i’ve met more recently in the last ten years Trevor, Fitz, Dave the Hat, and Kev make match days such a great day out along with two of my three sons Peter and Matthew who have  well and truly got the United Bug…Gaz, Dartagnon, Chew and the big fella (Andy) always meet us at games, it gets mighty crowded in the Greatstones  , But Adrian the owner looks after us, its a great watering hole on match days..Apologies to other Reds I’ve forgotten to mention, but I’m getting old…Me memories going…

GET TO KNOW ME! (Part 1)

HOW COMES UNITED?…..Family, my Dad was a born and bred Mancunian, his sister still lives in the house he was born in, just off the Middleton Road near Heaton Park Higher Crumpsall… My Missus thinks I was Gypsy,  But Dad was a soldier all his life,  serving in the Lancashire Regiment, South Lancashire’s, Queens Lancashire’s, etc, meaning we spent  all my formative years living in Warrington, Liverpool, Lancaster, as well as Germany and Hong Kong, before settling in Morecambe,  where my mum started a Bed and Breakfast, hopefully giving us a base, while dad went off unaccompanied with the army, Sadly It didn’t work out and we had to move to North West London in 1973. As I mentioned earlier, I actually started going when we lived in Liverpool with my Dad, but as we got older,me and my twin  made our own way on Battersby’s Coaches from Morecambe every week. I always drive up to games now, from Milton Keynes, but used take the train up, until the early eighties with the cockney reds.

FIRST GAME? …… United  3 v 2 Newcastle  September 1966, we lived in Liverpool at the time, I’d like to say I was on missionary work, but me dad was in the army, I remember only me and my twin  supporting United in a classroom full of vermin.(Liverpool and Everton fans)

FIRST SEASON TICKET?…..   1976  LMTB in the Stretford Groundside, about £16… had a season ticket every year since! been  in every stand at sometime or another over the years, currently Stretford Lower.

FIRST TIME I TOOK A GIRL TO THE MATCH?….   My sister came to quite a few games in the sixties, but we went as a family with my Dad. I have taken the wife a few times but she never really enjoyed it, and she feels like i’m inhibeted with her there…Anyway the final straw was when i took her and a mate of hers to villa away in the middle eighties, about twelve  of us went in a transit van, after the match, queuing in traffic we departed the van to exchange pleasantry’s with a mob of villa, they weren’t interested, but some hero amongst them, launched a brick through the windscreen, and caught the wife’s mate in the face, she nearly lost an eye, as you can guess the wife’s never been since.

SITTING OR STANDING?…..  Its always been standing, but I think I need to sit now. Ticker trouble.(I had a little heart operation at Harefield hospital six years ago) Defo miss standing though, the atmosphere at games espeacially at home now is so sterile its becoming unbearable!

FIRST UNITED HERO?…..    Denis Law, still my favourite of all time THE KING!           The original King (sorry Eric)  and definately not that imposter down the east lancs road who the media have suddenly invented some sort of coranation for him because it rymes with Kenny! ……..As for me typical family of reds in the 60’s, Mum, Dad an RSM in the Lancashire regiment, and my sister liked Bobby Charlton, our older brother loved everything George Best, me and  my twin Paul just wanted to be Denis Law…Throughout 1966-68. Denis was  the  only player who until Eric Cantona arrived, gave me a feeling of invincibility, I just didn’t feel we could lose when he played…I know we did, but does anyone else feel it about a player ?. Or was just me.

FIRST PLAYER TO DO MY HEAD IN?….   John Aston, everyone remembers him fondly because of performance in the 1968 ECF, but at Old Trafford you could hear the groans all around when he was in possession. probably harsh on him really, having to impress in a team containing the holy trinity..

FIRST EURO AWAY?….. 1976  Ajax  EUFA Cup  we lost 1-0   (First game back in Europe, since losing that dodgy European Cup Semi Final against AC Milan in  1969)         Went by coach on a David Dryer trip  (remember him) No toilets on coaches in them days, i’m certain that journey started my prostrate problems!  Dam Square with all the United fans was heaving…watching  the dutch plod, trying to empty a bar full of reds, using Dobermans and batons, not what we were used to, anyway some pissed up united fan, grabbed one of the dogs and bit it, taking a great lump out of it, you could see loads of fur in his teeth….Absolutely hilarious, I’ve often wondered if he had a tetanus jab, …             The Doberman that is!.