I don’t remember much, if anything, of the game, except that at the start of the second half our hero gave the small group of Clarets fans assembled behind the goal at the Holte End a cheery wave as a spirited rendition of “Oh, Alan Alan, Alan Alan Alan Alan Stevenson” echoed into the Birmingham skies.
Back in those pre-punk days of long hair, loon pants, and interminable drum solos,
Even as the club entered the start of its steady decline the Northern Irish trio of Tommy Cassidy, Terry Cochrane and Billy Hamilton kept the Claret flag flying proudly on distant shores into the early 80s, with Flynn and James also maintaining the Welsh connection upon returning from their respective exiles in Leeds and
Of course, in more recent years we have seen a re-emergence of the International Claret. Phil Gray, Ian Cox, Dimitri Papadopoulos, and Gareth Taylor have all made full appearances, and of the current squad Micah Hyde, Michael Duff, Danny Coyne and loanee Richard Duffy have been called up this season by
So have we modern Clarets become blasé about the calling up of our players for international duties? It’s only a couple of seasons ago that many contributors to this site’s message board were bemoaning the fact that Papa would be missing yet another Burnley game as he jetted off to join the Greek camp. Perhaps, as with the apochryphal
There could be something to this argument, but with one major exception: during all this time, what of
Until, of course, the emergence of a certain Richard Chaplow.
Last Sunday, his appearance as a second half substitute for
As the half progressed, and with Chappy, the dominant player on the field, even the normally taciturn locals were heard to mutter into their pies: “By, yon lad’s not bad!”
All this seems a far cry from one scorching Saturday afternoon in July 2001 when, eschewing the more exotic delights of the Isle of Man Fag Packet Trophy final versus Wrexham, I headed off to north
I wrote: The highlight of the game came in the 90th minute when Richard Chaplow, receiving the ball on the edge of the area with his back to goal, in one movement turned his marker and chipped the goalie, only to see the ball come back off the bar.
Since that day there have been many more highlights. And as sure as eggs is eggs there will be many more to come.
I’ve no doubt that Chappy will go on to represent
At the end of last Sunday’s game I was fortunate to be able to grab a quick word with Richard. As the next generation of gawkish, somewhat diminutive figures clamoured around him waving programmes for their hero to sign, I tried to express my feelings of pride, excitement and joy at what he had achieved for Burnley Football Club and its supporters, how this afternoon would go down in the Club’s history.
In the end, all that came out was some meaningless Jim Bowen-like babble which was something along the lines of “Greatsupermarvellousbrilliantchappyareyerallright?”
So, several days later, and hopefully in a slightly more coherent vein, I would just like to say this:
Congratulations, Chappy, and many thanks for giving us all one more reason, out of many, for being PROUD TO BE A CLARET!!