Tin Man, Eyresy and Cooky

Last updated : 05 May 2006 By TS with Ian Fletcher at Derby
Ted McMinn at Derby on Monday
There weren't too many Clarets at Derby or Oldham but most of the 1,100 crowd at Accrington last night were very much Clarets to celebrate with Paul Cook following his retirement.

But let's start at Derby where nearly 33,500 fans, a new ground record, graced Pride Park on May Day bank holiday Monday for the benefit match for Ted 'Tin Man' McMinn. They were entertained by a Veteran Derby XI and the Rangers side that won nine Scottish titles in a row.

Derby included among others Peter Shilton, Stuart Pearce, Nigel Clough, Paul Goddard, Dean Saunders, Igor Stimac and Mark Wright. Rangers XI included Andy Goram, Chris Woods, Ally McCoist, Stuart McCall, Gordon Durie and Ray Wilkins. The 15,000 fans who travelled from Glasgow created a carnival atmosphere with their songs which didn't stop for the whole 90 minutes.

After a delayed start, the game commenced at a frenetic pace and any thoughts that this was not going to be a competitive game were quickly dispelled with some wayward tackling, notably by Pearce and Stuart McCall. The early exchanges came from the Derby side and they nearly scored within the first minute through Dean Saunders.

Both Goram and Shilton were at their best, but after coming out to intercept a ball, Shilton had to make an early exit - making way for Lee Camp, the Derby No.1. It was his mistake that led to the first goal by Rangers on the half hour mark - a poor punch was headed back into the box for McCoist on the six yard line to head home.

This spurred Derby to life and they scored two quick goals, on the break, just before half time through Pearce and Clough. - the two former Nottingham Forest players scoring for their arch rivals. This after Pearce had been light-heartedly booed for most of the first half.

The half -time entertainment consisted of a pipe band which only created a greater atmosphere for the Rangers fans. Tin Man came out onto the pitch and took the applause from the whole of the crowd, and received a massive standing ovation.

The second half began with Derby introducing Bobby Davison in place of Goddard and within five minutes, he added to the score line to make it 3 - 1 to Derby. They then took their foot off the gas, making substitutes, such as Kevin Hector and Lee Carsley as the midfield tired. These changes only served to assist Rangers, who came back in the game with a perfectly weighted cross from McCall, which was met at the back post by McCoist on the volley.

Within minutes, this was then added to and Rangers drew level through Durie shot from outside the box. Both sides made changes to aid the weary legs - notably, Roy McFarland coming on for Derby in defence. Rangers finished the game with 12 men, with Tin Man's teenage son Kevin playing as striker alongside McCoist. - the stature and the running uncannily like his father. It was a great day out for all who attended and a perfect tribute to a brilliant player.

At Boundary Park on the same afternoon almost 3,000 were there to support David Eyres in his benefit game which ended with a Latics Legends team beating a celebrities team 11-4. As well as going in goal and saving a penalty from Paddy McGuinness, from ‘Max and Paddy' he scored a couple of goals whilst another former Claret Tony Philliskirk grabbed a hat trick.

To complete the benefit games it was Accrington last night and a former Burnley XI managed by former Burnley manager Stan Ternent. There might not have been an Ian Wright or an Andy Payton but it was very much a Burnley team that played in front of an unknown goalkeeper in 4-4-2.

The line up was: Goalkeeper, Dean West, Steve Davis, Graham Branch, Paul Weller, Micky Mellon, Tony Grant, Paul Cook, Lenny Johnrose, Andy Cooke, Gareth Taylor.

The Burnley side were 3-0 up at the interval with goals from Crewe pair Grant and Taylor and a superb striker from Cook, but as we run the changes at half time the game turned on its head. With just nine minutes of the second half gone we had gone from 3-0 up to 4-3 down but a stunning goal from the only other ex-Burnley player to take part, Tony Ellis, mean honours were even at 4-4.

There were other ex-Clarets there including a current Premiership manager Kevin Ball. The limping Bally took his place in the dug out behind Stan along with Ronnie Jepson, John Mullin, Ian Cox and Gordon Armstrong.

All three of them will have enjoyed their days and all three of them have, during their careers, left Burnley fans with some great memories.