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Wanderers Ways. Neil Thompson 1961-2021


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Everything posted by paulhanley

  1. Aye, I know. I don't necessarily mean the dosh side of things. More the need for an older head in the middle of the park.
  2. Surprised by this one. Coleman and Hutch likely to be loaned out now I guess? Two signings - both in areas I didn't think he'd strengthen. Both with the same profile of mid-20s players, rated at League 1 level, having run their contracts down. I do think we need at least one midfield signing who doesn't fit that profile.
  3. I think he's got the squad cycle between tournaments all wrong. We've not filtered the likes of Eze, Gallagher, Palmer, Gordon in to the squad as part of a cohesive system/way of playing. Alexander-Arnold in the holding midfield role says it all really. We have the feel of a league side who made a load of signing on the last day of the deadline and then have a game two days later and play like strangers. I also think Southgate has got in to the type of manager who drowns his players in tactics and stifles them. We'll get through now we've got 4 points but I see no grounds for optimism once in the knockout stage. Obviously hope I get proved wrong.
  4. Every game so far with a decent level of entertainment. Every game with an early goal. ....erm, England up next.
  5. If Santos is staying then its Jones to be more regular at RWB and potentially means Johnston/Forrester sometimes being in the holding midfield role.
  6. The jocks never disappoint us in a tournament. Bloody hilarious.
  7. Spoke to a Wycombe fan at work today. Described Forino as "bloody brilliant", followed by. "He can do better than staying in League 1".
  8. Tommy's obituary in the Telegraph Tommy Banks, rugged full-back who became England’s oldest surviving international footballer – obituary Tommy Banks, who has died aged 94, was a footballer who won the FA Cup with Bolton Wanderers in 1958 and played six times for England, including all four of their games at that summer’s World Cup; a fearsomely tough left-back, he became the oldest surviving former England international following the death of the Luton Town goalkeeper Ron Baynham in March this year. “He had a lot to say on and off the field but knew football and was a master of his craft,” his England teammate Bobby Charlton recalled. “Fast over the ground and hard as nails – wingers didn’t like playing against him. If you had any weak spot in your make-up he’d exploit it.” Though he was never once booked, the story is still told in Bolton of how Banks would shout over to Roy Hartle at right-back, “Roy, when you’ve done with your man, chip him over here and I’ll see if he likes gravel rash” – and wingers were supposedly wont to develop “injuries” rather than travel to Burnden Park and become acquainted with the pitchside track. Thomas Banks was born on November 10 1929 in Farnworth, in Bolton, the youngest of seven children of John Banks and Catherine, née Mannion. He attended Harper Green Secondary School in the town then went down the pit at Mosley Common colliery, while playing for a local side, Partridges FC. Word of his defensive talents spread beyond Bolton, and Arsenal, Leeds, Wolves, Portsmouth and Burnley all made enquiries, while Matt Busby, who was in the process of creating his first great Manchester United side, turned up at his house with an invitation to watch the first team train. But young Tommy was a committed Wanderers fan – his older brother Ralph, had joined in 1940 – and stood firm, signing, initially as an amateur, in 1945. He made his first-team debut in May 1948, going on to play 233 league games for Bolton. While his brother Ralph was at left-back against Blackpool in the famous “Matthews final” of 1953, the highpoint of Tommy’s club career came five years later when they beat Manchester United – recently shorn of eight Busby Babes in the Munich disaster – 2-0 in the final, with a brace of goals from Nat Lofthouse. It was the death of one of the Babes, Roger Byrne, that gave Tommy his England chance. Millions of words have been written, many dreams dreamed, about how England might have fared at the 1958 World Cup in Sweden with Byrne, Tommy Taylor and the mighty Duncan Edwards in their ranks, but Banks acquitted himself well at left-back, and Walter Winterbottom’s side could count themselves as unlucky not to reach the knock-out rounds. It became an uphill struggle after Tom Finney was kicked out of the tournament by the Soviet Union in the opening game, a 2-2 draw, and England drew their next two group games – including a valiant goalless draw against the eventual winners Brazil – before losing to the Soviets in a play-off. Banks was brought rapidly back to earth when he arrived back in Bolton, resplendent in his England blazer and flannels. A local woman stopped him, saying: “Hello Tommy, you look very smart. Have you been to Blackpool for your holidays?” By 1961 Banks – thought to be the first British sportsman to appear in a TV advert, for Gillette razors – was in the autumn of his career. Needing a new challenge, he sought a move to Oldham Athletic. But under the old “retain-and-transfer” system he was at the mercy of his club, who refused to let him go for less than £10,000. George Eastham had already gone on strike to try to secure a move from Newcastle United, and their struggles would eventually end up with victory in court and a fairer system for players. But that was several years down the road, and Banks, who had also been a prominent supporter of the campaign to end the maximum wage, was forced to play out his career in non-league football with Altrincham and Bangor City, retiring in 1965. He stayed in his home town, running a newsagent’s for a while and working in the building industry. In 2012 a biography of Banks appeared, Ah’m Telling Thee by Ian Seddon – another former Bolton player – while pupils at his old school, Harper Green, staged a musical based on his life. Tommy Banks married, in 1952, Margaret Charles; they had two sons. She died in 1977, and in 1981 he married Marguerite Morris, known as Rita. His international teammate, the goalkeeper Colin McDonald, who played behind him in Sweden in 1958, takes over the mantle of England’s oldest surviving international footballer. Tommy Banks, born November 10 1929, died June 13 2024
  9. One of our best and one of our own. RIP Tommy Banks.
  10. France if I had to pick someone. This tournament (unlike the World Cup) has a history of throwing up unexpected winners: Denmark in the year they didn't even qualify for the tournament by rights and Greece in 2004. Don't fancy our lot. I think Southgate has got it all wrong with the squad cycle and we're not integrated/cohesive enough. Dearly hope I am proved wrong.
  11. Thing is after a couple of months of pre-season training in pie-land he'll be inculcated with the "we hate Bolton" chip on the shoulder mentality. Fuelled by not getting many games with us. He'll play out of his skin for two games next season inbetween defeats at Burton and Shrewsbury etc.
  12. Couldn't even get on the bench for us most of the time.
  13. We used to have our own version of the Leeds song "Marching on together" as well. Bit cringeworthy!
  14. I wouldn't disagree. What I would say is that at 23 Thomason is very definitely still developing as a footballer. In the 80s we watched Steve Thompson develop from a callow, skinny kid who clearly had talent but could be bullied in to a seasoned midfielder who eventually thrived at Championship level with Leicester. Perhaps he played just a little too often last season and was slightly over-exposed. He certainly has facets to add to his game and the impetuousness needs to be curbed as we all know. I do think at least a little of the issue with Thomason is a lack of on-field guidance and leadership in that midfield from a wiser head. Sometimes you get the likes of Jude Bellingham who are super-talented footballers almost immediately from the minute they appear in their late teens. Others develop along a more gradual trajectory.
  15. Maybe this is where some of our problems are. However it's not just that Sheehan hasn't got the physique and defensive qualities that are often found in holding midfielders. It's also that he's another "non-talker". We have a team full of them (our captain included). When things go wrong we often drift in a paralysis, stuck in our system and playing at too slow a pace. Then Evatt starts the bingo number substitutions hoping it'll jolt us. If we can have one or two on the pitch who've been around the block a few times to talk and cajole a bit it's going to bring better management "in-game" to use a modern footballing phrase. The DM role is a good one to have that type of character in.
  16. It does make you think there's a defender leaving and the guess would be Santos. Another theory would be that he plans to use one of our existing CB's in a holding midfield role and bring a new one in. However that's the kind of thing Big Sam would do (Hierro, Campo, Faye, Warhurst), not the kind of thing IE would do.
  17. I think if we get a new CB it might release Jones/Iredale for full back duties on a far more regular basis.
  18. That probably sums it up. I think the crunch comes towards the end of September/early October if we have an average start and don't show signs of change. The trigger for mass discontent would be another lame display in a game against a perceived promotion rival or in a derby. FV would then be right on the spot. .... let's hope it doesn't come to any of that.
  19. It would be interesting if this poll was re-run in a week or two. A few who voted "go" during understandable high dudgeon following our no-show at Wembley may now have calmed and reconsidered. It's 50/50 now for the first time. No criticism of anyone. I was as cheesed off as anyone after Wembley!
  20. I'm not clear what point you are trying to make. The debate is who is the biggest Lancashire club discounting the big city sides who are plainly much bigger than the rest. These are the types of debates that can't ever reach a full objective conclusion but which are just good to yarn over, especially when there's no football about. Its the type of stuff that gets chatted over on a football forum. Get off your high horse and go and have some tea.
  21. Yes I agree but I think the basis of this debate is to discount the big city teams. None of the rest are in the same orbit, let's face it.
  22. I think the only one that could argue is Burnley. That fanbase is pretty big - disguised by a ground capacity of only 21000. Would still obviously say we are a bit bigger than them.
  23. Saved themselves late last season. Sold Wharton to Palace for a fortune to prop themselves up. They're treading water now.
  24. Too early to say with any certainty. We will have a better idea by July. Promoted and relegated sides are particularly difficult to evaluate at such an early stage in the Summer. I would tentatively say: Wigan won't break any pots, Charlton need to be taken seriously, Stevenage are in bother without Evans, Wycombe are dark horses with some renewed stability and pretty wealthy ownership.
  25. Never good to see a fanbase having to cope with problems not of their own making with an uncertain future beckoning. .... but it's Blackpool. So fuck um.
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