Retro Football: Charlton Narrowly Pip Sunderland In Most Exciting Play-Off Final Ever Contested, 1998 (Video)

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Quite possibly the most exciting, blistering play-off final ever witnessed atWembley took place, 19 years ago to this very day.

Sunderland-born Clive Mendonca scored a famous hat-trick (the first ever in a play-off final) against his hometown team as Charlton Athletic squeezed their way into the Premier League via a synapse-fraying penalty shoot-out.

Bradford City: Remembering The Victims Of The Valley Parade Fire, 32 Years On From That Dreadful Day (Photos & Video)

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Today marks the 32nd anniversary of the tragic day, 11th May 1985, on which a fire gutted the Main Stand and Valley Parade mid-way through Bradford City's final game of the Division Three season.

56 people 54 Bradford fans and two Lincoln City supporters lost their lives and over 250 were injured as the flames swept through the wooden structure after debris underneath the terracing caught light.

Retro Football: Johan Cruyff Discusses Dennis Bergkamp, The Notion Of Greatness And The Perfect Footballer, 1994 (Video)

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Photo: PROSHOTS (via Goal)

On the day of his 48th birthday, we can't help but hark back to the highest praise Dennis Bergkamp ever received, and from Johan Cruyff no less.

Shortly before the 1994 World Cup, Cruyff gave an in-depth interview to Hugo Camps for Het Laatste Nieuws, in which shared his thoughts on a wide array of footballing issues.

Retro Football: Alan Ball Drops Monumental Clanger That Sees Man City Relegated From Top Flight, 1996 (Video)

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'Twas on this day in 1996 that Man City manager Alan Ball suffered a fateful instance ofnominative determinism by dropping a bollock so dense and decisive that it ultimately saw his side jettisonedfrom what was then known as the Premiership.

Having left Southampton in slightly acrimonious circumstances to take over at City the summer previous, cruel fate subsequently ensured that Ball found himself vying against his old team as the 1995/96 relegation battle went down to the wire.

Galactico Gold: Guti Plays In Zidane With Exquisite Back-Heel Through Ball As Real Madrid Spank Sevilla, 2006 (Video)

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The year was 2006, and with mid-January temperatures ebbing down towards freezingand a light flurry of snow in the air conditionsdescribed by Elmundo Deportes as an "unpleasant night for a very attractive party" Real Madrid, in full 'Galactico' pomp, welcomed Sevilla to the Bernabeu.

It took the hosts just six minutes to open the scoringwhen Guti wafted into the 18-yard box to steer a low Zinedine Zidane cross past Andres Palop.

Retro Football: Steve Palmer Wears Every Single Watford Squad Number In Space Of One Season, 1997/98 (Photo & Video)

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Having started the 1997/98 season on the bench, Watford defenderSteve Palmer was gradually pressed into service all over the pitch as Graham Taylor's Hornets set about hauling themselves up and out of Division Two.

Indeed, such was hisutility that Palmer began racking up an impressive collection of shirt numbers Football League squad numbering not being mandatory as it is today.

Classic Moments: Jamie Pollock Paints His Masterpiece With Majestic Own-Goal Against QPR, 1998 (Video)

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You may not be aware, but today marks the anniversary of one of the most significant matches in the entire 154-year history of association football.

Manchester City 2-2 Queens Park Rangers April 25th, 1998.

Knowing full well that a win and a win alone couldprevent their relegation to the third tier, Man City (21st in the league) met fellow stragglers QPR (22nd) in the penultimate game of the First Division season.

Retro Football: Graeme Souness Plants His Enormous Galatasaray Flag In Fenerbahce’s Centre Circle, 1996 (Video)

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We can scarcely believe it, but it's now 21 years to the very day that Graeme Souness became an eternalGalatasarayfolkhero by driving their club colours into the centre circle at Fenerbahce's stadium.

Having been out of work for over a year, Souness took charge at Gala for the 1995/96 season and promptly guided the side to a fairly disappointing fourth-place finish in the Super Lig, or 1.

Retro Football: Referee Causes Uproar By Allowing ‘Offside’ Jeff Astle Goal And Costing Leeds The First Division Title, 1971 (Video)

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Almost exactly 46 years ago this very day, a refereeing decision sparkeduproar at Elland Road when a controversial offside call (or lack thereof) effectively served to derail Leeds' title tilt.

Desperatelychasingthe win to stay in contention with Arsenal at the top of the table going into the last few games of the 1970/71 season, Leeds found themselves2-1 down against West Bromwhen Jeff Astle scored on the break despite the linesman flagging wildly from the touchline.

Retro Football: Jeremy Clarkson Attends His Very First Football Match – Doncaster Rovers vs Frickley Athletic, 1998 (Video)

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Photos: Getty Images/Press Association

Filminga segment forhis short-lived eponymous chat show, Jeremy Clarkson broke his duck and attended his very first football match in 1998.

Indeed, the Top Gear host paid a visit to his hometown club, Doncaster Rovers (bottom of the Conference at the time), to take in their FA Trophy tie against Frickley Athletic at Belle Vue in deepest, darkest November.

Retro Football: Arsenal Hero David Rocastle Scores Immaculate Solo Goal Against Man Utd, 1991 (Video)

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Seeing as though today marksthe 16th anniversary of David Rocastle's untimely passing, we thought it'd only be right to once again pay tribute to one of English football's most sorely-missed characters.

Despite having terrible eyesight, Rocky was one heck of a player skillful, nimble and intelligent both on and off the ball.

Retro Thuggery: Velez Sarsfield Keeper Gaston Sessa Plants Studs In Rodrigo Palacio’s Face, Can’t Fathom Why He’s Been Sent Off, 2007 (Video)

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In the grandest tradition of South American goalkeepers, former Velez Sarsfield stopper Gaston Sessa was laced with just a soupçon of thinly-concealed lunacy.

On a related note, he's also the man responsible for one of the worst fouls ever seen on a football pitch, having once almost reduced Rodrigo Palacio's face to a plate of blood-spattered mince.

Retro Football: Young Roberto Martinez Demonstrates How To Defend Against Long Throw-Ins, 1996 (Video)

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Photo: Press Association

Having pioneered a slew of innovative systems with Everton (the 'hopelessly isolated frontman' and the 'hideously exposed flat back two' instantly spring to mind) in recent years, it's largely agreed that Roberto Martinez is one of football's greatest tactical minds.

RIP Ronnie Moran: 15 Belting Vintage Photos Of ‘Mr Liverpool’ In His Pomp

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The sad news doing the rounds this morning is that Ronnie Moran, bona fide Liverpool club legend, has passed away at the age of 83.

Moran joined the Reds as a 15-year-old in 1949 and duly spent his entire playing career at the club, making 379 appearances, many of which as captain.

He then moved intocoaching at the behest of Bill Shankly, thus forming part of the iconic 'Boot Room Boys' alongside Shanks, Bob Paisley, Joe Fagan and Reuben Bennett.

Andy Townsend Recalls Moment He Attempted To Console Gareth Southgate After Euro ’96 Penalty Miss, Only To Be Upstaged By Liam Gallagher (Video)

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With England set to take on Germany on Wednesday night, the chatter in the BBC 5Live studio inevitably turned to manager Gareth Southgate's most well-trodden previous dalliancewith Die Mannshaft.

We are of course talking about the semi-finals of Euro '96, wherein Southgate fluffedthe crucial penalty to send the Germans through to the final.

Retro Football: Ronaldinho Scores First Ever Goal For Brazil (Assisted By Cafu) Against Venezuela, 1999 (Video)

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Ronaldinho is turning 37 years young today, so we thought we'd offer a simple tribute by traipsing right back to the far end of the Brazilian virtuoso's career.

The year was 1999, and theSelecao were playing Venezuela in their opening matchof the Copa America.

With Brazil already 4-0 up, a scrawny young bag of bones entered the fray in the 70th minute and promptly opened his international goal-scoring account just four minutes later.

Retro Football: Presenting The Worst Goal Man Utd Have Ever Scored, Against Sheff Wed In 1991 (Video)

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Despite the best efforts of Paul Warhurst to gift them the win, Manchester United ended up losing 3-2 against Sheffield Wednesday in what might loosely be described as a 'thriller' at Hillsborough in October of 1991.

Having gone1-0 down to an early David Hirst strike, it didn't take long for United to restore parity less than two minutes in fact, thanks to Warhurst's superbly weighted through-ball to Brian McClair.

Retro Football: Giovanni Trapattoni’s Immortal Bayern Munich Mega-Rant Is 19 Years Old Today (Video)

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Amazingly, it's now 19 years to the very day that Giovanni Trapattoni unleashed holy hell on the Bayern Munichpress room in 1998, embarking on a now infamous rant about the lapse attitude of some of his players.

The three-minute diatribe has worked its way into popular culture in Germany due to the fact that, riled upand unable to express himself fluently in a second language, Trap ended up raving in broken German with an Italian accent.

The Black-And-White Years: 20 Cracking Vintage Photos Of Women’s Football

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In honour of it being International Women's Day, Pies have delved into the archive to bring you some fascinating photos of ladies' football in its infancy.

Let's dive in, shall we...

The British Ladies Football Club play their first ever match, 1895

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A shot is attempted during the Theatrical Ladies football match at White Hart Lane, 1912

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Girls from the Oxford Revue prepare for a charity football match, 1914.

Classic Moments: Roy Makaay Takes 10 Seconds To Score Fastest Goal In Champions League History (Video)

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Worrying as it may be, it's now a decade to the day that Roy Makaay came rampaging out of the traps to score what is still the fastest goal in Champions League and European Cup history.

The craggy Dutchstriker dawdledfor a whole10.12 seconds before slidingBayern Munich ahead against Real Madrid at the Allianz Arena on 7th March, 2007.

Shit Football Kits: Brighton & Hove Albion Pair Stripy Shirt With Matching Stripy Shorts, 1991-93 (Photo)

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By and large, Brighton & Hove Albion have been playing in blue and white stripes for well over 100 years some 113 years to be exact.

In that time, only once did theSeagulls venture to extend their famous two-tone livery south of the waistband, and now we know why.

During the giddy halcyon days of the early 1990s, Brighton bashed out a home strip that coupled a stripy shirt with matchingstripy shorts.

Retro Football: Leeds Pin-Up Vinnie Jones Models For Top Man, 1989 (Photo)

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Pin-up in waiting: Vinnie Jones during his Wimbledon days

Having made his name at the thinking man's nutcase at Wimbledon, Vinnie Jones made the leap to Leeds United before the1989/90 season.

Jones arrived amida frenetic £2million summer spending frenzy that saw manager Howard Wilkinson splurge on the likes of Mel Sterland, John Hendrie and Jim Beglin.

Classic Moments: John O’Shea Keeps Clean Sheet After Going In Goal For Manchester United, 2007 (Photo & Video)

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Dear fellows, would you believe that it's ten years to the very day that the very complexionof Association Football changed forever?

Indeed, at White Hart Lane on 4th February of 2007,we collectively witnessed a spectacular event that shifted the paradigmentirely.

We are of course talking about when Edwin van der Sar broke his nose and John O'Shea Slayer of Figo had to goin nets for Manchester United.

Pies Classics: Harry Redknapp Defends 17-Year-Old Frank Lampard From Snarky West Ham Fan (Video)

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With Frank Lampard annoucing his retirement today we thought we'd revisit a classic clip from the other end of his long and storied career.

Back in 1996, while schmoozing with fans at a conference,then-West Ham manager Harry Redknapp suddenly found himselfforced to defend the ruddy-cheeked 17-year-old sitting next to him.

Retro Football: Original Artist’s Plans For Bolton’s Reebok Stadium Were Quite Something, 1994 (Photo)

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Burnden Park, as was (Photo: Legendary Football Grounds)

The year was 1994, and upwardly mobile Bolton Wanderers were preparing to up sticks and leave Burnden Park, their home forthe past 100 years, and into a new, all-singing, all-dancing and most importantly all-seater modern stadium.

Retro Football: 19-Year-Old Steven Gerrard Scores His Very First Goal For Liverpool, 1999 (Video)

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Having made his senior debut almost exactly a year previous, 19-year-old Steven Gerrard finally got off the mark for Liverpool in a 4-1 thrashing ofbottom side Sheffield Wednesday in December of 1999.

On what was a bitterly cold afternoon at Anfield, Gerrard only starting due to a raft of injuries in Gerard Houllier's midfield ranks finally reintroduced blood to the extremities of the 40,000-odd Reds fans in attendance when the local lad from down the roadwent a-waltzing through the Wednesday defence to score his very first goal for the club.

Retro Football: Hideously Ugly Goalmouth Scramble Sees Man City Rescue Dramatic FA Cup Draw Against Blackpool, 1988 (Video)

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Paul Lake of Manchester City (Photo: MEN)

There were almost two full divisions between the sides when Man City travelled up to Bloomfield Road for anFA Cup fourth round tie against Blackpool in January of 1988.

Still, it was the Seasiders who drew first blood when young striker Richard Sendall – who had been told he was free to leave the club on a free transfer the week previous scored to put the Third Division side ahead.

Retro Football: Uri Geller Claims To Move Ball As Gary McAllister Misses Penalty Against England At Euro ’96 (Video)

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It was the 15th of June, 1996, and England were playing Scotland at Wembley in their second group match of the European Championships.

As you may remember, the host nation went on to win 2-0on the day: Alan Shearer, Paul Gascoigne, Colin Hendry getting trapped in a prismic maze of his own mind's making, the dentist's chair.

Retro Football: Blackburn Teammates David Batty And Graeme Le Saux Have A Punch-Up, 1995 (Video)

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Before Leicester City stormed the grand UEFA citadel, you have to go right back to 1995 for the last time a "small" Premier League sidefound their way into the Champions League.

Thankfully, reigning champions Blackburn Rovers did the nation proud by finishing slap, bang, bottom of their group and crashing out at the first hurdle.

Kits & fashion

Celtic: Suave New Home Kit Pays Homage To Lisbon Lions On 50th Anniversary Of Famous European Cup Triumph (Photos)

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Photos: Celtic FC

To mark the 50th anniversary of the European Cup being won by a British club for the very first time, Celtic have used their new 2017/18 home kit to pay homage to their most veneratedline-up, The Lisbon Lions.

The Lions, all but one of whom were born within 10 miles of Celtic Park, beat Inter Milan in the 1967 European Cup final in Portugal to complete an unprecedented quintuple of trophies.

Reports: Newcastle United ‘Hold Talks’ Over Return Of Iconic 1990s Shirt Sponsor

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Fantastic news for anybody permanently living in the past i.e, all Newcastle fans with the word on the wire being that the club are "in talks" with Newcastle Brown Ale to reinstate the brewery as their principal shirt sponsor.

The iconic big blue star graced the Newcastle kitthroughout the 1980s and into the mid-to-late 1990s, featuring prominently during the club's last flush of success.


Puma Re-Release Iconic ‘Super Atom’ Boot, 65 Years After Original Design Was Put Into Production (Photos)

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Rudolf Dassler (left) demonstrates the new Super Atom, 1952 (Photo: Puma)

The Super Atoms were the first ever football boots to feature screw-in studs when they were originally produced in 1952.

As designedby Puma founder Rudolf Dassler, the Super Atom was developed in collaboration with an array of experts including Sepp Herberger, who was West Germany's national coach at the time.

RIP Raymond Kopa: 20 Magnifique Photos Of The France And Real Madrid Legend In His Prime

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European football has lost two legendary figures in the space of two days.

Following the sad news that Celtic stalwart Tommy Gemmell, a key member of theLisbon Lions, died yesterday, itwas announced earlier today that the great Raymond Kopa has passed away at the age of 85.

Kopa is a footballing monument in France, having been the first Frenchman to win the Ballon d'Or and the first Frenchman to lift the European Cup, a feat he repeated three times during the three seasonshe spent as part of Real Madrid's celestialmid-to-late 1950s side Di Stefano, Puskas, Gento, etc.

Muckers: Brilliant Image Surfaces Of Burnley Teammates Robbie Brady And Jeff Hendrick Together At Boyhood Club (Photo)

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Over the course of the season so far, Burnley's dabbling in the transfer market has finally brought togethertwo of football's oldest muckers reunited at Turf Moor.

Indeed, Burnleybroke their transfer record to bring in Robbie Brady on deadline day, thus reunitingthe Irish midfielder with boyhood teammate Jeff Hendrick.

The Black-And-White Years: 15 Brilliant Vintage Photos Of England’s Age Auld Rivalry With Scotland

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In deepest, darkest November of 1872, England played Scotland in the first ever official international football match at the Hamilton Crescent cricket ground in Partick.

A crowd of 4,000 spectators paid a shilling apiece to watch the match finish goalless.There's more here.

The two nations had actually played each other fives time previous, but FIFA refuse to acknowledge those early games as full internationals as all five of the Scotland teams were merely made up of players draftedfrom the London area.

English Premier League

Ali Dia: Journalist Successfully Manages To Track Down Elusive Cult Hero, 20 Years After Legendary Southampton Debut

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Despite only ever playing less than an hour oftop flight football, there can be no doubt that Ali Dia is a Premier League legend in the truest sense of the word.

For the uninitiated (presuming there are any), Dia was signed by Graeme Sounness in 1996 after the shrewd Southampton manager received a personal tip-off from Dia's cousin, the similarly legendary George Weah, that the unknownSenegal forward, currently playing in the local non-leagues,was well worth a gamble.

Retro Football: ‘Table Of Shame’ Shows Ticket Prices For Inaugural Premier League Season, 1992/93 (Photo)

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The BBC have once again published the results of their annual 'Price of Football' study, which largely serves to prove that periodically rafflingoff visceral organs is the only way most fans can afford to watch their team play anymore.

That said, this year's study has found that almost two-third of ticket prices across the UK have either been frozen or reduced proving, at least in part, that some club's are trying to address the spiralling cost.

The Rest

‘You Told Me One Day You’d Win!’ – Youri Djorkaeff Congratulates Henrikh Mkhitaryan On Europa League Triumph By Sharing Childhood Photo Of Man Utd Matchwinner

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After scoring the acrobatic goal that effectively sealed Manchester United's Europa League win, Henrikh Mkhitaryan passed a personal milestone.

Indeed, the 28-year-old Armenian forward won his very first European title a fate that was promised to him long ago by none other than Youri Djorkaeff.

‘It Was Surreal To Be Honest!’ – Robbie Fowler Recalls The Time He Somehow Ended Up On Real Madrid’s Title-Winning Bus Parade

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Robbie Fowler turned out forseveral clubs in his time, having enjoyed stints of varying success atLiverpool, Leeds United, Man City, Cardiff City,Blackburn Rovers, North Queensland Fury, Perth Glory and, most famously, Muangthong United of Thailand.

He did not however, represent Real Madrid at least not intentionally anyway.

10 Players Who Have Scored One Goal In Just One Appearance For England

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Plenty of perfectly decent players have only managed to score once for England over the years, with the likes of Andy Cole, David Hirst, Rodney Marsh, Alan Mullery, Stan Bowles and Carlton Palmer all failing to double their tally over the varying courses of their respective international careers.

However, there are a select band of England internationals who went one better, by scoring on their debut for the Three Lions and then leaving their immaculate 1:1 ratio completely untainted by failing to win a second cap.