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The First Time Ever I Saw Your Ground: Bolton Wanderers, Burnden Park and the Macron

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John McCormick writes: every footballer and fan should be honoured to visit a club like Bolton Wanderers but I’ve never been there. I’ll be remedying that on Tuesday, however, so if my former OU colleague Brian (a diehard Wanderer who will surely relish the magic and nostalgia of Pete Sixmith‘s prose) fancies a pre match pint […]

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The First Time Ever I Saw Your Ground: Bristol City and Ashton Gate

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John McCormick writes: I hitched to quite a few games – including some at Roker Park – and I do remember going down the M5 in a Reliant Robin when it (the M5, not the car) was a two-lane motorway. I still believe its  front wheel (the car’s, not the M5’s) left the ground when we went […]

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The First Time Ever I Saw Your Ground: Birmingham City and St Andrews

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Pete Sixsmith’s legendary journey around the years continues with a trip to England’s second city and 1976. That was the year the queen went to Birmingham to open the National Exhibition Centre but she doesn’t post anything on this site (at least, not under her own name) so we won’t be getting her reminiscences. As […]

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The First Time Ever I Saw Your Ground: (part 2) Cardiff City and the Eponymous Stadium

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John McCormick writes: after 1971-2 it was another 30 years before I returned to Cardiff. This time I drove there and stayed in decent hotels (you know, the kind with heating and showers). Cardiff had changed from the solemn, somnolent city I remembered. Now it was full of partygoers engaging in drunkenness and sin. But […]

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The First Time Ever I Saw Your Ground: (part 1) Cardiff City’s Ninian Park

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John McCormick writes: I made it down to Cardiff in 1971 or 2, via the Heads of the Valleys Road, one or more pubs in Aberdare and Tonypandy’s Pandy Inn, but in February 1972, where Pete resumes his travelogue, I was half-way through my undergraduate career and finding respite from academic life (mine involved the […]

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The First Time Ever I Saw Your Ground: Nottingham Forest and the City Ground

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John McCormick writes: I’ve sort of begun a tradition within this series, of adding material, especially video, that Pete Sixsmith hasn’t come up with himself, although he has provided some great photos. I was setting this one up in advance, hoping as I did so that Pete would include something I could use to keep […]

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The First Time Ever I Saw Your Ground: Sheffield United.

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John McCormick writes: on Saturday Ed posted on his facebook page that it had been 378 days since he’d seen us win and then headed off to the SOL. Now you know who to blame. But you can’t fault his loyalty. Stony broke, he and a mate once hitched down to Bramall Lane for an […]

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The First Time Ever I Saw Your Ground: the company of Wolves

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Malcolm Dawson writes……the last time I went to Wolves, if I remember rightly, Stephen Elliot equalised with about 10 minutes to go and it was the last time I was seriously worried for my personal safety at a football match. I had arranged to go with a female friend of mine who had been born […]

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The first time ever I saw your ground: Burton Albion and the Pirelli Stadium

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John McCormick writes Burton is one of those places you’re not likely to visit by accident if you live in Liverpool. It’s in between everywhere – to the east and north of the M6 and A5, to the south of the road between Stoke, Derby and Nottingham. It is, just about, on the way from […]

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The First Time Ever I Saw Your Ground: Aston Villa and Villa Park

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John McCormick writes: I suspected this would be one of the grounds that Pete Sixsmith counts among his favourites. After all, not only  is it old and venerable, like the man himself,  with international matches and semi-finals galore on its cv, it has the Archibald Leitch connection that he relishes. And there’s a bonus for […]

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Sunderland vs Portsmouth Who are You? ‘We should be runaway favourites by now’

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Monsieur Salut writes: Peter Allen is my very good pal and partner-in-crime (if that’s the right way to describe our […]

Sunderland vs Portsmouth: a question of points no longer in our hands

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Even as I wrote last week that we would remain masters of our destiny and go up automatically provided we […]

Sixer’s Soapbox: Peterborough make their point against Sunderland

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John McCormick is editing this in Liverpool, where one of the clubs could win the Champions League, not to mention […]

Sixer’s Peterborough sevens. Bitterly disappointing

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Is there another twist to come? With only two or three games left time is not on our side, and […]

Sunderland vs Portsmouth ‘Who are You?’: a buildup that began in December

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THIS interview, from just before our 3-1 defeat at Fratton Park in December, was among many items lost when the […]

Jim Baxter: Dave Parnaby’s Appreciation

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Pete Sixsmith provides the introduction to today’s guest: Dave Parnaby is a Kelloe lad who started following Sunderland in the […]

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