Saturday, October 28, 2006

My First Heed Game: Private Smith

The first Gateshead game I attended was a pre-season friendly against the main football love of my life Newcastle United on the 10th August 1978.
The new Gateshead FC were one year old and after opening the previous season with a friendly against league opposition in the shape of Lawrie McMenemy’s Southampton, it was the turn of the Magpies this time round.Newcastle were making there debut at The Stadium, for this warm-up game, fresh from a bitterly disappointing season which ended in relegation to the 2nd Division.

It was standing room only, as the old main stand was full, so I took my place behind the goal at the ‘Byker End’ of the ground in a crowd of just over 3,000 and witnessed a scrappy encounter which was eventually settled by a late goal from(according to the records) Ralph Callaghan, even though I always thought Tommy Cassidy had scored, and I had made a note of this in the match programme.

The match was refereed by legendary local whistler Pat Partridge, who had spend the summer working in Argentina for the ’78 World Cup, and amongst the line up making his ‘debut’ former Gateshead United favourite Les Mutrie who was making a welcome return to The Tynesider’s, and a young 18 year old lad recently signed from Redheugh Boys Club called Peter Harrison, the side Ray Wilkie sent out that night was:

1.Dick Patterson
2.Fred McIver
3.Ray Coulson
4.Tony Rosethorn
5.Peter Harrison
6.Bob McLeod
7.Steve Holbrook
8.Ken Brown

9.Les Mutrie
10.Kevin Matthews
11.Kenny Heslop

Alex Welsh
Tom Hendrie
Hartley Maddison

A big Thank You to Private Smith for his My First Heed Game Story

(Shaun Smith on the right in this photo)

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