It’s guest blog time again and today is the return of a familiar voice to all those who frequent MFW – Mr Alex Bain.
I’ll let him explain…
As the curtain descends on another all-too-predictable failure to establish ourselves in the Premier League I thought I’d take a personal journey back over my years of actively following NCFC by focussing on one of a couple of areas where we’ve been sadly lacking this season – strikers.
Names come to mind like our all-time leading goalscorer Johnny Gavin, who between 1948-54 and 1955-59, played 338 games and scored 132 goals. He never settled at Spurs and returned when then Tottenham manager Bill Nicholson wanted a centre-half to build his defence around and did a swap for our Maurice Norman.
This list will miss out on many that didn’t reach double figures or weren’t around long enough to really make a mark. As an aside, two of those came from Crewe. Ashley Ward regretted leaving during the Chase firesale but Dean Ashton couldn’t get away quick enough for the bright lights of London Lights – and the megabucks of West Ham.
So here is my list and it’s one to test the collective MFW memory bank and that’s for sure:
- Terry Allcock – 389 games and 127 goals between 1958 and 1969.
- Jimmy Hill – 195 games, 55 goals. 1959 to 1963, Sold to Everton for £25k.
- Tommy Bryceland – 284 games. 55 goals. 1962-69. Released on a free to Oldham.
- Ron Davies -113 games, 58 goals. 1963-65. Sold to Southampton for £55k.
- Hugh Curran – 112 games, 46 goals. 1966-69. Sold to Wolves.
- Peter Silvester – 113 games, 37 goals. 1969-74. Departed on a free to Colchester.
- David Cross – 106 games, 30 goals. 1971-73. Sold to Coventry £150k.
- Ted McDougall – 112 games, 51 goals. 1973-77, Sold to Southampton for £50k. Would Ted have been as prolific without his sidekick also signed from Bournemouth [see below]?
- Phil Boyer – 116 games, 34 goals. 1974-77, sold to Southampton £130k. Surely would have scored many more if he was more greedy. He laid on so many for SuperTed.
- Kevin Reeves – 133 games, 42 goals. 1976-80. Sold to Manchester City for £1m. He never wanted to leave but was told the club needed the money.
- Justin Fashanu – 103 games, 40 goals. 1978-81. Sold to Notts Forest for £1m.
- Keith Bertschin -114 games, 29 goals 1981-85. Went to Stoke on a free. Ex-Ipswich!
- John Deehan – 199 games, 70 goals 1981-86. Later managed City, Milk Cup winner.
- Mick Channon – 112 games, 25 goals 1982-85. Milk Cup winner and racehorse trainer!
- Kevin Drinkell – 150 games, 57 goals 1985-88. Sold to Rangers for £600k.
- Robert Fleck – 299 games, 84 goals 1987-92 and 1995-98. Sold to Chelsea for £2.1m and fell out with the club as he pushed for a move that never worked out but made amends on his return.
- Chris Sutton -127 games, 43 goals 1991-95. Sold to Blackburn £5m. Said he wanted to end his career at City but that didn’t happen.
- Jamie Cureton -108 games, 23 goals 1994-96, 2007-10. Still playing at the age 46 for Enfield!
- Iwan Roberts – 306 games, 96 goals 1996 to 2003. What a warrior! Sadly he was never given the chance to reach the 100 mark after being released by Nigel Worthington. Too early, some might say.
- Paul McVeigh – 246 games, 40 goals 2000-07 and 2009-10 and a great recruit from Spurs.
- Darren Huckerby – 203 games, 48 goals 2003-08. He will always be a supporters’ favourite and another not given the chance to score more and a very bad manager’s choice to let him go. [Hucks wasn’t strictly an out-and-out striker but we weren’t prepared to leave him off the list – Ed].
- Chris Martin – 117 games, 34 goals 2006-13. Often maligned wherever he’s played but always puts in a shift and scores goals.
- Grant Holt – 168 games, 78 goals 2009-13. Bryan Gunn may not be fondly remembered for his short time as manager but he did recruit this icon from Shrewsbury!
- Cameron Jerome – 138 games, 42 goals 2014-18. Still playing at 34. Maybe he was let go too soon and could have been a good partner for the last on my list:
- Teemu Pukki – 142 games 72 goals 2018 to present. Let’s hope there are many more goals to come but however, this wretched season ends he has proved a bargain signing for City.
So that’s the end of my personal list. If I’ve missed anybody, please let me know!