World Cup: Such a goalden day for English football

PUBLISHED: 13:18 19 May 2006 | UPDATED: 21:52 28 May 2010

MENTION 1966 to any England football fan and it conjures up images of Geoff Hurst s hat-trick, a Russian linesman and Bobby Moore holding up the World Cup to the Wembley crowd. Even to those born after the event, the 1966 World Cup is still relevant becau

MENTION 1966 to any England football fan and it conjures up images of Geoff Hurst's hat-trick, a Russian linesman and Bobby Moore holding up the World Cup to the Wembley crowd.

Even to those born after the event, the 1966 World Cup is still relevant because it marks the only time England have been crowned world champions.

We all know what happened on the Wembley pitch on July 30, 1966, but what was happening in Fenland sport during that fateful week?

Well, on the eve of the final, the Cambs Times sports pages took the opportunity to look ahead to the coming football season by profiling the players likely to figure for both Chatteris Town and March Town United.

However, the article did refer to the big game at Wembley by saying: "Tomorrow, it will all be over. Temperatures will cool and World Cup fever will have left us for another four years. Interest will return to local soccer."

The big sporting news in the Cambs Times that week was the shock resignation of March Town United's secretary-treasurer Doug Marriott.

He said: "There has been no trouble at all. I just want a complete break from football."

On the eve of the final, the Wisbech Standard reported that Wisbech Town FC were being forced to cut wages following the announcement the club had lost £3,520 over a three-year period.

The loss, announced at the club's annual meeting, came despite an increase in gate receipts of £1,750 and a donation of £62,490 over five years from the Wisbech and District Sportsmen's Club.

However, the clearest reference to the World Cup Final came, a week later, in Roger Green's "Talking Sport" column in the Wisbech Standard on August 5.

Roger wrote: "One man who will not forget the World Cup Final is Marshland referee Alan Clarke.

"He obtained a 10-match ticket through the England Supporters' Club and enjoyed every minute of it.

"On Saturday I sat with a group of Tottenham players," he told me.

"I have seen the past five FA Cup Finals but they did not compare with Saturday's game. The atmosphere was something terrific.

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