Steve was one of the early graduates of Tom Wally’s youth team of the late 70’s and the 1980’s. He signed as an apprentice in 1979, playing centre defence, and broke into the first team under Graham Taylo as Watford rose through the Football League in the early 80’s. Steve ended up player 160 games as a hornet and netted 14 goals before he left for Hull City in 1988. We spoke to Steve in Podcast 2.7 back in February 2012 and he gave us his story behind the headband.
I have a selection dilemma already. Three goalkeepers spring immediately to mind. Eric Steele, Steve Sherwood and Tony Coton. But I think I’ll plump for Steve Sherwood. The way he used to protect his ‘tache by saving with his legs wherever possible, was most admirable. The other two used to be more conventional and used their hands to protect the Hornets net, thus risking mud splatters and such entering the facial forest which couldn’t be good for it.
Full backs are pretty straightforward. Mick Henderson used to wear a very tidy looking number at right back. And Steve Harrison’s mischievous looking moustache suited his playful personality.
At centre back I’ve gone for the complementary pairing of the thick bushy ‘tache of Steve Sims and the slightly more trimmed Ian Bolton. In Podcast 2.7, when we inducted Steve Sims mustache into the Watford in 100 Objects list, we gave the deciding vote to former defender Steve Terry. Terry declared Sims moustache as the best at Watford FC due to the “thickness of it”. Steve revealed his namesake is now clean shaven and is “half the man without it”.
I’m opting for a 4-3-3 formation and in the midfield I am going to start with two gents of similar stature and hairstyle! Les Taylor, to this day, is the only man to captain a Watford side at the F.A.Cup final. Like you need reminding! The other curly haired midfielder to grace my XI with his hairy slug is Ray Train. I did consider Kevin Richardson for the midfield spot, but he was too wispy for my liking. Having said that, my third choice in midfield is Micah Hyde. He never wore anything full on under his nose, but this was the late nineties and his pencil ‘tache was a thing of style.
Up front, Luther also sported something akin to a pencil moustache back in the seventies, but there are three clear candidates for me. Gary Penrice didn’t get the nickname Porno for his acting qualities. That was a proper moustache. I was gutted when Jon told me he spotted him at Bristol Rovers earlier this season at the Carling Cup tie, minus face furniture. His partner up front is Gerry Armstrong. He always looked like he needed a haircut, yet the moustache was well manicured. Good on you Gerry! And Paul Wilkinson’s moustache was so prominent that it was constantly getting caught offside. In this XI, that’s a good thing! Worthy of a mention here (unusual for all time Watford XIs) is Devon White. He used to have a thin effort of a ‘tache that looked like he wanted to grow a modern handlebar, without having the balls to drop it below the lower lip. Nice try Devon, but not for the first time, not quite good enough.
We need a manager now don’t we. Well, goatees are not permitted in this line up, but this man certainly kept his moustache separate from his beard ensemble at some point during his WFC reign. And whilst he didn’t quite cut it as a manager at the second level of English football, he certainly cuts a dash style wise. So I look to Gianluca Vialli to lead our team. It’s quite a good looking line up, but even if they struggle, I’m sure we can rely on Steve Sherwood to pull off some blinding shaves
One of our most suggested items for the Watford in 100 Object list was a “Benskins Commemorative Ale” for Watford trip to the 1984 FA Cup final. We had so many email about the Benskins that if we collected them all we would probably have quite a drunken night on our hands. I’m just not sure the quality of the beer would be as high with them being well over 25 years old now.The picture above was sent to us by Nick Corble. Here’s his email:
We’ve all been there. Thumbing through a wadge of football stickers at break time hunting down the elusive sticker you want, but seeing Peter Reid’s face for the 50th time when you’ve already got him yourself at least 10 times. It was a right of passage for all young football fans back in the day. My first collection was the Panini Football 87. I never completed it all, but I did manage to get the entire Watford team including the shiny badge.
Jon, Matt Rowson, Jason and an amazing Object from Watford’s History Nobody reading this will need reminding that Watford’s first (and to-date only) foray into Europe began in Kaiserslautern in September 1983. The 1.F.C. Kaiserslautern of today are a yo-yo club in the Bundesliga, so it’s easy to forget that this was a side that […]
– Matt Rowson
Something like this might have happened at the Watford Gymkhana – Daring! An ongoing challenge facing clubs is making the most of their facilities to earn money outside match days in general and the football season in particular. It would seem that this train of thought is nothing new… In June 1927, the Watford and […]
One suspects that few of the objects to make this list will date from the nineteenth century; our club might have its origins in Henry Grover’s activities of 1881 but few of his contemporaries are around now to tell the tale, less still to testify to the right to inclusion of peculiar supporters, trinkets or […]
After a brief break to prepare for and then recover from all the Christmas and New Year festivities, we’re delighted to be able to bring you the next in the series of our ‘Watford in 100 objects’ list. This object, whilst never the height of fashion, should bring a smile to the faces of Watford fans of a certain age. Ladies and gentlemen, we bring you the limited edition, the unique, the original ‘Cool as Craig’ t-shirt.
This weeks object is The Anatomically Correct Harry The Hornet Costume from the mid-90’s. Nick Young emailed us with the idea: