Date: 7th September 2007 at 11:53pm
Written by:

So, Luciano Pavarotti has died. In the early hours of Thursday morning after a five year fight; he eventually lost his battle with cancer.

Italy is mourning the loss of one of her most famous and talented sons.

In the cathedral of his hometown of Modena, northern Italy, thousands of mourners are filing past his coffin in a bid to catch one final glimpse of the maestro; dressed, as always, in his trademark black tux and white scarf, before his funeral on Saturday.

Like it or not, Pavarotti’s music plays a large part in English footballs heritage, as although famous for his open-air concert in Hyde Park in 1991, when he performed in front of more than 100,000 people including The Prince and Princess of Wales, he is probably better known for providing the soundtrack to the video of Gazza receiving his marching orders during the World Cup semi final in Italia ’90

There have been many TV & radio shows documenting his career and discussing Luciano’s legacy in the past couple of days. Some like me, thinking back 1990 and the World Cup; Platt’s last minute goal, Gazza’s tears, missed penalties, That look Lineker gave Bobby Robson, But I think it’s time to bring the nostalgia a little closer to home.

What was happening at PO4 8RA in seasons 89/90 & 90/91? How were Pompey doing, what division were we in? Who were the idols of the Fratton End?

I had a little dig around and can offer a few tit bits…

* 14th in (the old) division two in 89/90, followed by 17th in 90/91 – Great days eh!

*Guy Whittingham scoring 9 goals in 4 games in January 91 – If Nugent is supposed to be the new Whittingham roll-on Christmas!

* Successive Zenith Data Systems cup defeats to Wimbledon & Oxford United – what happened to them? Oxford, Wimbledon or Zenith Data Systems come to that?

* Oldham winning promotion to what is now the Barclays Premiership.

*John Gregory & old Frankie Burrows as Managers.

* Martin Khul, Mark Chamberlain, Colin Clarke, John Beresford – Where are they now?

? Where does time go.

Anyway fellas your challenge, in honour of Luciano, is to provide me with what you can remember ‘of’ or ‘from’? not Italia ’90, but Pompey ’90? but a year either side will do!

Written by Chix.

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9 Replies to “Nessun dorma – Happy Memories?”

  • great article mate. i remember guy being part of a pompey side that spanked barnet 5-0 in the fa cup in the 1990/91 season – so with whittingham mentioned by yourself chix it seemed like a good time to use an image of corporal guy with my 1st thoughts in mind too…

  • RIP luciano, italia ’90 was the 1st world cup that I can remember clearly, i had seen the ’82 and ’86 world cups as a really small nipper, with ’86 being more in my mind but ’90 was the 1st one that stands out and probably the world cup I have most enjoyed since – pavarotti’s song has always had a special place for me since? as far as Pompey ’90 goes other than my above thoughts on corporal guy how about this for starters guy butters signing from spurs later in the month of october after micky hazard had been released earlier in it?

  • Remember those late 80’s far too well. In my early 20s, never missed a home game, still don’t. The bitter taste of only one season in Div 1 was still there. Thankfully it has gone now. Great song, Italia 90. oh so close. I was in a Southsea pub when we lost to the Germans. Still bitter…

  • Yes those years could have been so much better. As Matt says the 87/88 season in Div 1 was a disappointment. The club had the opportunity to move on after 10 game unbeaten spell after Xmas but players were sold none bought and the inevitable relegation followed. That meant the years Chix is covering in his excellent article were spent in the doldrums rather than in the top division.

  • Chix great idea mate, i remember the sudden signing of Gary Stevens and swearing at Mick Fillery.
    Also the emergence of Guy and Jimmy Gilligan trying to help Guy out.
    Leeds at home and snatching a 3-3 draw thanks to Corporal Punishment and Steve Bull smashing us at Wolves 5-0, what a good player he was!!
    Aspinall breaking his ankle first game of the season at Watford, how we loved fat boy.
    Remember Terry ‘sick note’ Connor promised so much delivered very little and the skilled left foot of Kenny Black, plus the promise of those kids, Symons, Anderton and Awford.
    Great memories and great times and Argentina being beaten by a penalty from Andreas Brehme, take that Argentina, how gutted were we all!!

  • Guy Whittingham was my first Pompey hero!! Army lad to goal scoring sensation only cost us a couple of hundred quid. How the game has changed!

  • My memories are quite vivid. I sponsored the match ball in April 1989 along with my greyhound V Sunderland match. I recall that it was our 13th win of the season and our only win in the last 13 games. My dog was of course none other than POMPEY GRAY hence my signature on this website. A Greyhound that wins 34 races is entitled to be remembered for time immorial. 1989 what a year for me and Pompey Gray but not a great year in general for our beloved club. Thanks for jogging my memory Chix.

  • Often wonder where people get their names from, now I know one at least … although the rug, carpet, matt, thing still makes me smile. Thanks for your comments fellas, the times in question were not great Pompey years but as with anything even not so good times carry happy memories as some of you guts have shared.

  • well rug is a nickname i was given by friends as a nipper at school – to this day many, many, many yrs later i am still not quite sure why, nor are the friends that i am still in contact with… however it stuck and basically everyone that i know knows me as rug as opposed to my actual christian name! friends, family allsorts call me rug, hence the pompeyrug username and for my business…

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