A visit from Football royalty, Reds hit for six, Sunday morning heartache, two well known old boys with Maryport connections drop in and the odd ex. international on the pitch are some of the talking points from the 15th January in the past…….
The visit of Burton Albion in 2000 was an eventful day to say the least with one of the quirky attractions the inclusion of former England internationals Paul Stewart and Nigel Clough who wore the number ten shirts for Reds and Albion respectively.
Both were former Liverpool and England players and their appearance as opponents in a 3rd Round FA Trophy tie at Borough Park attracted reporters from Sky and Border TV.
There was a decent crowd too with 1,041watching Reds taking on a team from the level above in the football pyramid.
Despite the attraction of two players, who had enjoyed illustrious careers, playing on opposite sides the other major talking point was a visit from Newcastle United manager, Bobby Robson, who had come to take a check on Reds in-form talent, Graham Goulding.
The former England player and manager sat with Mick Wadsworth in the ‘not-so-posh’ seats and signed plenty of autographs during his two hours at the ground.
Goulding’s audition didn’t go to plan – he sustained an injury and limped off at half time.
The match itself finished all square with Albion establishing a first half lead and Matt Henney’s second half equaliser earning Reds a deserved replay.
Back in the sixties, Workington were involved in matches against promotion favourites Bristol City and Hull City in contrasting Third Division fixtures.
It was Bristol City’s only league visit to Borough Park with Reds on a revenge mission for that 1965 game having lost 5-0 at Ashton Gate earlier in the season. Included in the City line-up was club legend, John Atyeo, but the former England international was kept quiet and it was our own number nine, Kit Napier, who scored the only goal of the match.
Twelve months later, in 1966, we were on duty at Hull City but Boothferry Park was not a happy place as we suffered a mauling from the Tigers and slumped to a painful 6-0 defeat. Cliff Britton’s side had lost by three clear goals at Borough Park so they too were hoping to avenge an earlier setback.
A crowd of 14,000 attended that match and Hull eventually finished Third Division champions, Reds a commendable fifth!
There was a slightly better outcome at Northampton Town in 1972 when we recorded our one and only success (in ten visits) to the County Ground. We won by the odd goal in three with Wayne Nicholls scoring his first league goal for the club and Johnny Martin also finding the target.
Northern Premier League results on this day have produced mixed results with four goals conceded at Lancaster City in 1979 and Eastwood Town in1989. We lost 4-1 in the former and 4-0 in a Sunday morning match at Eastwood.
The Eastwood game was part of a double header – we had played at Sutton Town on Saturday afternoon with the same team doing battle again eighteen hours later!
Workington’s best league win on this day was the 4-1 success against Leek Town at Borough Park in 2005, a match watched by two former Reds’ goal scorers – Dave Irving and Glenn Murray!
They must have been impressed with our finishing that day as we recovered from going a goal down to win comfortably. Craig Johnston scored two crackers to give Reds a half time lead with Mathew Henney and Steve Archibald netting one each after the break.
Johnston was also amongst the goals in our FA Trophy replay against Braintree Town back in 2008. But his converted penalty was merely a consolation as the Essex boys, who travelled north on the day and immediately back after the match, knocked us out 2-1.
Awaiting the winners in the next round was an away tie at National League leaders, Aldershot Town!