Regular reader Keith Ballantyne wanted to know which Coventry City players had played in the World Cup Finals whilst at the club. He thought Tommy Hutchison was the first but wonders how many others there are.
Keith is correct about Hutch – he represented Scotland at the 1974 finals in West Germany and made two appearances, both from the bench, against Zaire and Yugoslavia. Four years later he wasn't included in the Scotland squad that went to Argentina, despite having an outstanding domestic season. Ian Wallace and Bobby McDonald were also surprisingly omitted but goalkeeper Jim Blyth was part of the squad but didn't appear.
Since then the following City players have made appearances whilst with the club:
1994 (USA): Phil Babb (Ireland) and Roy Wegerle (USA)
1998 (France): Viorel Moldovan (Romania)
2002 (Japan/S Korea): Gary Breen (Ireland) and Magnus Hedman (Sweden)
2006 (Germany): Stern John (Trinidad & Tobago)
In 1998 Gary McAllister would have gone to France as captain of Scotland but wasn't fit and the same year Dion Dublin who was joint winner of the Premier League's Golden Boot, was unfortunate to be left out of Glen Hoddle's final 22 having won three caps in the warm-up games.
I have recently been involved in a project run by the National Football Museum to find the Oldest living Football league players.
I received the results this week and former Coventry player Colin Collindridge has been confirmed as the sixth oldest.
Colin, who was born in Barnsley, joined Sheffield United as an 18-year old in 1939 but lost the best years of his career to World War II. After the war he was one of the top players in the league, top scoring for Sheffield United three seasons running as either a left winger or centre-forward. In 1950 he joined Nottingham Forest and helped them to the Division Three North title in his first season, playing alongside Tommy Capel. Jack Fairbrother signed him and Capel for Coventry in 1954 but the man renowned for his terrific speed and fierce shooting had lost his pace and his eye for goal. In 1956, after 35 games and three goals he moved to Bath City on a free transfer. He has lived in Nottingham for many years.
The eight oldest living Football League players are listed below. Number 8 is interesting; Dudley Kernick was manager of Nuneaton Borough at the time of their great FA Cup successes in 1967 and also was on the coaching staff at Highfield Road during the Jimmy Hill era.
1. Arthur Hoyle Smith. (Bury & Leicester 14 apps). DoB 8.5.1915. Age 101yrs 10 months.
2. George Haigh. (Stockport 7 apps). DoB. 3Q 1915. Age 101yrs 4 months approx.
3. Cyril William Bacon. (Orient. 121 apps). DoB 9.11.1919. Age 97.4.
4. George Stewart. (Brentford, QPR, Shrews. 74 apps). DoB 18.1.1920. Age 97.2.
5. Joe Johnson (Lincoln & Workington. 52 apps) DoB 13.9.1920. Age 96.7.
6. Colin Collindridge. (Sheff U, Forest, Coventry. 343 apps) DoB 15.11.1920. Age 96.4.
7. Thomas Hubert Best (Chester, Cardiff, QPR). 81 apps). DoB 23.12.1920. Age 96.3.
8. Dudley Kernick. (Torquay 41 apps.) DoB 29.8.1921. Age 95.6.
To all my readers – have a great day out at Wembley tomorrow. It's been a long wait to return there and let's hope it's not another 30 years before we are back.