Programme of the Week – Crystal Palace vs Watford 9th October 1963
Programme of the Week – Crystal Palace vs Watford 9th October 1963
The latest in a series about football programmes from my collection that relate to a game being played in the next few days.
Crystal Palace vs Watford 2019 / 2020
This week, in the Premier League, Crystal Palace and Watford meet at Selhurst Park in a vital game for both sides. Last weekend, Watford ended the unbeaten league run of champions elect, Liverpool. This lifted them out of the bottom three, albeit Aston Villa did not play.
The same day, Palace had won 1-0 away at Brighton and Hove Albion, in the so called M23 derby. This lifted Crystal Palace to 36 points and up to 12th in the table. Surely a win in this weekend’s game will consolidate the Eagles in the top half of the table 12 points above the drop zone.
For Watford, 3 points keeps them moving slowly up the table. They will be interested in matches at Anfield; The Emirates; Bramall Lane and Molineux, where relegation rivals Bournemouth, West Ham; Norwich and Brighton, respectively, have tricky fixtures.
This season relegation battle has drawn in those six teams and is sure to go down to the wire.
Crystal Palace vs Watford 9th October 1963
The two teams meet in the old Division Three (League One) and we are eleven games into the season. Crystal Palace are currently fifth on 14 points (still 2 for a win in those days) three points behind the early leaders Oldham Athletic.
Watford are three points back in a group of clubs all on eleven points. They are twelfth on goal difference, immediately behind Colchester United and just ahead of Brentford. Palace have won all their home games so far, except for the previous week’s 1-1 draw with Luton Town.
It’s a Wednesday night and kick off is 7.30 pm. The referee is Mr D.H. Howell of Birmingham. In later life, Denis Howell was Minister for Sport in Labour Governments between 1964 and 1970. He was Minister for Sport again between 1974 and 1979. In 1976 he was made Minister for Drought (nicknamed Minister for Rain) during Britain’s driest summer for over 200 years.
For several seasons, Crystal Palace produced pocket sized match programmes 10.5cm by 14cm. The programme has 20 pages and costs sixpence.
The cover of the programme is white. On the front is the Crystal Palace club emblem, with, somewhat superfluously, the club’s name again, underneath. On the back cover is a map of how to get to Selhurst Park, by car bus and train. This is still a challenge to many of us today!
The inside front cover has adverts and page three carries details of Club Officials and forthcoming fixtures.
Page four is entitled Personality Parade and the spotlight is on Ron Chopper Harris. Interestingly, the feature suggests that Ron will challenge for a place in the 1966 World Cup Squad. But he never played for England.
Club notes are on page 5. They discuss the last match at Port Vale and Tottenham Hotspur’s shift to a 4-2-4 formation. Pages six and seven welcome the visitors, with pen pictures and a full page squad photo.
On pages eight and nine, there is a report on the Junior’s Tour to Amsterdam in June 1963.
The centre pages list the two teams for the game. I acquired this programme in a batch of Watford home and away programmes in 2000. The original owner meticulously noted any team changes; the scores and scorers; and put his own neat performance scores (out of ten) for each player and the ref. He also included, with each programme, at least one newspaper match report covering each game.
I have found it a fascinating archive.
Crystal Palace vs Watford 9th October 1963 – The Teams
We will select our main men below; but as ever there are plenty to choose from. The Palace team includes George Petchey; Ronnie Allen; Cliff Holton and Dickie Dowsett. In Watford’s ranks that day are Terry Mancini; Charlie Livesey and George Harris.
Page twelve has Supporters Club Notes and away match coach travel details. Page thirteen is a full page advert for Stanley Matthews Football Boots!
On Pages fourteen and fifteen, there is a feature about Palace forwards Peter Burridge’s ‘Most Exciting Match’. Page sixteen is the League Tables to date for Division Three and the Football Combination. Fixtures and results are on page seventeen and on page eighteen are details of matches since the last programme and away ticket information.
The inside back cover is an advert for Philips radio and TV.
Crystal Palace vs Watford 9th October 1963 – The Main Men
I want to focus on the two goalkeepers in this match, as our Main Men. Crystal Palace’s keeper is Bill Glazier. Glazier would be ever-present this season, having replaced Welsh International Vic Rouse in the side. He makes 113 appearances for Palace between 1961 and 1964. In 1964, Jimmy Hill signs him for Coventry City for a goalkeeping world record fee of £35,000.
Bill Glazier makes 392 appearances for Coventry City across 11 seasons and represents England at U23 level 3 times in the 1964 / 1965 season. He never conceded a goal while representing England.
At the opposite end of the pitch is 18-year-old Pat Jennings. Two years earlier, Jennings had left Gaelic Football and joined his hometown side Newry Town. He joined Watford this season and it will be his only season at the club. After 48 appearances Jennings is sold for £27,000 to Tottenham Hotspur.
At the end of this season Pat Jennings makes his International Debut for Northern Ireland. He represents them for 22 seasons and wins 119 caps – a Northern Ireland record. His final game was against Brazil in the 1986 World Cup, a 0-3 defeat.
Crystal Palace vs Watford 9th October 1963 – The Outcome
Let’s deal with the match itself first. In front of 16,913 Palace win 2-0. This was how respected journalist Laurie Pignon of the Daily Sketch opened his match report: – “Peter Burridge who spends one half of his time changing blondes to brunettes and the other turning goalkeepers hair white with worry had the ball in the Watford net three times last night”. (His third strike was ruled out for a foul on Jennings).
Across the six newspaper reports of the match, honourable mentions go to Dickie Dowsett and Ronnie Allen for their craft in plotting the victory. The Watford Chronicle noted that “Jennings made two superb saves…….and he deserved the ovation he received at the end of the match”.
Despite the defeat, Watford, under the Managership of Bill McGarry and Sammy Chung, ended the season third in Division 3 only missing out on promotion by two points from Champions Coventry City and, yes, Crystal Palace! Watford had their chances, but only won one of their last eight games.
Best of luck to both sides on Saturday – there is a lot riding on this Premier League clash