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Orange's football trivia expert answers your best questions

Ask The Gaffer



Ask The Gaffer
Ask The Gaffer

Jacko, Merseyside – 28 July 2014

Which team in the World Cup has had managers of 13 different nationalities?

The Gaffer says:

Great stat! It's Costa Rica. Since their first coach Eladio Rosabal Cordero (who was actually Costa Rican!) in 1921, they've had managers arriving from all across the globe. The full list is - Costa Ricans, El Salvadorian (Ricardo Saprissa 1935-38), an Englishman (Randolph Galloway in 1946 - a former Derby, Nottingham Forest, Luton, Coventry and Spurs striker who managed clubs in Spain and South America), several Spaniards, eight Brazilians (most recently Rene Simoes in 2009), four Uruguayans, a Chilean (Hugo Tassara Olivares in 1960), three Argentinians (most recently Ricardo La Volpe 2010-11), a Czech (Ivan Mraz in 1980), a Yugoslavian who became a naturalised Mexican (the famous Bora Milutinovic), a Hungarian/Brazilian (Americo Brunner), an American (Steve Sampson 2003-04) and three Colombians (including current boss Jorge Luis Pinto).

Sammy Calder, Birmingham – 28 July 2014

Is it true that Man United have never won a Champions League game against a Spanish team in Spain?

The Gaffer says:

No it's not true. Manchester United have a poor record in Spain, but they have won two of 18 Champions League/European Cup fixtures away to Spanish opposition, drawing 10 and losing six. Their two victories came against Deportivo (2-0) in the first leg of their 2001-02 quarter-final, and Valencia (1-0) in the group stages in 2010-11.

Nishith Verma, India – 28 July 2014

Hey Gaffer, I'm a big fan. Arsene Wenger renewed his contract recently for three years with Arsenal. The first five letters of his name match the first five letters of his club. Question is, has anyone got closer in terms of the letters matching in the history of top-flight football throughout Europe?

The Gaffer says:

My best efforts are Wolfgang Wolf who managed Wolfsburg from 1998-2003, and Vyacheslav Grozny (Hroznyi in Ukraine) who coached Russian side Terek Grozny in 2008-09.

Wee Christie, Belfast – 27 July 2014

Gaffer,after watching my beloved Cliftonville get knocked out of Europe last night I was wondering what Irish League team has progressed furthest in the European Cup/Champions League and when this happened? Cheers Gaff

The Gaffer says:

Linfield got to the quarter-finals of the European Cup in the 1966-67 season, beating Aris and Valerengen before losing to CSKA Sofia 2-3 on aggregate. Your beloved Cliftonville have yet to go further than the second qualifying round and in four Champions League games, The Reds have scored only once and conceded 18 times.

Peter, Bexley – 26 July 2014

Which country has the most players to win the Golden Boot at the World Cup finals?

The Gaffer says:

Germany PA

Brazil and Germany both boast three outright winners, while Brazilian pair Garrincha and Vava were among six joint winners of the award in 1962. Here's the full list: Brazil (Leonidas, Ademir, Ronaldo, Garrincha*, Vava*); Germany (Gerd Muller, Miroslav Klose, Thomas Muller**); Italy (Paolo Rossi, Salvatore Schillaci); Hungary (Sandor Kocsis, Florian Albert*); Uruguay (Guillermo Stabile); Czechoslovakia (Oldrich Nejedly); France (Just Fontaine); Portugal (Eusebio); Poland (Grzegorz Lato); Argentina (Mario Kempes); England (Gary Lineker); Croatia (Davor Suker); Colombia (James Rodriguez); Soviet Union (Valentin Ivanov*); Yugoslavia (Drazan Jerkovic*); Chile (Leonel Sanchez*); Russia (Oleg Salenko*); Bulgaria (Hristo Stoichkov*). * Golden Boot shared. ** Despite Muller, Spain's David Villa, Holland's Wesley Sneijder and Uruguay's Diego Forlan all scoring five goals? in 2010, Muller was named the outright winner by virtue of having more assists. When players were tied for top scorer in 1962 and 1994, there was no tie-breaker.

Dr Evil, Planet Zorb – 3 April 2014

What significant goal did Moritz Voltz score?

The Gaffer says:

Moritz Volz was the rather unlikely scorer of the Premier League's 15,000th goal when he netted for Fulham against Chelsea in December 2006. Other Prem goalscoring landmarks are as follows: 1000th - Mike Newell (Blackburn v Forest, April 1993), 2000th - Mick Quinn (Coventry v Man City, Feb 1994), 5000th - Chris Sutton and Andy Townsend jointly (Blackburn v Leicester and Aston Villa v Southampton, December 1996), 10,000th - Les Ferdinand (Tottenham v Fulham, December 2001) and 20,000th - Marc Albrighton (Aston Villa v Arsenal, December 2011).

Sam, Suffolk – 31 March 2014

Can you name the player (outfielder) who has played the most Premier League games without scoring?

The Gaffer says:

Kenny Cunningham PA

That particular 'accolade' belongs to Kenny Cunningham, whose personal goal record during his 10-year Premier League career is completely blank. In all he played 335 top-flight matches (starting 334 of them, and coming off the bench just once) for Wimbledon and Birmingham without ever hitting the net. He did score just one goal as a professional - it was for Millwall in Division One (i.e. second tier) in a 2-2 draw away to Portsmouth on 2 April 1994.

Colin Robson, Middlesbrough – 7 March 2014

How many players with the letter x in their surname have full caps for England?

The Gaffer says:

Bit of a 'pub classic' this one, so it's certainly worth repeating - Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Graham Rix, Lee Dixon, Kerry Dixon, Graeme le Saux, Jason Wilcox, Mike Duxbury, Jack Cox, Ronnie Dix, John Dixon, Albert Quixhall, Freddie Fox and George Molyneux.

Steve Brown, Borneo – 30 May 2014

Which player has played for 4 clubs who have all won the European Cup, but the teams never won their domestic league nor the European Cup whilst he played for them?

The Gaffer says:

Dean Saunders PA

An oldie, but most definitely a goldie! The answer to this classic pub question is Dean Saunders. He's played for ex-European Cup winners Liverpool, Nottingham Forest, Aston Villa and Benfica, but never come remotely close to winning it himself. Edit (1): Johnny in York has got in touch with an adendum to this answer: "Gaffer - Pierre Van Hooijdonk! Celtic, Forest, Benfica and Feyernoord." He's right, y'know. Edit (2): Murray in Belfast has also got in touch to throw Robbie Keane into the mix. He's right too! Keane's relevant clubs are Inter Milan, Liverpool, Celtic and Aston Villa. Edit (3): And another! Conor from Dubai is correct with his assumption of Tony Cascarino, who turned out for Aston Villa, Celtic, Chelsea and Marseille.

Wally Thomson, Norwich – 9 June 2014

Who is the youngest player ever to play at a World Cup?

The Gaffer says:

An old one but as it's that time of the year... Norman Whiteside, aged 17 years and 41 days, for Northern Ireland against Yugoslavia in 1982. Pele is the youngest to play in the final. He was 17 years and 249 days old when he scored twice in Brazil 5-2 victory against Sweden in 1958.

Frederick Gillespie, Nottingham – 15 May 2014

Gaffer, my wife informs me that this season has seen a record number of managers leaving their posts in the Premiership? when was the previous record set and what was it?

The Gaffer says:

I wish my wife casually dished out football trivia over the dinner table! She's spot on. There were 10 managerial departures during the 2013/14 Premier League season, and 12 if you count Tim Sherwood and Pepe Mel, who technically left after the season had ended. The previous record was in 2008/09, when there were nine, but again 12 if you count the proceeding summer. They were, in chronological order, Alan Curbishley (resigned at West Ham), Kevin Keegan (quit Newcastle), Juande Ramos (sacked by Spurs), Harry Redknapp (left Portsmouth for Spurs), Roy Keane (resigned from Sunderland), Paul Ince (sacked by Blackburn), Tony Adams (sacked by Portsmouth), Luiz Felipe Scolari (sacked by Chelsea) and Joe Kinnear (stepped down at Newcastle). Then after the season had finished Guus Hiddink left as interim manager of Chelsea, Ricky Sbragia resigned at Sunderland and Steve Bruce left Wigan to replace him on Wearside.

Richard, St Helens – 15 May 2014

Which nine players have scored for six different Premier League clubs

The Gaffer says:

Bellamy PA

Craig Bellamy has now scored for seven different Prem clubs, making him the sole the record holder. He's netted for Coventry, Newcastle, Blackburn, Liverpool, West Ham, Man City and Cardiff. The others are: Andrew Cole (Newcastle, Man Utd, Blackburn, Fulham, Man City and Portsmouth), Les Ferdinand (QPR, Newcastle, Tottenham West Ham, Leicester, Bolton), Robbie Keane (Coventry, Leeds, Tottenham, Liverpool, West Ham and Aston Villa), Nicolas Anelka (Arsenal, Liverpool, Man City, Bolton, Chelsea and West Brom), Darren Bent (Ipswich, Charlton, Tottenham, Sunderland, Aston Villa and Fulham), Marcus Bent (Crystal Palace, Ipswich, Leicester, Everton, Charlton and Wigan), Peter Crouch (Aston Villa, Southampton, Liverpool, Portsmouth, Tottenham and Stoke) and Nick Barmby (Tottenham, Middlesbrough, Everton, Leeds, Liverpool and Hull).

David Forster, Co.Durham – 23 April 2014

Hi Gaffer, There is one team in the United Kingdom with a letter in there name that no other club has, what is the letter and who is ths team?

The Gaffer says:

I'm feeling in a good mood this afternoon so I'll indulge you this one old chestnut! It's St Johnstone; the only league team in Great Britain with a J in their name.

Rob H, Norwich – 14 April 2014

There is only 1 team in the football league without any of the letters from the word mackeral in its full name, which team isit??

The Gaffer says:

You can't claim to know anything about football trivia until you know the answer to this pub classic. It's your 'starter for ten', your passcode at the front door of Gaffer Towers. It's Swindon Town.

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