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Orange's football trivia expert answers your best questions

Ask The Gaffer



Ask The Gaffer
Ask The Gaffer

Tom, Hull – 16 April 2014

Is it true that only one person has ever scored from a corner in the World Cup finals and if so do you have his name and country for me?

The Gaffer says:

Corner PA

It's true. Former Colombia midfielder Marcos Coll is the only player to have scored direct from a corner at the World Cup after his set-piece went straight in against Soviet Union at the 1962 finals in Chile. It was actually a rubbish corner which should have easily been cleared at the near post, but defender Givi Chokheli inexplicably let the ball bounce past him and into the net, much to the fury of the legendary Lev Yashin who was in goal. It inspired a thrilling Colombia fightback as they came from 4-1 down to snatch a 4-4 draw.

Mike., Hull – 16 April 2014

Russ Wicox has recently broken the record for a newly-appointed manager by going 24 games unbeaten and counting - beating a 125-year Football League record held by William Sudell as manager of Preston North End. Some sources are saying this is a world record. Surely this can't be right? Please help solve this problem.

The Gaffer says:

He's been credited with the world record, although it is unverified. The Scunthorpe boss extended his unbeaten run since replacing Brian Laws as manager on 20 November to 26 matches following Saturday's 2-2 draw against Bury. That result means he has passed the milestone set by former Chelsea and Tottenham manager Andre Villas-Boas, who went 25 games unbeaten after becoming manager of Porto in 2010.

John, Wirral – 15 April 2014

Which team last scored 100 goals in the Premier League?

The Gaffer says:

Chelsea are the only team to have reached the landmark in the Premier League era with 103 goals in 2009-10. The Blues scored 68 at Stamford Bridge and 35 away from home. Their record is under threat this season, though. Liverpool are currently on 93 goals with four games left, while Manchester City have scored 86 to date with six matches remaining.

Richard Evans, Wellingborough – 15 April 2014

With reference to players playing for two international teams, Diego Costa has two caps for Brazil and recently made his debut for Spain, how is this possible?

The Gaffer says:

Costa's two appearances for Brazil against Italy and Russia were both friendly matches, meaning he was still allowed to switch allegiances as you are not tied to one country until you have played in an official competitive game. Costa is the fifth Brazil-born player to feature for Spain after Heraldo Bezerra, Catanha, Donato and Marcos Senna, although none of the others were capped by the five-time World Cup winners.

Neily Brown, Campbeltown, Argyll, Scotland – 14 April 2014

Gaffer, can you please tell me the 1st..2nd and 3rd placings in the European Footballer of the Year Award in the following years: 1967, 1968, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1984. You will notice that this is the years that British clubs won the European Champions Cup!!

The Gaffer says:

Right Neily, here goes (I've put an asterisk next to a player if he played for that season's European Cup winners): 1967 - Florian Albert (Ferencvaros), Bobby Charlton (Man Utd), Jimmy Johnstone* (Celtic). 1968 - George Best* (Man Utd), Bobby Charlton* (Man Utd), Dragan Dzajic (Red Star). 1977 - Allan Simonsen (Borussia Monchengladbach), Kevin Keegan (Hamburg), Michel Platini (Nancy). 1978 - Kevin Keegan (Hamburg), Hans Krankl (Barcelona), Rob Rensenbrink (Anderlecht). 1979 - Kevin Keegan (Hamburg), Karl-Heinz Rummenigge (Bayern Munich), Ruud Krol (Ajax). 1980 - Karl-Heinz Rummenigge (Bayern Munich), Bernd Schuster (Barcelona), Michel Platini (St Etienne). 1981 - Karl-Heinz Rummenigge (Bayern Munich), Paul Breitner (Bayern Munich), Bernd Schuster (Bayern Munich). 1982 - Paolo Rossi (Juventus), Alain Giresse (Bordeaux), Zbigniew Boniek (Juventus). 1984 - Michel Platini (Juventus), Jean Tigana (Bordeaux), Preben Elkjaer (Verona). So, in the nine years you mention, only three European Cup-winning players were voted among the top three players in Europe, and only one of them won it. Seems a bit strange, doesn't it?

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.

Ken McKie, Newcastle – 3 March 2014

How many players have scored for both teams in a Premier League game and can you name them?

The Gaffer says:

Excellent question, Ken. There's a lot more than you probably think: 2013-14 - Fabian Delph, James Chester, Vincent Kompany, Phil Bardsley. 12-13 - Wayne Rooney, Gareth Bale, Emmerson Boyce, Jonny Evans. 11-12 - Thomas Vermaelen, Danny Graham. 10-11 - Brede Hangeland, Martin Skrtel. 09-10 - Kamil Zayatte, Carlton Cole, Jody Craddock, Leon Osman, Emmanuel Adebayor. 08-09 - Kevin Davies. 07-08 - William Gallas. 05-06 - George Boateng. 04-05 - James Beattie. 02-03 - Edu, Michael Svensson. 01-02 - Niall Quinn, David Beckham. 00-01 - David Unsworth, Mark Venus. 99-00 - Dion Dublin, Chris Armstrong. 98-99 - Gareth Barry, Frank Lampard. 96-97 - Scott Minto. 94-95 - Neil Maddison. 93-94 - Craig Burley, Chris Sutton. I make that 35 and counting!

Chum, London – 13 April 2011

Which was the last team to win the FA Cup with an all-English side?

The Gaffer says:

The 1975 West Ham team who beat Fulham 2-0 in the final. The line-up was: Mervyn Day, John McDowell, Frank Lampard, Billy Bonds (c), Tommy Taylor, Kevin Lock, Billy Jennings, Graham Paddon, Alan Taylor, Trevor Brooking, Pat Holland.

Imran, Manchester – 22 March 2011

Which players have won the Premier League, that are the only players from their country to do so. Eg Dwight Yorke with Man Utd who comes from Trinidad & Tobago.

The Gaffer says:

This is one of my 'classic questions', so apologies to long-term readers who may have seen it on the old site or on Orange World. Here's the full list: Alex Manninger (Austria), Dimitar Berbatov (Bulgaria), Peter Schmeichel (Denmark), Michael Essien (Ghana), Eidur Gudjohnsen (Iceland), Park Ji-Sung (Korea), Christopher Wreh (Liberia), Tomasz Kuszczak (Poland), Dwight Yorke (Trinidad and Tobago), Oleg Luzhny (Ukraine), Diego Forlan (Uruguay). N.B. Quinton Fortune (South Africa) didn't play enough games in one season to win a title while at Manchester United.

Darren Stow, Boston – 28 February 2011

Who played in the Premiership and was also on the plane of the Munich air crash but obviously survived?

The Gaffer says:

Lukic PA

A horrible urban myth this one. The answer is supposedly the unborn John Lukic in his mother's womb, but it's untrue. Lukic was born in December 1960, nearly three years after the tragedy - that's one long pregnancy! There was at least a passenger called Lukic on the flight, which is where the myth stems from.

Zac Bearshaw, Rochdale – 16 February 2011

Which Football League team is closest to the River Mersey?

The Gaffer says:

Edgeley Park PA

Stockport County's Edgeley Park. The River Mersey starts where the River Goyt and River Tame - which run off the Derbyshire hills - meet under the MerseyWay Shopping Centre in the centre of Stockport.

Rambo, Scotland – 11 February 2011

What's the only team in Britain with a J in its name?

The Gaffer says:

Of note? St Johnstone.

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