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Orange's football trivia expert answers your best questions

Ask The Gaffer



Ask The Gaffer
Ask The Gaffer

Arthur D, Donemana, Ulster – 17 April 2014

Since the inception of the SPL, how many different teams have played in it and who are they please? Thanks Gaffer

The Gaffer says:

19 teams played in SPL before it folded 2013. Here are teams in order of how many seasons they played in the SPL; Celtic, Hearts, Motherwell, Kilmarnock, Aberdeen, Dundee United (15 seasons), Rangers and Hibernian (14), Dunfermline (9), Inverness, St Johnstone, Dundee and St Mirren (8), Falkirk and Livingston (5), Hamilton (3), Partick Thistle (2), Ross County and Gretna (1).

Roger, Watford – 17 April 2014

When was the last time Everton finished above Man United?

The Gaffer says:

Everton have not finished above Manchester United in the Premier League era (yet!), although they did come relatively close in the 2004-05 season. You have to go back to the 1989-90 First Division campaign to find the last time. The Toffees finished 6th with the Red Devil all the way down in 13th.

Jon, Edinburgh – 17 April 2014

How many under 19's have played in the Premier League this season?

The Gaffer says:

The tally currently stands at 22. Moussa Dembele and Patrick Roberts (both Fulham, Adam Armstrong (Newcastle), Serge Gnabry and Chuba Akpom (both Arsenal), Sam Gallagher and Luke Shaw (both Southampton), Milos Veljkovic (Tottenham), Declan John (Cardiff), Hiram Boateng (Crystal Palace) and Jordon Ibe (Liverpool) are the current crop of U19 players. Raheem Sterling (Liverpool), Adnan Januzaj (Man United), Mats Moller Daehli (Cardiff), Nabil Bentaleb (Tottenham), James Ward-Prowse, Calum Chambers and Harrison Reed (all Southampton), Cauley Woodrow and Muamer Tankovic (both Fulham), John Stones (Everton), Josh Murphy (Norwich) and Elliott Lee (West Ham) all turning 19 during the season.

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.

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!

Paul, Angelsey – 10 February 2011

Has the score of Forfar 4 East Fife 5 ever happened?

The Gaffer says:

East Fife have never beaten Forfar by that infamous scoreline. However, in the 1963/1964 season, Forfar did beat East Fife 5-4 in a Scottish Division Two match.

Joe, Everton Valley – 14 February 2011

Who sung You'll Never Walk Alone first? Liverpool or Celtic?

The Gaffer says:

Kop PA

Although there is no clear evidence, most claim Liverpool sung the anthem before Celtic. The song is actually taken from the musical Carousel composed by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein, and only became a terrace favourite after it was covered by Gerry and the Pacemakers in November 1963. Liverpool supporters adopted it which footage from Panorama in 1964 shows, however there is no concrete evidence that is was before or after Celtic. As an aside, the song was first heard in a footballing capacity at the 1958 memorial service for the Munich Air Disaster, but Man Utd didn't adopt it as an anthem, unlike Liverpool, Celtic, Feyenoord, FC Twente and FC Tokyo to name but five.

Harry, UK – 14 February 2011

Who is the oldest person to play league football?

The Gaffer says:

John Ryan PA

John Ryan (pictured), the owner of Doncaster Rovers, who brought himself on as substitute in the last minute of a game in 2003 aged 52 years, 11 months. Aside from that cameo appearance, the real accolade should go to Sir Stanley Matthews, who played his final game for Stoke on 6 February 1965. He was 50 years and 4 days old.

Woody, Clitheroe – 14 February 2011

Why are Hartlepool called the Monkey Hangers?

The Gaffer says:

Monkey

During the Napoleonic wars a French ship was wrecked off the coast of Hartlepool and amongst its wreckage was the ship's pet monkey. Thinking the animal could be a French spy, the residents of Hartlepool held a trial and sentenced it to death by hanging.

Crag, Wigan – 14 February 2011

What is the highest number you can have on the back of your shirt?

The Gaffer says:

Ceni PA

It depends entirely on the league in question, and whether they entertain such nonsense - Mido requested 99 when he joined Tottenham, but the Premier League refused. Looking further afield, Rogerio Ceni wore number 618 during his record-breaking 618th appearance for Sao Paolo, which is believed to be the highest shirt number ever worn during a professional match. Vitor Baia wore 99 for Porto in the 2003 Uefa Cup final, which is the highest number in a European match.

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