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Orange's football trivia expert answers your best questions

Ask The Gaffer



Ask The Gaffer
Ask The Gaffer

Harry Klinsman, Hull – 2 September 2014

Has any team ever won back to back League Cups?

The Gaffer says:

Hi Harry. Three teams have won the League Cup in successive years. Liverpool actually won it four seasons in a row between 1981 and 1984 (the first three under Bob Paisley and the last under Joe Fagan). Nottingham Forest have won it two years in a row on two separate occasions (1978 and 1979 as well as 1989 and 1990 - managed by Brian Clough on all four occasions). The other successful defenders of the trophy are Manchester United, who beat Spurs in the 2009 final and Aston Villa in 2010.

Andy, Wolverhampton – 2 September 2014

How many Liverpool players have played in 16 consecutive seasons?

The Gaffer says:

Elisha Scott PA

I reckon seven players have spent 16 or more consecutive seasons at Anfield. Two of them - Elisha Scott (18 competitive seasons in a row - 1912/13-1933/34) and Donald Mackinlay (16 in a row - 1909/10-1928/29) - had their careers interrupted by World War I, and Billy Liddell's (17 - 1939/40-1960/61) first competitive appearance was delayed for seven years by World War II (although he played regularly during unofficial war-time friendlies). Scott holds the record for Liverpool's longest-serving player (21 years, 51 days, including the hiatus for WWI). If war hadn't got in the way, those three players would have clocked up more consecutive seasons of competitive football for the Reds, but it's Ian Callaghan who holds that record with 19 between 1959/60 and 1977/78 (he was still on the books in 1978/79 but played no games). Jamie Carragher (1996/97-2012/13) and Steven Gerrard (1998/99-present) have both played for 17 straight seasons and Tommy Smith clocked up 16 (1962/63-1977/78).

Steve, Scarborough – 1 September 2014

What's the highest shirt number ever worn in the Premier League?

The Gaffer says:

Sam Hutchinson (51) and Nicklas Bendtner (52) immediately came to mind, but the record belongs to former Manchester City midfielder Adbul Razak who wore shirt number 62 during his five appearances for the club. The Ivorian was highly-rated but at 21, he now finds himself plying his trade in the Greek Superleague for OFI Crete.

Dwight Preston, Motherwell – 29 August 2014

Are Arsenal the team who have played the most Champions League play-off matches and if so who is second on the list? Cheers Gaffa!

The Gaffer says:

Champions League PA

Arsenal are joint second on the list with Celtic. Both British sides have featured in four of the six Champions League play-off rounds since they were introduced in the 2009-10 season. However, Danish side Copenhagen have been in five play-offs, with their only win coming against Rosenborg in 2010-11.

Davey Ochiltree, Paraguay – 29 August 2014

Is Jovetic the first player to score more than one goal in their first game against Liverpool since the Premier League started?

The Gaffer says:

Firstly, while that was Stevan Jovetic's first Premier League game versus Liverpool, he previously played against the Reds for Fiorentina in the Champions League, scoring a brace on 29 September 2009. But back to your question, two players have actually scored FOUR goals in their first appearance against Liverpool in the Premier League. Mark Viduka netted all of Leeds' goals in a 4-3 win over the Reds at Elland Road in 2000 during the Australian's first season in England. Andrey Arshavin matched that feat in a 4-4 draw at Anfield towards the end of the 2008-09 season, just a few months after arriving at Arsenal from Zenit St Petersburg.

Jonathan, Cornwall – 6 August 2014

Gaffer, here's a very interesting one for you - which of the 92 English League clubs broke their transfer record the longest time ago?

The Gaffer says:

Buckley PA

Love the question, Jonathan! After scanning through the record books of all 92 clubs, the longest-standing transfer record belongs to Walsall who paid Birmingham City £175,000 to re-sign Alan Buckley as player-manager in June 1979. It was Buckley's second spell as a player at the club and the transfer sum remains a Saddlers record. He's also their all-time leading scorer with over 200 goals.

Steve, Wiral – 30 July 2014

Hello Gaffa. Here`s one for you. Which was the last club to win the FA Cup, knocking out a previous winner of the trophy in every round?

The Gaffer says:

Good one! It was actually Arsenal in 1978/79. They beat Sheffield Wednesday (winners in 1896) in round three, Notts County (1894) in round four, Nottingham Forest (1898) in the fifth round, Southampton (1976) in the quarter-finals, Wolves (1893) in the semis and Manchester United (1909) in the final. Arsenal almost repeated the feat last season, playing previous winners Spurs, Coventry, Liverpool, Everton and Wigan, but their win in the final was against first-time finalists Hull City.

Thomas, Derby – 30 July 2014

Hi Gaffer, who is the longest serving international manager ever, either still managing them now or in the past?

The Gaffer says:

Josef Herberger PA

The legendary Bora Milutinovic holds the world record for taking charge of most international matches as a coach. The exact figure differs slightly depending on the source, but he has at least 287 games under his belt with Mexico, Costa Rica, USA, Nigeria, China, Honduras, Jamaica and Iraq. He is Yugoslav-born, married to a Mexican, lives in Qatar and retired in 2009. If, however, you're asking me who is the longest serving international manager in one job, the answer is Josef "Sepp"Herberger (pictured). He was coach of Germany/West Germany from 1936-1964, spanning 167 games, four World Cups and even an eight-year break during and after World War II!

Paul Debman, Ipswich – 29 July 2014

How many players have played for more than one country at the World Cup finals?

The Gaffer says:

Prosinecki PA

Seven. Luis Monti and Attilio Demaria (both Argentina 1930 and Italy 1934), Ferenc Puskas (Hungary 1954 and Spain 1962), Jose Santamaria (Uruguay 1954 and Spain 1962), Mazzola (Brazil 1958, Italy 1962 when known as Jose Altafini), Robert Prosinecki and Robert Jarni (both for Yugoslavia in 1990 and for Croatia in 1998 and 2002). Monti is the only player to appear in two finals for different nations, while Prosinecki (pictured) is the only one to score for two separate teams.

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).

Paul Eastwood, UK – 9 December 2010

Name the footballer who has scored a goal in the top flight in the 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s?

The Gaffer says:

Roy Race, from Roy of the Rovers. Next!

Aaron, Leeds – 14 February 2011

Which is the biggest stadium in the world?

The Gaffer says:

May Day Stadium

The Rungrado May Day Stadium in North Korea can seat 150,000, making it the largest non-racing stadium capacity in the world. The Maracana in Rio seats 88,992, but reputedly housed a whopping 199,854 spectators for the 1950 World Cup final.

Taffy, UK – 9 December 2010

Is it true that West Auckland in County Durham won the first World Cup?

The Gaffer says:

West Auckland were the winners of the Sir Thomas Lipton Trophy, one of the first international footballing competitions, in its two initial years (1909 and 1911). It is sometimes referred to as 'The First World Cup' but is predated by the Torneo Internazionale Stampa Sportiva, which was hosted in 1908, as the first international competition.

Nick, Weymouth – 9 December 2010

Can you tell me the players and scorers in the first FA Cup final?

The Gaffer says:

Wanderers beat the Royal Engineers 1-0 in the first FA Cup final at The Oval in 1872. The goal was scored by Betts, who strangely played under the pseudonym 'A H Chequer'. The full Wanderers line-up was: Welch, Alcock, Betts, Bonsor, Bowen, Crake, Hooman, Lubbock, Thompson, Vidal, Wollaston. The Royal Engineers' team was Marindin, Merriman, Addison; Creswell, Mitchell, Renny-Tailyour; Rich, Goodwyn, Muirhead, Cotter, Bogle.

Simon, Matlock – 9 December 2010

Which team won the FA Cup and never scored?

The Gaffer says:

This is a double trick question. You probably expect the answer to be The Royal Engineers, because Willie Never supposedly scored for them in the FA Cup final. However it's not true, as The Royal Engineers have not had a player called Never on their books at any point and he certainly didn't score in their 1875 triumph. Their team that day was Capt William Merriman, Lieut George Sim, Lieut Gerald Onslow, Lieut Richard Ruck, Lieut Pelham von Donop, Lieut Charles Wood, Lieut Herbert Rawson, Lieut William Stafford, Capt Henry Renny-Tailyour, Lieut Cecil Wingfield-Stratford, Lieut Alexander Mein. Old Etonians are also given as the answer in some cases, but Never has never (excuse the pun) represented them either.

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