May 5th 1973

“FA Cup Final – Sunderland 1 Leeds 0” / “4.26 wages” / “In evng mormor gave me watch as early confirmation present, bludy smart watch – atomatic”

1973’s FA Cup Final has always been lauded as one of the best in the competition’s history.

Leeds United were (then) amongst English football’s ‘heirarchy’ (between 1965 and 1974, the team never finished a season outside the Top 4 of the First Division!) and were squared up against Second Division strugglers Sunderland – and thus were expected to “walk it”

However, a first half goal from Sunderland’s Ian Porterfield and a tremendous save from goalkeeper Jimmy Montgomery denied Leeds their expected success.

It’s perhaps most memorable though for Sunderland’s manager, Bob Stokoe‘s reaction at the final whistle.

Wearing his customary pork pie hat and a trenchcoat over a figure-hugging red tracksuit he ran from the touchline – in quite a strange jumpy fashion – to hug the goalie.

Here’s some highlights from the match.

It’s perhaps no surprise that I still have the watch that my grandmother gave me 36 years ago.

A terrific (indeed, “bludy smart“) Huntana model suitably engraved – in Danish – on the back.

Time and date, 25 jewels and “automatic” (not “atomatic” as I wrote).

It has to be said that for a kid in 1973 “automatic” was quite a revelation – the whole notion that you didn’t have to wind up your watch anymore, that it would wind itself just by wearing it. Would technology ever end?

I wore the watch for years afterwards, really only retiring it from use when I got into the whole “Swatch” watch phenomenon. I have popped it on a few times more recently, only to discover on each occasion that it (sadly) loses time. When monies allow I should really get it repaired, and the scratched glass buffed out.

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