Leicester v Manchester City 1968/69

leicester away 1968 to 69 prog


League Division 1

21st August 1968

attendance 30,076

Scorer Clarke(10, 27 & 44)

Ref D Lyden

City Mulhearn, Kennedy, Pardoe, Doyle, Heslop, Oakes, Lee, Bell, Summerbee, Young – unused sub Owen

Leicester Shilton, Woollett, Bell, Mackay, Sjoberg, Manley, Fern, Clarke, Stringfellow, Nish, Gibson

It really was a different soccer age back in those days for, during the summer Leicester City had gone out and broken the British transfer record to sign Allan Clarke from Fulham for the hefty sum of £150,000. “Sniffer” had netted on his debut to earn a point at Loftus Road, then had a quiet time in two subsequent defeats that had left the Foxes in 21st place in the initial published table, So, as reigning League Champions Manchester City arrived for this midweek clash. Leicester fans were still waiting to see whether this had been cash well spent or not. The answer, provided under the shimmering late August floodlights, seemed to be emphatic in its arrival. Clarke’s hat-trick was all done and dusted before the half-time whistle and owed as much to the silky creative skills of midfielder Davie Gibson as it did to the predatory instincts of the record striker.
The first came after 10 minutes; Gibson hit a glorious 30 yard pass to send Mike Stringfellow away on the left wing, not for the first time in their partnership, and the wingers cross was only half cleared, allowing Clarke to swoop and rifle the ball home from 12 yards.
The second, after 27 minutes, was set up when Gibson robbed Bobby Kennedy, raced through to draw Ken Mulhearn, then slipped the ball to Clarke for the simplest of tap ins.
The third, a minute before the break, again started with Gibson sending Stringfellow away on the left. This time his cross appeared too strong but it was well retrieved by Rodney Fern. who found Clarke in the area with his back to goal The striker turned on a sixpence, then slammed home an unstoppable drive to lay claim to the match ball.

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