WOLVERHAMPTON WANDERERS 1 CITY 0
League Division 1
29th March 1975
scorer Hibbitt(56 pen)
ref Mr D Nippard
City Corrigan, Hammond, Donachie, Doyle, Barrett, Oakes, Keegan, Bell, Royle, Hartford, Tueart – sub Daniels(70)
Wolves Pierce, Palmer, Parkin, Jefferson, Munro, McAlle, Hibbitt, Carr, Dougan, Kindon, Wagstaffe – sub Withe(79)
My Dream Game – Joe Corrigan
JOE CORRIGAN’S memory slips back a mere five months to pinpoint the game he regards as the most satisfying of his career in big-time football.
March 29th-Easter Saturday dawned with Corrigan still uncertain whether he would be fit to face the formidable strike force of Wolves at Molineux later that afternoon.
He explained: “The previous day I damaged my hand playing against Middlesbrough and it had been strapped up afterwards. Though the injury had given me little pain overnight I was afraid that there might be some reaction when I reported at the ground prior to leaving for Wolverhampton.”
Fortunately for Corrigan he passed a fitness check supervised by physiotherapist Freddie Griffiths and was able to continue his comeback against the hungry Wolves.
It was an important game for Corrigan. He says: “I had just fought my way back into the first team and in the previous two matches had really got the crowd on my side once again”. My confidence was oozing back for earlier I had been given a rough ride by fans and critics-knocks that forced me to ask the club for a transfer.”However, the reception I had received in home wins over Coventry and Boro made me realise that all was not lost and at the same time it probably helped to make me a better goalkeeper.”
That is why Corrigan looks back on the Molineux game with particular pride. For he defied the might of the Wolves attack and was beaten only by a penalty the home side were decidedly lucky to receive.
City lost 1-0 that day, but giant Joe more than earned his spurs.
He reflects on that game: “It was the fifth match I had played since taking over from Keith MacRae, who had been injured at Leicester. And as early as the opening minutes I was in action.
“A back-pass from Colin Bell fell short and, quick as a flash, Steve Kindon was on the ball. He cut in sharply from the left hand side of the penalty area and as he advanced I raced from my line.
When Kindon shot fiercely, I fell and the ball struck my body and I was able to smother it safely.
“That was the start of an almost constant barrage with Kindon the particular Wanderers danger man. When he cut in again, this time from the right, I was only able to parry his well drilled shot. The ball broke lose and this time Derek Dougan had a go.”But again I somehow twisted myself to save the re-bound. How? I just couldn’t tell you. it was much the same story in the second half one way traffic with Kindon always on the look out for space to try his powerful shooting.”
It was then that Corrigan made what he regards as “my best ever save”. The ex-Burnley winger unleashed a wicked drive that was heading for the top right hand corner of the net. Corrigan flung himself up and sideways to turn the ball over the post . . . a truly spectacular and memorable effort.
Back to Joe: “Just after that Wolves were awarded a penalty. It was a harsh decision from our point of view for it can only have been accidental when Colin Barratt handled. But the ref had no hesitation in pointing to the spot.
Even then Corrigan almost made it a perfect day. He got a hand to Ken Hibbitt’s shot but succeeded only in pushing the ball into the side-netting. It was a tragedy for City and an even bigger tragedy for Corrigan who had played so magnificently.
adapted from an article ‘My Dream Game – Joe Corrigan’ by Peter Gardner from the City programme 16th August 1975