Flashback 2000 - Peter Beardsley

Golden Soft Sombrero Moment

with Peter Beardsley


Overseas Clubs:

Carlisle, Newcastle United, Liverpool, Everton, Hartlepool (England), Vancouver Whitecaps (USA)



NSL Clubs:

Infamous guest stint in 2000 with the Melbourne Knights where he was controversially substituted with 20 minutes remaining against South Melbourne



England caps: 59

Golden Sombrero Moment No.1: English League Championship 1987 / 88 and 1989 / 90

Golden Sombrero Moment No.2: FA Cup winner 1988 / 89


Diegos Verdict:

Legend of the game who after being dragged by the world renowned Vlado Vanis (then coach of the Knights) during his guest stint probably never wants to come back to the country again.

Whether the NSL will be the loser is debatable but irrespective doesn't Vlado's CV look impressive now.




Some Golden Soft Sombrero Moments with Peter Beardsley


Beardsley on the cut throat Melbourne derby…

Diegos: "Usually when someone of your standing in the soccer world comes to Australia the welcome tends to verge on Royal family proportions - perhaps a civic cocktail party and maybe a visit to the local zoo - but the Knights instead have decided to throw you straight into the pressure cooker atmosphere of a Melbourne derby against traditional foes, South Melbourne.

You are a veteran of many Merseyside and Northeast derbies in the UK.

What are your expectations of tomorrow's clash?

Beardsley: "From what I've heard from the boys in the dressing room everybody's looking forward to it.

I've heard it's quite a physical game and it's a good one to start in."

Soft Sombrero Moment 2000

Beardsley on the Melbourne Knights…

Diegos: The Knights are a club with a real championship pedigree and an outstanding reputation for nurturing excellent Australian talent.

One of their more famous exports being current Celtic striker, Mark Viduka.

They are however, in a transition phase at present, at best hoping to make the play offs this season.

What are your initial impressions of the playing roster and is there another Mark Viduka in the offing?

Beardsley: "I've had a couple of training sessions and to be honest it's gone very well.

The boys have been very good and the training has been of a good quality and tempo and I've really enjoyed it.

In many ways, no disrespect to the boys, I'm surprised at the high pace we're playing at."

Soft Sombrero Moment 2000

Beardsley on the 'Hand of God' goal by the other Diego…

Diegos: " You have, no doubt, been asked many times about the day when the mercurial Diego Maradona rose gazelle-like, some say drug assisted, above England keeper, Peter Shilton, to score the infamous 'Hand of God' goal in the 1986 World Cup.

What the Diegos want to know is, what was your initial reaction to the goal - did you know immediately that he had cheated? Did you go and mob-handle the referee in protest or did you just try and kick the nearest Argentinean to exact some sort of revenge?"

Beardsley: "None of those things really.

Initially where I was standing on the half way line I didn't see what he had done but I knew by Peter Shilton's reaction that he had handled the ball.

Peter was distraught. He really would've knocked his head off if Diego had tried to head it.

It was one of those things. Unfortunately the referee never saw it and there's not a lot you can do about it. There's no point getting upset about it. He is not going change his mind once he has given the goal so we decided to get on with it the best we could.

It's a shame because what he did took away from his second goal, which was one of the best goals you'll ever see. That's the saddest thing for me.

It was one of those things and a lot of players would do the same if they could get away with it.'

Soft Sombrero Moment 2000

Beardsley on Diego's other goal…

Diegos: " In that same game Maradona went on to rub salt into English wounds scoring arguably the best goal ever in a world cup, running over 60 metres, motoring away from an almost pedestrian Peter Reid and hurdling challenges from Butcher, Fenwick and finally Shilton before slotting it away.

When the Diegos pulled the tape of that momentous incident we noticed that you were nowhere to be seen.

Where you merely standing back in awe of the great Diego or were you just making sure that you were never going to be caught on film embarrassingly trying to stop him?"

Beardsley: "Initially when he first took off I was about five yards away from him. Obviously by the time he scored I was about fifty-five.

I still don't know how he did it. It's just a shame for us that it cost us the game.

During that tournament Maradona was a larger than life figure on the park.

For me it was an honour to be on the same field. I was considered a youngster at that time and it was one of the biggest things I've ever experienced. To be fair to him he was absolutely fantastic.

I've always said that he won that World Cup on his own. I think that the expectation on him in 1986 was unbelievable but what made him so special was that he actually went out there and did it. He was frightening.

It's a shame that what he did has taken away from what a magnificent player that he was."

Soft Sombrero Moment 2000

Beardsley on Liverpool and Manchester United…

Diegos: " Many people compare the great Liverpool team of the 80's of which you were an integral member, with the current Manchester United treble winning 'Spice Boy' team.

How do you compare both teams and which one of your teammates in that Liverpool team of the 80's could be best described as the Spice Boy of that era?"

Beardsley: "Spice Boy' wise it would have to be John Barnes.

He was absolutely amazing. He had so much ability and was also a great fellow.

I roomed with him for three years and I absolutely loved the fellow.

I would say that he was better than anyone that Manchester United have got at the moment. They've got some magnificent players but I would say that John Barnes would top the lot."

Diegos: "You also employed the Beckham hairstyle in your day.

Were there any Brillcream sponsors offered to you back then?"

Beardsley: "No. Sadly it looks better on him than it did on me.

It's a shame with 'Becks'.

People talk about his looks and lifestyle but forget about what a fantastic footballer he is. I know him personally and he is a great person as well. He is a great lad."

Soft Sombrero Moment 2000

Beardsley on coaching England…

Diegos: " You are currently a member of the England coaching staff, working as an assistant under Kevin Keegan.

Coaching the England national team has in the past been a thankless task with tabloid fuelled scandals involving faith healers, bad karma, World Cup diaries souring the reputation of some and nicknames such as 'Turnip head' given to others.

How does the current England coaching staff get along with the British tabloids and are there any scandals on the horizon?"

Beardsley: "At the moment there's obviously not a problem because everything is going well. Kevin has managed to turn it around and we've qualified for the Euros.

The pressure now is obviously going there and trying to win. That's the tough part. I'd be very surprised if Kevin ends up with the stick that the previous one's have had because he is so helpful to them.

It's hard to tell how well we are going to go in the Euro championships.

I work with the players' everyday and can see what they can do. If they can perform anything like they perform in training they'll go very close. Obviously there are a lot of quality teams but I fully expect England to get to the last four."

Soft Sombrero Moment 2000


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Womens Footy

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Oz A League

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Other Sport

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