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Hello and welcome to The Stand with Aymond On the Stand is proudly sponsored by Tesco.
As we move into the next phase of the lockdown road map, we must continue to hold firm. Please continue to follow social distancing guidelines to help you shop as safely as possible. And thank you for your patience and support so far. Now, more than ever, every little helps. Now we've just learned, sadly, that Jack Charlton has passed away at the age of 85. Jack, of course, was a great footballer, part of the England team that won the World Cup in 1966.
But in this country, he will always be remembered for his 10 years in charge of the Irish soccer team. And he took us to three major championships and to places we'd never been before a few weeks ago on the occasion of his 18th birthday. John Giles and Liam Brady joined me to pay tribute to the big man, Jack Charlton, on his 80th birthday. Today marks the 18th birthday of Jack Charlton, Jack is a huge figure in football. He was a member of England's World Cup winning team and he played, amazingly, 629 league games for Leeds and 762 games for Leeds.
All together, he was a one club player. And of course, most importantly, from our perspective, he's somebody who had a major impact on our life, not just our football life, but our cultural life. For the 10 years that he was manager of the Irish team from nineteen eighty six to 1996 and to discuss Jack and we hope, give a rounded and definitive view of this extraordinary character. I'm joined by John Giles, who was with Jack for 10, 11, 12 years at Leeds, and by Liam Brady, one of our greatest players who played for Jack in the Irish team.
And of course, I have my own experiences as a journalist with Jake. But that's less important, John. And thank you very much for doing this while researching Jack's remarkable career. One of the most striking things is that before dawn, Revy arrived to take over at Leeds and Jack hadn't been a good boy always. He wasn't a dedicated pro. And you know a bit about those sort of times and how close Jack came to being booted by Donlevy, very close to him and actually done played with him, you see.
Right. And so knew him. He knew him well. And when down Dan took over as manager, he knew all the bad boys were having a very, very bad time. They were they were going nowhere. And Jack was one of the leading bad boys. Yeah. Apparently when they put the sack it up, like with the weight and that upon the training ground, the bad boys had come along and brought them down the side of the pitch.
Yeah. And Jack was one of them. So I think when Tom took over, he got Jack in straight away and said, look, you're on your way, right? Unless you got a grip on yourself. Yeah. Which he did in a big way because he wasn't he wasn't a young fella at that time. No, indeed.
Oh yeah. Yeah, that's true. And in fact, I will come to a later.
But he was just coming up to 30 when he made his debut for England, which is amazing, but I think it was a bit younger than that.
Well, maybe it was he was he but he was an experience. He was an experienced player.
He certainly at that particular time, I think it was about only about only 27. He was getting on a bit anyway in terms of players who had should have been established at that particular time. So Don did get a group and then he warned them. And to be fair to Jack, he did get a group of himself there and then became a really, really top player.
Now, when you went there in 63, it was a big investment for Leeds. And how did you find Jack and how did he react to your arrival?
He was OK. I had met him a couple of times and he used to come over to see Bobby at Manchester. Yeah. So I did know him very well, but I in had met him, but he was fine. He was a jack is a peculiar personality in many ways and it wouldn't make it easier. You know, it just er I used to sit beside him when I went to sleep and he was OK. He was, it was fine.
Jack. Jack lived in a world of his own you know. And while you be there and if it's to Jack it suited him. If it didn't shoot him, it didn't shoot him, you know, shot him in and it that was his character. And like a lot of people say, well, how did you get on with him? But Jack was Jack and what he was. And he was honest in his ways. You know, it was peculiar.
He was odd. He could be ignorant at times, but he wasn't dishonest. Yeah, well, you knew where you were with you.
Don't tell me it's just about you at that time.
And really, when I knew you were weren't for a very long time, you were a major prankster and you're always up to mischief. It's hard to think that you're free one of Dublin City now and that you're a very serious and I'm a lot older and grand old man of Irish soccer.
But you're a masseur and you told me a very funny story, which I'm sure Liam will recognise from your. And when Jack used to go to the toilet before training and read his copy of The Daily Mirror and yeah, so those players did that except me, I was reading The Guardian.
Now, tell us about that story, because that was that was that was later on there.
It was on a Monday and yeah, on Monday. Training wasn't good. It was it was sort of the circuit and it wasn't the enjoyable training. And it was a cold time in the winter, really cold time in the winter. So when we come in from training there, you'd be it'd be very cold. And the time that we had it was an outside time. It wasn't in the dressing room. Yeah. And one morning we came in and nobody was in a good mood, didn't enjoy it.
And he said, babe, I'm going to be the cruelty. I'm going for a crap. I don't know why he was telling everybody took the paper out with him, crossed it. They've got a dog. And Allan Clarke myself said, right, we'll we'll we'll have a bit of a laugh with Jack. So we went out and there was paying for the gear, you know, like a Ben Zygier. And we put loads, filled it up.
We're freezing cold water. Yeah. And the toilet Jack was in, it was an open toilet, you know, like so we've got a thing and we climbed up, got this big thing up and just stood up over the toilet and just dropped it straight in. We could hear Jack with Jack didn't take jokes very well and he wasn't sure he came in his hair. Was Orien wet to tell he had done was ringing wet. Yeah. And he slammed the paper on it on the thing, you know, he says that's it.
First of all, he looked at me. It wasn't me, Jack. Alan Clough. You didn't like Alan Clarke very well. Very much. And I had a go at him and he said, Well, I'll tell you one thing. I guarantee you one thing. Nobody nobody will ever go in there and have a crap and piss again. And then he said, which was typical, by the way, you didn't even get me. The towel was ringing and his hair was.
But it was like a kid you didn't even get me. So you never found out who it was? Nobody.
I'm sure you knew who the suspects did. Oh, yeah. The point I want to get to is as a player then, John, how good was he? How important was he? Because Donlevy was bringing a lot of young players like Peter Lorimer, Andy Gray and, you know, into the side Norman Hunter, how good was Jack when he put his mind to it, stopped messing in during the week and played? How good was he?
Yeah, well, it wasn't good trainer. No what anyway. But by the way, when he played, he played and he was really good. I think it was the best centre half in England for about five years right now. He wasn't great. He wasn't great with the young lads. Yeah. You know, like if it didn't suit him you'd have a go at them then. Think it was Jack was in a ward of his own in that way.
But when he came down he was amazing. He was a big, strict, stringy shot to recovered the ground really well and he was good in the air and balls over the top. There was nobody had been for pace deceptive in that way. And it was a good defender with both feet. You know, if you're getting the ball away, he was well balanced on both sides to get it away. Yes. And didn't take any and was obviously scored a lot of important goals coming off from corner kicks and free kicks.
Yeah, but the thing is with act like juggling two cameras in a world he was on, I know I should take the myself. You take a lot of free kicks and you put it right. And Jack had scored a goal. He turned around and run straight back to his opposition. Would not recognize now in any way that you you know, you put the ball on a plate for them. Look, nothing like that.
I've got to bring in Liam and the impression you had of Jack as a player. I mean, he was in the sixty six World Cup team. But the basic impression that John was given, there are gonna be idiosyncratic character. Do you recognize it from your time? Can you tell me that your first time meeting him there?
Well, I met him playing against this teams, Middlesbrough, Sheffield Wednesday. We actually the year we won the cup and seventy nine we had to play Sheffield Wednesday five times. Wow. In the cop in the third round that went, it went on and on and on until. So I got to know Jack a little bit from that you know. Yes. I really got to know him when he got the job in, in eighty six for Ireland you know.
Yes. We went to. Two poor campaigns on their own in the qualifying for 84 euros, not not a bad campaign, but not good either. And then a very, very poor campaign to qualify for the 86 World Cup. So there was going to be a change of manager. We thought John might be coming back, but that didn't materialize. And Jacques got the job. And I knew from the way Jacques played football, see, Jacques Chirac would have been a child shoes, disabled listeners without a child who was he was the director of coaching and education at the FFA.
And his his basic coaching blueprint for English football was to get the ball forward as fast as you can, get it into the box as much as you can and more you have more scoring opportunities and therefore score more goals, win more matches, very, very basic stuff. But Jacques was one of the people who who was around at the time of child abuse who bought into that. And there was a number of them. There were Howard Wilkinson would have been another one named Taylor.
They've basically they've Barsa at Wimbledon. Graeme Taylor certainly at Watford. Yes, without any doubt. So we the lads who like to play football, we could be in trouble with just getting the job and 86, you know. So, yes, I could tell, you know, he didn't he didn't particularly like the way I played. And then a couple of others he didn't. We talked about Dave alluded to that he didn't want his defenders playing out from the back.
But, you know, as a character, stubborn and very stubborn, stubborn at best and belligerent at worst. Yeah. Know. Yeah. And also could be engaging. And I think John's hinting about you could have a laugh with Jack. Yes, he was, he was quite funny and he could tell you good stories about his career and things like that. And you know, I enjoyed having a drink with him maybe in relaxation times and listening to his stories.
Yes. You know, to get the Irish job was an absolute dream for Jack because we only had about six games a year. So he could go fishing, shooting all you want. But yes, because that's what he looked I got the impression he didn't really love football. Yeah. It was a means to an end. To Jack. Yeah.
John, that's an interesting point. Just before we talk about that, that side of Jack there, the I mean, he had a channel for hunting, shooting and fishing program. He was on the first TV panel with Malcolm Wallace and then Paddy Cramond, which was very innovative and successful, the kind of idea that you'd get three former players talking about the game. He was on that and he was very forthright and blunt, but he did have a life outside of football and interests outside of football.
One of the things and just to go to what Liam's out there, John, I saw him doing an after dinner speech and he was unbelievably funny and brilliant. I could not believe it how good he was. And he made it look effortless. So there was that side of him, which is very curious.
Oh, yeah, it was a brilliant after dinner speaker. And so even the leads lads used to look forward to, you know, when so maybe give him a few words on behalf of the players. Yes, Jack, Jack was brilliant at it. A great sense of humour in that way essentially, and was made for the the after dinner speaker. Yes. You know, he wasn't he wasn't good for practical jokes with the lads or anything like that, you know.
Yeah. But he was excellent as you wouldn't expect him to be. Yes. You know, but but football was he would be decision. He loved it, loved his golf for a time, but he hit a bad shot and he was losing it. Walk off and off it like a big kid. At times it ought to be. Yeah, but like what his vision was. It was was was his main thing. Right. He could get out on his own.
Nobody knew. And he'd enjoy that now. Erm and can I tell you. Sorry about. Yeah. We used to play cards quite a bit on the Irish trips, you know, and we play this game called Hearts. Yeah. And Hearts was a game. It was for people played and you played with the full pack. Everybody got thirteen cards and you had to avoid getting the hearts and the queen of spades. You get the law, you just they were penalty points.
You had to avoid it. So it was a game that you had to remember. Every card had gone, you know, the best players could remember. Every card had gone, used to play with us, you know? Yeah. And one time he played he played the wrong card and everybody piled in on them and gave him a lot of penalty. And he went mad, as John said he'd walk off playing golf if he wasn't when he went mad, we were playing Tempy a point or something like that.
So we lost 100 points. You'd lose a tenner. And he loved this money, Jack. So, yeah, he was gone. He went mad. And I said to him, Jack, you played the wrong card. If you had to play the other card in your in your in your hand, you would have got away without getting it. Nor would know. And he got the cards, Aymen. And there was there was a window on the bus.
We there wasn't an air conditioned person. There's always windows. And he pulled the window open and he threw the cards out the window. And then and then the next day I went down for breakfast and he said, Come here, you. He said, you right about that card I show I played the wrong cut. He would never he would never admit it in front of people who did not know we had the same problem. Jack wasn't always right, but he was never wrong.
Yeah, I know he did. I've seen him do that. I did. I didn't play cards with the lads and Donlevy and the lads used to play cards and he did that loads of times and they used to play. It is some sort of a different game that you could you could play a card, support him out of it. And if somebody did that when he was winning, I can't forget. Sometimes he'd be winning and somebody would do that and he wouldn't be winning anymore.
More to go out the window. But yeah. Now, John, that was Jack. You just. Jack, Jack, Jack. Jack lived in the world of his own about Jack. Hamit. Yes, yeah, yeah. I'll tell you a little story about him as well. And I'll always describe Jack. If you were Jack. I was in Dublin and Jack was in Dublin. And I'd say to Jack, who's got the six o'clock flight next morning, Jack, I'll give you a lift out to the airport.
Oh, that's great. Yeah. Yeah. And. Say, for example, a very close friend, a relative died and that had to ring them at 10 o'clock at night and say, Jack, I won't be able to leave you out to the airport in the morning. Oh, for fuck's sake. I'm not going to get to the airport. That doesn't mean it wouldn't it wouldn't care about anything else. It was totally wrapped up and totally wrapped up in themselves.
Now, the of course, when England won the World Cup at 66, and that changed everything in some ways. It was, of course, the first time England won the World Cup, two brothers on the same team. And the following year in 1967, Jack was footballer the year John.
And yeah, I'm not sure that everyone thought that he was the football of the year.
Yeah. Tell me tell me about your reaction to it.
Well, the most emotional reaction to a joke was, Jack, was you couldn't get to the end of it, but it was a very clever guy as well. Payment and anything that was involved and involved himself was he was oh, he was close with the media, but yes, really close with the media lads. And this is what the story is about. That was in 1966, 66, 67. Jack won that football of the year with the sportswriters.
Now, if you look at Hugh Johnson, let's do this. But it was even but it was a huge honour at the time.
You said there was no class player of the year. It was it was a big it was a big honour. And that adds up to a huge, huge. And Jack and most of the players for the suffered and actually had most of the players didn't play well the next season. And I think that had a lot on the plate, whatever it was with Jack, Jack and the horses and the other the athletes. Yes. And you got football of the year.
Yeah. And the joke among us, Jack, was terrible time for to say that he was a terrible oversight player. But I would say to anybody was having a bad time in the flavor side or a bad time even playing. You know, what players are like. I don't think the joke was if you keep playing like that, you're going to get football. Yeah, yeah. And that was the way it was. It was it was amazing.
Now, he was obviously an advocate of the Charles Hughes way of coaching, which you describe very vividly and very, very good, actually.
Charles, Charles Hughes had an acronym for What Footballers How Football Played, was called Pomo Oppose Position of maximum opportunity was what they meant. And it's exactly what Liam said. You get it and you get it forward. You go into the parliament box and therefore you create a position of maximum opportunity very many times and eventually your opponents wilt. Now, I played against a lot of Graham Taylor teams. Lincoln Graham got them promoted through the leagues and I was down there in that sort of nether world of the lower divisions.
And he went to Watford. Graeme and I played against Watford teams. He did the same. He did it with great success. They were really hard to play against because you knew that it was going to be all in every minute of the game and they were tough as well. And that was Jack's football philosophy. Now, I know and you've told us many times about you and Billy coming back to get the ball off Jack, and he'd want to know about that.
How difficult how surprised were you? Because I know you hated Early Show. Jack was one of the first players to go to where the coaching courses were held, where Charles Hughes would hold court. I know you hated it. And the whole system. How did you reconcile that with having a relationship with Jack?
You were still playing for, you know, with difficulty and huge, huge difficulty.
Sally was taking know. And yes, that's what it's what it stood for. Yeah. And when you talk about the power money and our day when we were kids, it used to be called Kick and Rush. Yeah. But anyway, that's that's played with Jack. Very, very difficult time. And luckily enough done. Really wasn't the promo man. No, no. Right. Jack, Jack, Jack, Jack. We didn't agree with it at all.
Didn't agree. Jack had a thing in his head and it was his character as well. Jack saw the world through his own eyes and everything in football. Jack was a big center, half who was an excellent centre, half, but obviously like lots of seventh halves of his type. Right. Good on the ball. Yeah, well, good on the ball. So if Jack received the. On the edge of the box, right, you'd be in trouble.
Yes, right. So Jack saw everybody else like that. Billy Bremner, me. In other words, if we got them the we were going to lose it. So it didn't give us any credit for being able to play it better than him on the ball. Yeah, no credit whatsoever. You're gone. In other words, if you lose it, you're going to kick us to the goal, which is true. Yeah. With good players like his brother Bobby.
I said to him one time, this was Jack's philosophy on the game. Get it out of there. Right. You're going to lose it. If you lose it, they're going to cost us to go. Right. And I remember having endless rows about Jack over the years. And I remember saying to him one time, Jack, your Bobby wouldn't get in your team. He said it would if he did what I told them to do, but he wouldn't be Bobby anymore.
Jack with Jack. Jack believed in something and he believed you believed in it. And he firmly believed in that because we could win. I think I told you a few times with the lead saying Brabner myself to small fellas come up midfield players. Right. We could go seven, eight games, winning seven or eight games. Yeah. And everything would be fine. And we'd lose one game for a crisis meeting. Yeah. Big Jack straightaway. Anybody.
Yeah. I have those two little shit. Yeah. I go too far back for the ball. Yeah. Right. Nothing about us doing what we did to win the eight matches. So Jack's situation in his mind is well if you have that somewhere along the line, if you wait long enough you're going to be right.
Yeah. Yeah, of course he was.
And you wouldn't you would look, you know, down. We didn't believe in that. Yeah, I don't really believe. No, you used to say to Jack. Right, Jack, if you got the bomb that I want you to give it to them right now.
Let's go to his success. And as a manager, he went to Middlesborough. There were in the second division. And I was playing for all a very good Millwall team in the second season at the time. And in his first year as manager at De 73 74, they won the second division by fifteen points. Bobby Murdoch, he bought Grimsson AC Bobby Murdoch, who had been in the great Celtic team that won the European Cup, and a fellow from gold, Dave Hickton, who was a very good player.
And they won. They were they were magic. It was it was palm oil to perfection because Murdoch and soon as I had of class, but he couldn't get the ball up to Hegde and he'd hold it up, get up behind him. And they were very, very good team at Liem. You said, you know, you played against his teams. And certainly that Middlesborough team went on and they established themselves as a good, decent first division team did.
It wasn't like a yo yo club going up and then coming down again. I don't know how much you played against Graham or indeed Bobby Murdoch.
I would have played a couple of seasons against Jack the team, and they were a very, very tough to play against. You know, no nonsense, as you say, Bobby Morton and Graham Sounness in midfield to really hard tacklers, you know. Yeah, lads, you could get up and down the pitch. And as you say, you like to turn defenders around and then push open behind them. And Sounness and Murdoch had had great football and ability as well.
So they were a force. They didn't win anything in the fourth division, got them out of the secondary, didn't win anything in there off the top end when Jack was there. And there were a very tough team to play against. But when Jack I think when Sounness went to went to Liverpool, then that kind of team fell apart. And I think Jack Jack had an idea in his head as well that he didn't want to stay too long at football club.
You just move on after that, you know? Yeah. He went to Sheffield Wednesday. He went down the Sheffield Wednesday. Then he brought them up from the third to the second. Yeah, we played them in the clock again. It was very, very hard to play against them. Took us five games to beat them. Yes. Yeah. And then he went to Newcastle where it didn't work out for him, which was a shame because he's a Newcastle man, you know, he's a already.
And that didn't work out so to. But as I'm saying, to get the Irish job to jack down to the ground because, you know, six games a year, go and watch matches, go and watch the players playing in England and endless time to fish and shoot. Yes.
Just briefly, because the story's been told many times before he got shot by accident, John, there was a plot to get to get Bob Peisley. Yeah. And it was organised by somebody who I won't name, but a very senior official organised a coup and he had ten people. But there was 19 votes in the room. He had 10 people set up to vote for Paisley and the coup went wrong when the late Dr. Tony O'Neill of use today a very respected football person.
He didn't sign. He reneges and didn't get the job. In the first round, Jacques got three votes.
But the cat was out of the bag and the whole team became a shambles and ended up with Jacques by a process of elimination winning. They told Bob Paisley that they'd be ringing him that night to confirm that the deal was done. Well, they had to ring him and say, I'm sorry, but basically wasn't the greatest managers of all time.
But his record, you've not got it.
But they didn't have a number for Jacques and they couldn't find him and they couldn't find him until late on Saturday afternoon to tell him he'd got the Irish job.
You know that. Sorry, I take it, Liam. Yeah.
I didn't know how complex it was, to be honest statement, but we all thought John was going to get it. Yeah. And then and then, look, Paisley looked like a firebrand and the dock with Jack and, you know, quite a few of us. Oh, God. You know, what's what's going to happen now?
You know, we want to be fair to him, but on the Monday night in the Westbury, there was a press conference to introduce him to the press. And there was a huge crowd of press people there because Jack was a bigger than he was a World Cup winner, of course, but he'd been on Channel four. He was a big personality and it was a huge thing coming in after Owen and I was there as well. And the. Press conference, Congres and Peter Burn, who subsequently became very friendly with Jack, gives the Irish Times correspondent and wrote Jack's book actually later on.
But Peter Burns said towards the end of the press conference, by the way, did you know that you weren't the first choice for this job at that Bob Peisley was and that you only got a handful of votes in the first ballot and you actually looked at him and he was absolutely raging there? What's that got to do anything and burn sort of shrank. What making another of the great mistakes of my life, I said, hold on a minute, Jack is entitled to ask the question is only asked the question and he said, don't you start your little FOCA.
And I said, sorry, Jack is entitled to ask a question as a press conference. He said, Do you want to come outside now and settle this? So there was absolute murder in the room, but he wasn't it wasn't in a bad way when he just didn't get it. Now, for some unjam as familiar with journalists as Jack, you would have thought, you know, but happily, you've got me back on the right side of it for a yes.
But the thing else, with Jack, he didn't care how it happened. It suited him. Yeah, you know what I mean. Yeah. Yeah. I don't care and don't care about the history of the I mean, the man you're talking about that was does Casey at the time it was actually let him off. Quite likely, to be honest, because he was the president. Yeah, well, he was the president and he did a lot of well he did a lot of harm to me.
Yes. And utterly disrespectful to me. To me and to me. Yes. He actually asked me to put my name forward. So. Yes, that's right. That particular time. Yeah. And he knew he was going to use me. Yes. In in it that it was very hard to get down to it to two men who would be next managers. I said to Casey when he came to see me along with Tony knew at the time, I said, look, I'm not I'm not you can I put my name forward here?
Actually, you persuaded me a last name forward. Yeah. And I said, OK, I'll do it on one condition that as soon as you know, I'm not in the it. Yeah, just tell me and I'll drop out. Yes. He didn't do that. He did the very opposite. Yeah. He had Bob Peisley lined up. Yeah. He said he didn't tell me about it. Jack didn't know about it to be fair to him.
And what actually happened was there was a link to it, Jack Charlton and it it was in the up. Yeah, right. And in the first vote we got three votes each. That's right. About Peisley, Gotthard, something like that.
We got nine. You missed out by one. It was Tony ONeil who didn't vote for him.
No, no, that's not no. What happened was that was the first vote. Yeah. Brad Paisley had the job. Right, right. And desk. He said no, OK. What we do is, was to make it look good. In my opinion. What we'll do is we'll have another vote and you can pick one of the three lads, Jack myself, and name them and they'll go against the winner. OK, I had Tony on the change mind.
Oh, OK. I'm glad you came up. Paisley was out for a chat, got the job OK anyway to but anyway, I'm only I'm only explaining that because I still feel hot about that. And I told him to. We did. Yes. We were used in a big way. Yes. Which which was dreadful anyway.
I know it now is par for the course for Liam. His first he took over a team. I remember the first game. I don't remember your plan, but you may have it was at home to Wales. It was a friendly Ian Ross scored a goal. I thought. Well, I thought it was amazing that they instantly.
But the team had lost the previous game to Denmark for one, and had been Arabo at Landsdown, actually the last qualifying game. I was very impressed with the way he sat the team up and looked organised and ready to run. Were you were you there that day?
Yeah, I played in that much Landsdowne match. Yes, a lot of downs and was in a dreadful state after the after the BCS and, you know, the the home nations rugby season. And it was a dry day, windy. And it was horrible, horrible game to play in. And Rucci scored a goal and it was a horrible match, wasn't a very good game. I didn't have a particularly good game. And I thought, well, I won't be you know, my days are numbered here.
You know, I knew the way you wanted to play it. Set that out in the few days before the game against Wales. Right. You told the centre back he didn't want to go through midfield, told the midfield down, come back looking for the ball. And that's that's where it started. So I went I went back to Ascoli at the time. I went back to Italy and all of that Inter Milan, I went to the pharmacy.
Ascoli went when we kicked off the European Championships against Belgium, you know. Yeah. And I, I was really fit the trainer Ascoli. It really we don't have hard pre-season and was as I'd been, you know, I really felt good. So I didn't think I'd be playing against Belgium. As I said, I'll go, you know, I'll go and give it my best shot. I trained well, not that you could show too much in training because training was really, really basic.
It was like a shadow play. That's where you have your your team lined up. But there's no opposition. Yeah. Jaccard the centre backs kicking into that area between the eighteen yard box and the touchline. You know there's a there's a twenty yard square there. That's, that's what the centre backs up the aim for and Aldridge and stable and had to chase in there, get the ball, try and get our grip on the ball or make or make the Belgians make mistakes so we would win possession.
And there that's, that's the way training was. And we were lucky to get a five a side at the end. As John said, he didn't like five or so. He didn't like them as a coach either. And all the lads wanted to have a game, get a sweater on, you know, get sharp and things like that. So we had a five. So I know I trained well over the two days and he came to pick the team and we stood around on the on the on the Tuesday after training.
The game was on the Wednesday and he went through the team and he pointed at me and he said, Ian, be number six. And he was terrible with names. Names. Ian, you're a number six and then real number seven origin. I said, Jack, just a second. I said, Jack, I'm delighted. I'm playing. I said in Brady was the Moore's murder.
Nine was stable and ten I can't remember. Eleven was Tony. And we got a result. And I think I said to you on the program we did a couple of weeks ago, I didn't you know, I gave it my best shot for that. Yeah. And I started well, and he kept it kept going with me from then on, you know, through the whole qualifying campaign. But we were under no we're under no illusions. You know, how how how he how he wanted the game played.
You know, the training was that basic. Yeah. He told the centre backs we'd lined up. And if you weren't in the team, which is terrible, you'd be standing around watching, you know, not doing anything. And then he also what he did was concentrate greatly on set pieces for and against. Yes. And that's where we became very, very good at that. Yes. And what happened was we started to get a few results.
We drew away to Belgium. We do know that of the Scotland we put we started to erm friendlies, we started to win them and things like that, and the lads began to buy into it, you know. Yes. They bought into it. And by the time the, the campaign finished and we quite like we batted Bulgaria two nil at home but we didn't expect the. Qualified factories was only 20000 that landed down, you know. Yes, they failed, thought Bulgaria was a shoo in to qualify.
So but we did barter them and he had got his philosophy across to the players and and he had some good players and he had some really, really good players. He did that players that in my opinion, if John had a hard, he would have done equally as well. But we love Nobley. You'll never know ever know that. It's just it's just my opinion. But he did have some really, really good players. You know, we talked about him the other day, Paul Megraw and Andy Pounds and Mark Williams and John Aldridge, like Aldridge, hardly scored a goal for us to you know, I think it was in 20 games before he scored a goal and he was banging them left, right and center for Liverpool.
So that kind of tells you the game that Jack wanted to play. We weren't going to make chances for Aldridge. We weren't going to slip him in. We weren't going to find a near post cross for him to go out on the end of. It wasn't like that. Jack had this way of playing and it was efficient and it was very, very difficult for the opposition teams to play against.
Yes. And just from your own perspective, as a gifted footballer, one of the most gifted has been how difficult how much of a heartbreaker was it to be getting up behind the long? But I mean, John always famously said his legs would be down to stumps. It's hard to keep making those runs down to go into that position of maximum opportunity. It's called limb. That's square. Yeah. Yeah.
Well, it was a kind of hybrid version of what Jack wanted, that because we had players in the team like Lawrence and McGrath and myself, you know, we weren't just going to boot. You know, we were going to look for people. We're going to switch to play and then think about Jack. I could see him on the sidelines and that. But if I got a ball from, let's say I picked it up in midfield and hit a ball to Ray Howard and hit a 20 to 30 yard ball to reach out to his feet, I wouldn't say nothing now.
Jack just wouldn't say no if I tried to roll, went into Aldridge's feet and it got the centre back in front of him and took it away and we lost possession. It go he'd go apeshit, you know. Yeah.
Yeah, John knows that. Yes, totally. I mean, when you look at it well, in my opinion, anyway, as Liam says there, if you hit a good ball. OK, yeah, so Jack, as a manager, couldn't lose, you wouldn't say anything if you hit a good ball, but it worked. Yeah, we hit a bad one. Yeah I said no. I told you. Yeah, that's what you shouldn't be doing.
Gentlemen, what he did do. Aymond and that person, I never realized at the time and money that personality is a huge thing in it. Yes. Jack didn't care about anybody. He wouldn't listen to anybody. Yeah. He gave leadership. Yes. Yes. He didn't leave any stone unturned. You could say with Jack. You didn't you didn't say this. He didn't say that. You said that. He did it did what he believed in.
Yes. And he made sure everybody, even Liam got into it had to. Not that you had to buy into it. Yes. Right. It didn't buy into it. You were out right now because I would play ten years, which actually I know exactly what it was like because it was a struggle every week. Look, you know, he wasn't the manager at the done meetings. The manager lead and done maybe would say to him, no, Jack, I want you to give it to Bremner.
Giles. Yes, I am insistent on you doing it. Now, when Jack became manager, he wouldn't unless it was half joking. Bobby wouldn't get a word if he did what I told him to do. Yeah. Which would be not good and did not get not it wouldn't be Bobby Charlton anymore. Just like Liam Brady wasn't Liam Brady anymore. Jack gave leadership. He left. It didn't move anybody in any doubt was a player. And this is what he wants.
This is what we have to do. And that's what he and that's what he was good at.
Yeah. I want and I want to go back to Liam just to talk about this. I think we've discussed this before, Liam, just over a beer. But I remember a key match against Spain at Landsdowne Road as it then was, bad pitch, windy day. And we won Manil. It was a huge win and qualifying this for whatever it was. But the Spanish players were coming off the pitch and shaking their heads because they had such a torrid time.
And it was a part of Jack's philosophy that our belief system that really was troubling for European players, that is, you're knock it in behind the defenders, you get them turned facing their own goal. You get right under our noses and you make it really hard. You don't give them time to play out from the back. All of that stuff was innovative and effective. Did you play in that game against Spain?
No, I didn't know. And by this time I had not gone to the year. Well, I went to the euro, but I didn't go as a player. I was I got myself badly injured. I ruptured my cruciate ligament, so. Right. I wasn't I wasn't involved for another year before I got a chance to to get back in the team. Yeah, I was. I was I was I was part of the squad in that game.
I don't think I was. So I was part as well. But I was on edge. Yeah. I mean, I had the grass, he had the grass about three or four inches long and he told the groundsman to not cut the grass, you know, so the Spanish. The Spanish hated it. They hated it. Yes. And it worked. Yeah. Worked because we were we were trying to qualify for the World Cup and to qualify it in those days, you know.
Yes, Spain. Spain had beaten us two nil away and we had to finish a finish above Hungary and Northern Ireland to get the second spot. And we did that and we did it quite comfortably. Yeah, playing playing, as you say, the way you wanted to play. Yeah.
Now, here's the thing to both of you. I go to you first, then the players we mentioned the players, Jaccard were extraordinary, Mark and Paul McGrath and David O'Leary, who blanked for three years. But he had Ronnie Wheelin, he had Stapleton, he had John Aldridge ID, Ray Hamilton, both of whom he persuaded to play for Ireland. They were playing for Oxford, I think. And so a Kevin Morgan aid make the currency he had.
Strengths are all over the place. Kevin Sheedy.
So he was a classy player. Yeah. And by that time, the World Cup qualifying crowd around towns and sent the team, he was another another on Townsend was an outstanding midfield player. I mean, you know, he had some he had some really, really top footballers in his team, but not playing in the positions that they played for.
And they were doing the for example, we had a big victory in Scotland. We won one nil, Mark Lawrence and playing in midfield scored the winning goal. Ronny, we played left back that night. I don't know where Paul McGrath played.
Maybe McGrath played right back, right? Yeah. They had a very good left winger called Davie Cooper, so they can give him a kick. Yes, Paul. Paul was outstanding. Yeah. I think I said to you before, that was probably the best Irish team I played. You know this? Yeah, all round Irish team. Yes, it really was. We have Tony Galván on the left wing, right out and on the right wing.
Yeah, you could go past people, but work for the team myself. And Mark, we're in the middle of the field and McCartin more and we're at the back pocket Zingo, you know, so and then the team got even better. You know, Auldridge emerged as a top striker then, as I'm saying, I'm repeating myself, Andy Towns and Niall Quinn. Yeah, cos Big Kashkari, no red region. He really had some John Sheridan really good players to pick from now, I think.
And I would say some people who say he would say that anyway, I think we could have played another way and got probably. As much success as Jack did, or even more, but nobody will ever know that no one, you can't prove a negative, as they say. But, John, and when you look at the players Jaccard, compared to the players you had, you know, it was just it was you know, it's it's something it was 10 years, particularly the first seven or eight of them, something golden gone to Germany and qualifying for the euros in 88, beating England for, you know, first time and and also the whole sort of party atmosphere.
He created the sort of joy he gave the nation really in so many ways that anyone trying to make the points that Liam and I have been making, that you've been making and we don't in any way want to be unfair to Jacques because you can't sort of prove that we would have done better. But I just want to ask you, John, in particular, you could say Jacques was eccentric in certain ways, but there was a basic decency I found about him and I was at the end of a lot of lashings from him.
But that's, you know, another day's work, as it were. I would say Jacques was a decent guy at it. And we used to go and have a drink with him for a couple of years before I go on to David Leary's situation, which was wrong in its own way. But he's a decent guy, John.
Yeah, I like Jack. Yeah. I think Jack is a state character. These are in many ways, it's very, very selfish. We're all very anybody very with. But to go back to the football side of it. And Jack did what he did and he believed in what he did. I think it was halfway right. You could have done what you did, in my opinion. Yes. I'd still be able to play. Yeah, you know what I mean.
Like in football, there's two things is when you have the ball, you don't have the ball and go back in. I've always said from time began when I started playing football and I'm square when you have the ball, everybody's oblation, your team to make an effort to get it back, which is called putting them under pressure. Yeah, right. The second thing is when you have the ball, you're obliged to use it. As well as you possibly can under any circumstance, in other words, the center back on this unmistakeably kicks it out, otherwise you're obliged to use the ball as best you possibly can.
And what my objection to Jack would be in a football sense. I like him as a person of football sense. I didn't agree at all with what he did, which was to concentrate entirely on getting the ball back. And my opinion was, well, if you use it, well, then you don't have to work as hard to get it back because you have the ball right now.
That was my. Yeah, no, absolutely.
That was in other words, he had it half right and we didn't have the ball. Yeah. I'm getting it back and putting them under pressure. We were the best team in the world. Yes. The best team in the world. And if you've got a team doing that, you're not going to lose many matches. Now, if you got them playing as well with the players we had, which was always my objection that we could have done what we did anyway with the players we had, like Liam and and the talented Mr.
Ripley players we had, we could have done better than we did. Yeah. And that's was always and it's still a that's still my thing, too. But I think Jack did a big job in many ways. He led the team, as I said before, he was a leader. He didn't leave it open to anybody what he wanted to do. This is what I want you to do. And that's what managers do. Yeah. Now, I don't agree with it, but that's only my opinion because the team was successful.
But I, I think we could have been more successful than we were. Yeah.
And I just want to make the point about them. You were Italian 90, working for the BBC. You were at the back end of your career and you'd have serious injury. But Ronny Wheelin, for example, and saying to both of you, to you and John Ronnie had just captained Liverpool to win at the first division. Ronnie was really, really outstanding player. And he didn't play in the whole tournament. Jack just took against him in some way.
And we could have done with Ronnie in any match. Ronnie Williams was at such a great player.
He just was a terrible shame because Ronnie was at the top of his game. But he picked up an injury later on in the season before before the World Cup. Wasn't we just getting over it? And then I think and then he told me he was a bit. Yeah, but in training, I actually actually talked to Ronnie do the day about this same because I really wanted to be sure, you know. Yes, I gave him a ring and Ronnie set in train and he got a bit of a tie strain.
So he had to miss the forest game against England in Sardinia. Yeah, but then he was fit well, because Jack had got the draw and we started. Well, he kept he kept Ronnie out. Ronnie only got on against Holland in the last twenty minutes and he didn't he didn't figure it goes to Romania and in the last 16 games. So Ronnie's career, a bit like my Ronnie has, has this kind of disappointment that he didn't get to play, you know, at the very highest level in the World Cup.
We only played twenty minutes and I have that disappointment as well. But I think it's if a footballing manager had been in charge, I might have played I might have gone to Italy and played. And that worked well, I'm sure I just got moved on, you know. Yeah.
A final points to both of you. John David O'Leary was asked by Jack when Jack got the job. Now, David was a great footballer, lovely. Comfortable with the bowler's feet. Very quick round the game. Really? Well, it was one of the best halves in Europe, really. He didn't really want that kind of thing. He asked David to go on a pre-season to present to him in Iceland. David said, no more holidays. You'd left me out in the beginning.
I'm not going. Ronnie Whelan and John Aldridge and I think it's a couple of others also decided not to go. And they'd have they were going to hold us, David, back in for three years because of that. He said, now, that was a wrong on David, a bad round, wasn't it? David didn't even go to to the 1988 European Cup finals.
What he wouldn't want. No, you wouldn't want him. Yeah, it wouldn't want them. It doesn't he would see Dave losing the ball. And at the back at the back, he would see him lose and about to him on the ball, losing the ball. Yes, I played him for ten years and yeah, every time we lost umbrella, I in particular. You're coming too deep. Yeah. What about the matches we want. That's all I could say.
Yeah. Jacket as an individual who saw the right to life through his own eyes. Yeah. And he saw football through his own eyes. Yeah. He couldn't see and truly embrace his eyes. Now about the child into his eyes. No great leadership. And as you say, with the selection of players that we had, yes, I don't think Jack ever recognized, I realized the players we had to be honest. I just asked a question about the mark he left on the nation.
Through those great summer adventures, 88 in 1990 and again in 1994, with this extraordinary performance, a giant stadium, when when we built a really good Italian team that actually got to the final of that World Cup, I'd just like to ask you, Liam, first. And Anjan, my overall feeling is that there were two things happening. There was us as football people making footballing judgments. And then there was a very sort of happy, proud nation celebrating an Irish team being at a major championship, you know, for the first time in eighty eight for this first World Cup in 1990, beating Italy in Giants Stadium, people having barbecues.
Everyone was an expert on the game. The guy from Mobile, Arnold Allburn, one of them was on was on The Late Late Show after I think Italia 90 and Gay burned the late gay guy, addressed him and welcomed Arnold on the say onto the SAT and said, congratulations on winning the World Cup. I said, I'll do my hair out, but I just want to put it to both of you, because I know you know the country.
You love the country, Liam. He gave more than he took. And some people for some people, that era is is remembered with great fondness.
Well, it was our big breakthrough. You know, it's been said before, but we never played in the European Championship or a World Cup before. We never got there. Yeah, it was a huge breakthrough looking to get there. And 88 in the forest world like Scotland beat and Bulgaria, nobody expected. But when he took us to Stuttgart and we beat England and and we had a really good tour and we were only 15 minutes away from being in the semi-final.
Yes, we were beaten by a fluke. Then we went on to qualify for a World Cup and go to the World Cup. And as you say, you know, go, go, go, go to the quarterfinals like we were on the world stage there and tell you what it also did was that it made FIFA realize, oh, Ireland, it's great to have them at the World Cup. Yes. So all those decisions that we were dodgy decisions that were going against us in the 80s and all those things disappeared.
We were getting the rubber, the green now. Yeah. So Jacques had a phenomenal ten years with phenomenal ten years. And I would agree wholeheartedly with John that he was a leader. You knew where you stood and it was a good team spirit and it was a good atmosphere amongst the players. The players were happy playing underneath them, you know. Yes. So he brought us to the promised land, there's no doubt about that. And then we've been at another World Cup with Mick McCarthy in 2002.
Let's hope we can get to another level, because that's where the that's where the country belongs. And you have to give Jack an enormous amount of credit for that.
Yeah, John. And on this day, his fifth birthday, we should wish him and as much happiness as is possible. And he gave Ireland a lot more than he took.
And it took it took a fair few quid. So that's okay.
I'm going to take now, Damian, you've got to give him full credit for what I'm talking about purely as a football man. Yeah. What could have been better. But I realize that the contribution he made to the country. Yes. What I've always said about Jack was that he popularized the game in Ireland in a way that nobody had ever done before. Yes. In the meantime, it did antagonize certain football people to follow the game for a long, long time before the people copped on to what the game was all about.
In our way. We play for Ireland on the map in the football sense, but in a social sense as well, because he made an awful lot of people happy. Who cares about what I thought that we could have done better. That doesn't matter. Yeah, he made the country happy. It brought us to the first competition we'd ever been to before. Major competition, which was which was brilliant. It didn't make all the football people happy.
I don't think it made you happy in the way that we played. But the way that the nation got behind the team in the country to do what we did was fantastic.
OK, and that's a perfect place to end a podcast. So I am sure for many people we'll bring back very fond memories. We wish Jack a very happy 80th birthday. And I'm very grateful to John Giles. Answer Lynn Brady for joining me to pay tribute to a remarkable man.
That's all we have time for now. We'll talk to some.