Mick's Football Memories

Mick’s Football Memories – part 25

The 1973/74 season saw Knebworth become Herts. County League Premier Division Champions, this is something they have been unable to repeat ever since. Mount Grace Old Scholars won Division One, Bedmond Social Reserves Division Two and Mount Grace Old Scholars Reserves Division Three. Rolls Royce Engines prevented Knebworth from completing the double by defeating them 2-0 in the Aubrey Cup Final. Knebworth Reserves finished disappointingly near the foot of the Division One table.

Hitchin Town again finished in mid table in the Isthmian League Division One with Stevenage Athletic finishing a much improved seventh in the Southern League Division One (North).

In the FA Cup Hitchin Town reached the Second Round Proper losing narrowly at Boston United by one goal to nil. If they had won that match they would have been drawn at home to Derby County in the Third Round. Derby County were at this time one of the top teams in the country, managed by Brian Clough and Peter Taylor.

This was also the year of the very last Amateur Cup with Hertfordshire side Bishop’s Stortford defeating Ilford 4-1 in the Final, as amateur status was then abolished. A new competition for clubs which were not eligible to enter the FA Trophy was introduced for the following season, to replace the Amateur Cup, this was the FA Vase.

Two other items which did not escape my attention were firstly that Wolves won the Football League Cup Final, defeating strong favourites Manchester City, who included Colin Bell, Francis Lee and Mike Summerbee in their team by two goals to one and secondly that a very good Dutch side led by Johann Cruyff, playing wonderfully attractive attacking football were edged out 2-1 in the World Cup Final by hosts West Germany. Four years later the same thing would happen again in Argentina, where Holland still playing the same entertaining football lost out to the hosts 3-1 in the final after extra time.

Little did I know it at the time but as the 1974/75 season approached it would prove to be life changing for me.

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