Sport: Q & A - The Reds' cold war on transfers . . . and football wanderlust

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The Independent Online
Q. Who was the last player to go directly from Liverpool to Manchester United, or vice versa?

A. The last player to make the move was Phil Chisnall, who went from United to Liverpool for pounds 25,000 almost 30 years ago. A former England Under-21 international while at Old Trafford, he made just six appearances for Liverpool. To find a player who made the trip in the opposite direction you have to go back to Ted Savage in December 1937. He made three appearances for United. Only three players - Tom Miller (1920), Tom Reid (1929) and Savage - have moved from Liverpool to United. - Stephen F Kelly, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester.

A. Phil Chisnall played for United from 1961-62 to 1963-64, making 47 appearances and scoring 10 goals. After Liverpool, he moved on to Southend United and finally Stockport County, where he finished his career in 1971-72. - Dave Pearce, Winford, Bristol.

A. Apart from Phil Chisnall, the only other United player since the war to move to Anfield was the full-back Tom McNulty in 1954, for pounds 6,000. - Michael Crick, Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire.

A. Several players have been on the books of both clubs, Peter Beardsley being the most famous. Andrew Harrison, London N8.

A. In February 1945 a Liverpool wing-half arrived at a war-scarred Old Trafford - one Matt Busby, who turned down the opportunity of coaching Liverpool to manage United. Probably his last bad decision. - P A Clarke, Wallasey, Merseyside.

Q. Recently, Nigel Mansell held both the Formula One championship and the IndyCar championship for all of one week. Is he the first to hold them simultaneously?

A. Yes. The only other drivers to hold both titles were Mario Andretti (Formula One champion in 1978, IndyCar champion in 1965, '66, '69 and '84) and Emerson Fittipaldi (Formula One champion in 1972 and 1974 and IndyCar champion in 1989). - John Cooper, Bridlington.

A. Surely the really astounding fact is not that Mansell did it, but that in both championships the runners-up were Brazilian, Ayrton Senna and Emerson Fittipaldi. Odds against that? - Clive Collins, Little Wenham, Suffolk.

Q. Which Formula One driver has gained most points in a season, and when?

A. Nigel Mansell. In his 1992 Championship year he amassed 108 points, with all 16 races counting towards the title. In previous seasons drivers had only been allowed to count a certain number of results out of the total number of races. Before 1992 the highest scorer was Alain Prost, who in 1988 scored 105, of which 87 were allowable as his best 11 scores out of 16. That was not enough to beat Ayrton Senna who, though he scored 'only' 94 points maximum, took his first title with 90 from his best 11 scores. - David Tremayne, Harrow.

Q. Can anyone explain why most of the first results that appear on the Grandstand printer each week are from Scottish matches?

A. They have shorter half-times north of the border. - Tim Mickleburgh, Grimsby, Lincolnshire.

A. As everyone knows, the Scottish game is played at a quicker pace] - Bryan Prudham, Newcastle upon Tyne.

Q. Which sport has the fewest professional players in Great Britain?

A. I currently jointly hold the English and the Scottish Pairs tiddlywinks titles, and I can confirm that in winks there are no professional players. - Richard Moore, Cleethorpes, Lincolnshire.

A. Crossbow Target Shooting has no professional participants in this country. Enthusiasts pay their own way to events both at home and abroad, achieving considerable (but largely unsung) success for Britain over the years.

Our recent European Championships at the National Sports Centre, Lilleshall, provided an interesting contrast with the England football team, who were training on the adjacent field. All dedicated to their sports, many of them achieving great things - yet separated by thousands of pounds. - Elizabeth Allison, Sutton Coldfield.

A. There are no professionals in cycle speedway in Great Britain, or, indeed, the world. The sport retains the Corinthian spirit even in international competition, where British participants, although receiving some help from the Sports Council and bodies such as the Sports Aid Foundation and local authorities, have to pay their own way or find sponsorship. - Martin Gamble, Chesterfield (Hon Press Officer, British Cycle Speedway Council).

Q. Readers recently debated the decline of speedway. For this Sixties child, rainy Saturday afternoons were brightened by scrambling. The only marque I can remember is (my spelling) Husque Varna; riders, sadly, not one. Who and what were the stars? When did television drop this spectacular contrivance? Why?

A. Arthur Lambkin was on every scrambling programme going, pre- colour TV. It was a great, exciting show. - Alison Winstone, Leicester.

Q. Which footballer has turned out for most league teams, not including wartime guest appearances but including periods on loan? My money is on John Burridge, Justin Fashanu or Wayne Entwistle.

A. Of players still in the professional game last season, Winston White, the Leicester-born striker, must take some beating. In a career spanning 16 years, White has played for Leicester City, Hereford United, Chesterfield, Port Vale, Stockport County, Bury, Rochdale, Colchester United, Burnley, West Bromwich Albion, Carlisle United, Doncaster Rovers and Wigan Athletic, making 529 League appearances, an average of 40 games per club. - N P Lovejoy, Shenley Brook End, Buckinghamshire.

A. Winston White was released by Wigan at the end of last season, having appeared in their last 12 games, at the age of nearly 35. He may well add to this list. Incidentally, Bobby Gould of West Bromwich Albion was the only manager to pay a transfer fee for him. - Adrian Pritchard, Lichfield, Staffs.

A. Barry Siddall has played for 13 League sides, one better than Burridge's 12 (17 October). He has kept goal for Bolton Wanderers, Sunderland, Darlington, Port Vale, Blackpool, Stoke City, Tranmere Rovers, Manchester City, Stockport County, Hartlepool United, Carlisle United, Chester City and Preston North End. - Michael Crick, Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire.

A. A word of mention is due to the Spurs goalkeeper Kevin Dearden. Although almost 20 years younger than John Burridge he is only two clubs behind him. Since 1988-89 he has had loan spells at nine other clubs - Cambridge United, Hartlepool, Oxford United, Swindon, Peterborough, Hull City, Rochdale, Birmingham City and Portsmouth. - Jim Heath, London W9.


Q. At Exeter recently, when Reading won 6-4, five players were on hat- tricks at the final whistle. Is this a record? - Will Hasler, Cirencester.

Q. Has any English football team fielded a side for a competitive match consisting entirely of players from a single country other than England? - Joan Langton, Southport, Merseyside.

Q. On 28 August, Bristol Rovers fielded a team that doubled up on names three times: two Justins (Skinner, Channing), two Lees (Archer, Maddison) and two Marcuses (Browning and Stewart). At the time they were apparently claiming a Football League record. Since then, Rovers have fielded a team with the same Lees and Marcuses and three Ians (Alexander, McLean and Wright). Is this a record, and which first name has appeared most times on the same score sheet? - Liz Loxley, Bristol.

Q. One of the first things Graham Taylor did on becoming England manager was to drop Steve Bull from the international squad. Does anyone know the respective scoring rates of the so-called 'strikers' used by Taylor compared to Bull's? - N C Thorneycroft, Chesham, Bucks.

Q. In the last 20 years, in terms of coaches and managers the Football League has been dominated by ex- West Ham players, or so it would seem - Greenwood, Lyall, Hurst, Peters, Curbishley, Redknapp, Bond, Bonds and many more. Is there any way of establishing this fact? - Richard L Phillips, London SW6.

Q. When and why was goal average changed to goal difference? - David W McCririck, Weymouth, Dorset.

Q. As a lifelong West Ham fan, I remember Jim Standen, who played in goal in the mid-Sixties and also played first-class cricket for Worcestershire. I assume the Compton brothers are the most famous double performers. Who else can readers add to this list, and has there ever been a treble performer? - Brian Shearing, Reading, Berks.

Q. Burnley's recent win at Bradford City ended an extraordinary run. In the season's first 11 games they won all six home matches and lost all five games away. What is the longest such sequence? - Michael Smithson, Bedford.

If you know the answers to any of these questions, or have a sporting question of your own you would like answered, write to:

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