When Taylor turned the tables upside down

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Q. Judged by the difference in League places between the position the club was in when he arrived and when he left, who is the best Football League manager of all time? And the worst?

A. Surely Graham Taylor's first stint as Watford manager proves him to be the best club manager in history. Taylor took over at Vicarage Road in the summer of 1977. During the previous season (76/77) Watford had slumped to an all-time low by actually making it to the bottom of the Fourth Division - 92nd in the Football League. By the time Taylor left for Aston Villa in June 1987 the Hornets had made it to the runner's-up position in the old First Division - an increase of 90 places. Taylor had established Watford as a top-eight club, a feat unrivalled by any manager. He is, I believe, about to repeat that feat in his second time as manager at Watford.

Gladys Protheroe,


A. The biggest "negative place difference" of which I am aware is Terry Dolan's "minus 41" recorded in taking Hull City from 24th in the old Second Division when he took over in February 1991 to 17th in the new Third Division when he finally left the Tigers in the summer of 1997.

Steve Weatherill,



Q. The two greatest horses in National Hunt racing over the last 50 years are Arkle and Red Rum. What is the origin of the names of these two greats?

Kevin Maguire, Batley

Q. Considering that the race (ie the British Grand Prix) would merely be replaced by another event overseas, how did the Formula One bosses calculate that 50,000 jobs would go if we abolished tobacco sponsorship?

Tim Mickleburgh,


If you know the answers to any of these questions or have a sporting question of your own, write to Q&A, Sports Desk, Independent on Sunday, 1 Canada Square, London E14 5DL. Fax: 0171-293 2894