Stacey West XI Wingers (1975/76 special)

Three more wingers for you today and, hopefully, three who will please the purists amongst you. If you weren’t overly pleased to see colour photos on the last article, rest assured there’s very few on this one.

Please also remember this: I DO NOT PICK THESE PLAYERS. They’ve been nominated by you, via Twitter and via the blog. I keep getting messages saying ‘you’ve missed such and such Gary’. I haven’t, trust me. You have.

I do apologise for the quality of some of the photos, I have a scrap-book kept by a relative of the 1975/76 season and some of the pictures have come from there. They may be a little grainy, but it’s the best I could do. Incidentally, the featured picture is of the man on page three, the player you’ll all be voting for no doubt.

As for Tony Woodcock, primarily a striker, I did say players had to have a certain amount of appearances for City and Woodcock doesn’t qualify I’m afraid. Also, I want to be guided by you. Gordon Hobson: winger or striker?

Anyway, here’s three bloody brilliant players that I never got the pleasure of watching in action.

Dick Kryzwicki

Ryszard Lech Krzywicki, born in Wales to Polish parents, had perhaps let the best of his career pass him by when he signed for City. He had Welsh international caps, eight of them to be precise, and in April 1970 he scored for Wales against then World Champions England. He was the first substitute to ever enter the field of play for West Brom in a League Cup game, as well as the first to be withdrawn in an FA Cup game.

He was always on the fringes at West Brom and not long after his historic goal past Gordon Banks, he left the Baggies and joined Huddersfield for a club record fee of £45,000, which has obviously since been beaten. He banged in a couple of goals to help them win the Second Division title, meaning in 1971 he was a First Division player. By 1973 successive relegation saw the Terrier slip to the Third Division for the first time in their history and after spells at Scunthorpe and Northampton, Dick Kryzwicki joined Lincoln City in Division Four. In the summer of 1975, Huddersfield Town also joined us in the basement division.

In his first season, City missed out on promotion by goal difference, with the flying Welshman making 34 appearances and scoring eight times. He scored in consecutive games against Darlington away (4-1 win), Shrewsbury away (4-1 win) and Torquay at home (3-1 win). When he then set up a goal as we beat Doncaster 4-0 at the Bank and added his fourth in five games as we beat Barnsley away, a new hero was born. He signed off the season with a goal at Southport as we missed out on promotion, having missed just six league matches.

The following season, 1975/76, might be one you’ve heard a bit about. Krzywicki’s campaign was affected by hamstring and groin trouble, problems which were later traced to a problem with his back. He still made 21 starts, scoring seven times. Usually playing on the right flank, his most important goal of the season came after a switch by Graham Taylor. On March 17th, nearest rivals Northampton Town came to the Bank needing something to stop us in the title chase, and Taylor switched Kryzwicki to the centre of attack. He promptly picked up the ball, ran half the length of the pitch and grabbed our second goal of a 3-1 win. It wasn’t his last goal in City colours, that came against Stockport a few weeks later, but it was his last at the Bank. Two days later he started through the centre against his old side Huddersfield, but was forced off and replaced by Percy Freeman, himself having been a victim of injury.

The injuries forced his retirement from the game at the start of the following season, his start for Lincoln coming away at Doncaster in the League Cup. Injury forced him out of the second leg, and his final appearance curiously came at Nottingham Forest’s City Ground in the replay after our aggregate draw with Doncaster.

Krzywicki later returned to Huddersfield to work as their Football in the Community Officer.

6 Comments

  1. Yep Dave Smith and Roger Holmes, 2 great players. I believe Tottenham were after Holmes but he broke his leg.
    He turned up at the young supporters and i couldn’t believe he smoked. If only you could put all the past great players in one team.
    I loved Big Piercy Freeman and Dixie Mcneil, but Dave Smith takes my award. A fantastic player who could of played at a much higher level. I’m lucky to have seen him grace Sincil Bank many times

  2. All three of those wingers would be in my top ten footballers that have ever played in the red and white. I loved them all.

  3. Whizzer, the magnificent Harding (scorer of the best goal I’ve seen at SB) and the wonderful Dave Smith, at last. Wonder how many of those appearances were while on the transfer list, he was always agitating for a move before settling down under GT and becoming the greatest central midfielder I’ve seen play for City.

    George Shipley to follow? Sorry Sir Gareth, you may not make the last 4.

    Hobbo? Stunning arrival as a winger, but best years as a striker in those lethal partnerships with Harford and Bell (Derek, not the god botherer!)

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