Search

FA Cup 1980: Paul Allen recalls making history

PUBLISHED: 15:00 11 May 2020

Paul Allen celebrates West Ham's 1980 FA Cup final win over Arsenal (pic Steve Bacon)

Paul Allen celebrates West Ham's 1980 FA Cup final win over Arsenal (pic Steve Bacon)

Archant

Paul Allen became the youngest player to appear in an FA Cup Final for 101 years when West Ham upset Arsenal in 1980.

West Ham United's Geoff Pike and Paul Allen celebrate with the FA Cup. (l-r) Alvin Martin, David Cross, Geoff Pike, Paul Allen, Billy Bonds, Alan Devonshire, Paul Brush, Ray Stewart and Frank Lampard.West Ham United's Geoff Pike and Paul Allen celebrate with the FA Cup. (l-r) Alvin Martin, David Cross, Geoff Pike, Paul Allen, Billy Bonds, Alan Devonshire, Paul Brush, Ray Stewart and Frank Lampard.

Allen was a mere 17 years and 256 days old on that sunny summer day, when Trevor Brooking’s header put paid to the Gunners and brought the silverware back to the East End.

And Allen has fond memories of that unforgettable day at Wembley Stadium.

He said: “It was a tremendous day, especially for my parents who had helped me so much.

“I’d been in the youth team the year before but got in the side in September and played all the way through to the final.”

Paul Allen with the FA Cup in Est HamPaul Allen with the FA Cup in Est Ham

Despite his tender years, Allen revealed a distinct lack of pre-match nerves ahead of the big derby.

“I wasn’t nervous at all. John Lyall named the team on the Friday after training and we stayed in a hotel in Hendon the night before,” he added.

You may also want to watch:

“I think you’re a little fearless at that age. I was full of confidence, playing in a side that included Alvin Martin, Billy Bonds, Alan Devonshire, Phil Parkes, Trevor Brooking and Stuart Pearson.”

And although it wasn’t the best of finals, Allen had no complaints, not even about that tackle by Willie Young, which denied him a likely second goal.

“To be involved and win against a quality side like Arsenal was an excellent experience,” he said.

“We had some tremendous support on the day and I wasn’t too bothered about the tackle. It had little effect on the result as we went on and won and I was so excited.

“Every moment over the whole weekend was a super experience. The big banquet in London after the game and the bus-top ride.

“Coming up through the youth team at my local club gave me a really good foundation as a footballer.”

Allen went on to play in two more FA Cup finals with London rivals Tottenham, suffering a shock defeat at the hands of Coventry in 1987, before beating Nottingham Forest in 1991.

“I didn’t want to lose again. As I was coming to the twilight of my career, to get back to Wembley and win again was a great achievement,” he said of his second winners’ medal, 11 years after that great day in Hammers history.


If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the East London Advertiser. Click the link in the yellow box below for details.

Latest East London Sports News

Yesterday, 17:00

England’s three-match Ashes series with Australia has been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Yesterday, 16:12

West Ham United Women’s Katharina Baunach has announced her retirement from football.

Yesterday, 09:56

The British Basketball League has announced that the remainder of the 2019-20 season has been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Yesterday, 09:00

With sport slowly starting to return across the globe during the coronavirus pandemic, why not test your sporting knowledge with another quiz?

Yesterday, 07:49

The Sky Bet Championship is set for a June 20 resumption after the English Football League agreed on a provisional return date.

Saturday, May 30, 2020

The Government has issued health and safety guidelines which will pave the way for elite sport to return behind closed doors in England from Monday.

Saturday, May 30, 2020

Cricket West Indies has granted approval in principle for the proposed Test tour of England in July as the return of international cricket moves closer.

Saturday, May 30, 2020

Rounders England has developed a new family-friendly version of the game that can be played in small groups.

PROMOTED CONTENT

The Government is encouraging people to stay alert as many take their first steps back to their workplace.

The Government has announced an unprecedented package of support to protect jobs and support business across the UK during the coronavirus outbreak.

People working for a wide range of private companies have been standing side-by-side with public sector staff on the front line during the coronavirus outbreak.

Most read sport

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Docklands and East London Advertiser
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now

Most Read

Latest from the East London Advertiser