When England won the World Cup in 1966, Manchester United and Scotland striker Denis Law was playing golf

10 Jul

Everyone of a certain age remembers where they were when England won the World Cup in 1966. Denis Law, arguably Scotland’s greatest striker, was playing golf, as retrofootballblog.com explains.

Let’s just clear something up. Most – not all – Scotland fans would prefer not to see England win the World Cup. It’s not an anti-English thing. No, it’s just a football rivalry.

So spare a thought for Scottish people living south of the border when England beat West Germany to win it 52 years ago because it will have been a pretty hard event to ignore.

At least it was for Manchester United‘s Denis Law.

Denis Law scored 30 goals in 55 Scotland games

Law is a fiercely proud Scot and one of the country’s greatest strikers, who scored 30 goals in 55 games and in 1964 became the first and only Scottish player to win the Ballon d’Or.

Denis Law has one of those

So what did he do when the Auld Enemy were playing in 1966?

“I was playing golf in Manchester,” he explained to 1995 BBC documentary Kicking and Screaming, recalling a day he had long since buried among happier memories.

“And unlike Manchester it was raining,” he continued in his deadpan style. “And the guy I was playing with was awful. And he beat me.”

Law scored 237 times in 404 games for Man United

Members of the club he was playing at, though, knew this great Scotland forward was out on the course while they watched the greatest moment in their football supporting lives.

And they were keen to let Law know which team were world champions, holding up four fingers from the clubhouse to indicate the number of goals England had scored as he approached, still smarting from defeat to an inferior golfer.

“As I turned the corner at the course, they were all at the window and of course, England had won 4-2.

England, captained by Bobby Moore, won the World Cup in 1966

“I thought it was the end of the world,” he smiled through gritted teeth.

So go easy on your Scottish friends if English dreams become reality, okay?

The World Cup semi-final between Croatia and England is live on talkSPORT at 19:00 on Wednesday 11 July.