For fans of a certain age (me) the one refereeing decision that still rankles is Clive Thomas 1977. I have heard rumour and counter rumour down the years as to whether he ever admitted he got it wrong.
On Thursday night I was listening to Tony Livesey on Radio 5. There was a very lively debate regarding goal line technology. One of the guests was Clive , albeit on the telephone.
Now is my chance, I thought. It was a long shot, but I sent this text to the show;
Please ask Clive Thomas why did he disallow Bryan Hamilton's 1977 FACup Semi final goal for Everton against Liverpool.I didnt think for one minute it would be read out. Then to my amazement as the interview ended and the news was coming on, Tony read it out.
It's never too late, Clive, to admit you got it wrong.
Thomas replied," They won't leave it alone will they. Offside or handball it was". He then muttered something else about "Hamilton knows that", and that was it. All over in ten seconds. Tony Livesey knew where I was coming from. He even said theres nothing like a 35 year grudge.
My only consolation was the whole thing got him slightly irate. Albeit for a few seconds.
For those who haven't forgotten Maine Road '77 we still have no explanation as such. Let alone an apology.
The wait for justice goes on.
But it's nice to know Clive was put on the spot and WE will never leave it alone.!
If you want to hear it, its on BBC iplayer. Radio 5. Thursday 5th. Half an hour in. Tony Livesey show.
Neil Smith, Posted 06/07/2012 at 17:47:21
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463 Posted 06/07/2012 at 19:28:08
Anyway ,the great man Bob Latchford tells a tale that after the match Thomas is reputed to have said to his linesmen, "let's get the story straight lads", to which one of the linesmen said, "No, you get your story straight "
The liner told Bob this.
464 Posted 06/07/2012 at 19:27:12
If he admited he had made a mistake, came out and said he was wrong, I think we`d have long since for given him.
Its every Evertonians duty to remind him of his glaring fuck up ( more to the point, his refusal to admit it) at every opportunity.
Call me bitter, because thats what I am
473 Posted 06/07/2012 at 19:47:25
Blew for half time exactly as Brazil scored in a world cup game once, an arrogant attention seeking prick.
Walked past him once at Porthcawl, all I could do not to rip into him.
Well done for rattling him mate.
474 Posted 06/07/2012 at 19:52:04
477 Posted 06/07/2012 at 19:57:10
My Dad told me 'Clive Thomas is a twat' when I was a kid.
So it must be true.
482 Posted 06/07/2012 at 20:04:11
483 Posted 06/07/2012 at 20:13:19
486 Posted 06/07/2012 at 20:23:39
491 Posted 06/07/2012 at 20:38:23
Back in April, Clive spoke out about refereeing standards in this article:
I sent it to a friend of mine who was a Premier League referee, but retired over a decade ago (and we never had any problems or favour with him).
He shared a story that at his first Football League Referee's Conference, Clive gave a speech, during which he mentioned he never looked at Referee's Assessors reports, in fact he tore them up and consigned them to the bin as soon as they arrived.
I was told that he lost the respect of the entire room with that. With a couple of notable exceptions, I do think that refereeing standards are a whole lot better than the days of "The Book".
The one good thing he did for us was book the entire defensive wall of Ipswich Town for not retreating for a free-kick. Scared to tackle in case of a 2nd yellow, Everton went on to win 6-1 I think. Still a twat of the first order!
492 Posted 06/07/2012 at 20:42:53
Or the bloke, whose name escapes me, who never gave the Hansen hand ball on the line at Wembley in the 1984 League Cup Final!
495 Posted 06/07/2012 at 21:02:57
496 Posted 06/07/2012 at 20:14:59
499 Posted 06/07/2012 at 21:19:46
Poll was interviewed right after the match on camera, as in seconds after, still dripping sweat. The only question (after a 0-0 draw) was "why did you disallow it?". He gave 3 or 4 different reasons and it was after that embarrassment that the FA stepped in and banned referees from being interviewed immediately after games to explain decisions.
To be fair (a little bit) to Poll, he did apologise for it - although I only heard it many years after - "I dropped a rickett" where the words he used. Yes Graham, you rather did.
516 Posted 06/07/2012 at 23:30:15
521 Posted 06/07/2012 at 23:38:11
By the way re: Clive Thomas saying it was "handball or offside" Which was it you cheating excuse for an official?
523 Posted 06/07/2012 at 23:21:03
Thomas has changed his story so many times, I think he's even convinced himself it was the right decision. At first he said it was offside, and he stuck to that until the camera's clearly illustrated that he was wrong - then he said something along the lines of 'Well, if it wasn't offside, it must have been handball'.
The truth is he disallowed it because he 'thought' there couldn't have been a legitimate goal scored from that position - but I'd bet he'd have 'thought' different if the scorer would have been wearing a red shirt.
It was 35 years ago, I was 17 at the time and unable to go the game as I was broke and working for a few quid digging foundation trenches for a mate's dad The three of us, two blues and a red listened to the game on a poxy little radio as we dug- the commentator was baffled 'How was that not given!?' I watched it on the TV that night and had the same thoughts.
It had a profound effect upon me - as since that Clive Thomas howler, I go into every derby match thinking 'I wonder how the ref will fuck up today'... the thing is, try as I might, I cannot ever think of an occasion when a really contentious decision in a derby game has not gone their way.
However, the times they are a'changing, as some poet once said - and if Liverpool continue their decline... and I see no reason why they won't... they'll find that this haunted aspect of a series of uncanny wrong headed decisions by different referees over 35 years, will come to a close.
Will we ever see justice? Now, that's a nice thought...
525 Posted 06/07/2012 at 23:59:22
I empathise with all of the above comments and I was there!
I recently asked Joey Jones for his opinion and he replied that he was the nearest player to Hammy and without doubt it was a legitimate goal.
Credit for his honesty.
539 Posted 07/07/2012 at 01:40:09
Or the bloke, whose name escapes me, who never gave the Hansen hand ball on the line at Wembley in the 1984 League Cup Final!
That twat was actually given the 86 Cup Final between Everton and Liverpool again. I couldn't believe it, and he did it again, refusing Sharpy a penalty in the first half for being kicked in the back as he was about to head into an empty net. He went flying, with the ball whistling over him. Bloody amazing!
How fcek was he even given the game.
541 Posted 07/07/2012 at 03:01:35
543 Posted 07/07/2012 at 03:21:27
I asked him whether it hit his hand by accident or design. Looked me straight in the eye and said NO. I was in the Kippax St for the game. What was galling was that the decision spoiled what would have been a great fighting upset win.Jinky Jim Pearson had a blinder if I remember right and we deserved to win that game. If you look at Ray Clement's reaction after it went in....and he was a guy who appealed for everything...he had a look of total disappointment and resignation. It was a good goal. If anyone reads the Clive Thomas autobiography, lets say he does not lack confidence (thats being kind) so its no wonder he repeatedly refuses to admit he made a mistake. People might remember his first game back at Goodison a year or two later...he was met with a full on Goodison boo-fest. He tried to make light of it with a jokey bow, which only ramped up the abuse. Predictably we lost the replay to a stuffy Souness long ranger. Wheres my therapist. This thread has reopened old wounds.
559 Posted 07/07/2012 at 08:13:25
563 Posted 07/07/2012 at 08:41:15
569 Posted 07/07/2012 at 09:15:08
1. Loon pants
2. Just how dirty a player Terry Yorath was
3. That players were once perfectly capable of carrying on with the game and dodging flying beer cans at the same time.
However, what really stopped me in my tracks was the interview with Clive Thomas, Proof, if ever Evertonians needed it, that for him a game really wasn’t a game unless he was the star. Talking of the 1976 semi between Czechoslovakia and Holland:
"I had the impression as the second half wore on that the Dutch thought they were bigger than the game, and that they were bigger than you. They could do what they liked. That wasn't my game of football.
"Johan Cruyff was one of the worst, but then he always had been. You had to nail him right at the very beginning, because if he knew that he had control of you then you had had it. I saw too many matches where Cruyff had control of referees."
Is Thomas disappointed that the Welsh footballers of his generation never got to experience the 1976 finals in Yugoslavia, as he did?
"It was a shame Wales didn't get there. But I got to the semi-finals because they didn't," he explained.
"Talk about Ryan Giggs, Ian Rush, Mark Hughes, all of them. Not one of them have had what I had. I've been to the World Cup and to the European Cup. None of them have gone to a finals."
The most successful Welsh footballer of all time, and bigger than Cruyff... step forward Clive Thomas.
576 Posted 07/07/2012 at 10:11:59
584 Posted 07/07/2012 at 11:06:18
That decision is my first ever Everton memory. I was 7 and my dad was going mental at the Radio Rentals TV that nearly ended up in the garden.
It was the first lesson in life that life is not fair. In fact, it's quite the opposite most of the time and we have to get on with it, but doesn't make the sense of injustice any easier. Maybe send Thomas, Collina and Clattenburg an open invitation to the Dark House for a debate?
591 Posted 07/07/2012 at 11:16:19
594 Posted 07/07/2012 at 11:00:19
Yes, Marcus. Collina said that he was committing a foul when Dunc scored. In fact, he was being held, ie being fouled. And Collina must have been the only person in the stadium who wasn't looking at Ferguson if he saw anything like that. Not long after, he was suspended for financial irregularities (to do with a sponsorship deal I think). I'm fairly sure that ours was the last game Collina reffed.
Speaking of which, has Clattenberg reffed us since? And he was suspended for matters financial - is a pattern emerging? One interesting follow-on from that can of worms was the conduct of the FA. The threat to bring action against Moyes for his comments was postponed, and then withdrawn. How often does that happen?
I wonder if he, and others, heard a linesman say to the odious Clattenberg -'no Mark, YOU get your story straight'? (Thanks for that story Paul @463)
597 Posted 07/07/2012 at 11:17:14
I was there and in an interview we heard on the car radio coming home, Thomas said an 'infringement occured'. When asked to be more precise about the infringement, he repeated an 'infringement occured'. What a twat.
Anyway, thank you Neil for doing what you done. I thought the twat had died years ago. I won't say what I really feel about Thomas but there will be no sympathy from me when he does go.
614 Posted 07/07/2012 at 13:22:25
The goal line officials have the same attitude-say nothing. They are a waste of space and money. Thank God we won the 1966 cup-final despite a clanger by Butcher Jack Taylor in not giving a penalty when Alex Young was clearly brought down by Springett.
The least said about Clive Thomas the better!!!
616 Posted 07/07/2012 at 13:43:27
621 Posted 07/07/2012 at 14:22:26
We were there that day, and I never want to be as wet again. Why the Kippax didn't collapse when Hamilton scored I will never know. It had felt distinctly wobbly a few times that afternoon already.
634 Posted 07/07/2012 at 16:19:02
Just the first of many jubious decisions which have been given against us in the Derby and never have been justifiably explained, I believe there is a witch hunt by the F.A against us in these games, to never give us the run of the ball, or the correct decisions. To many to just be coincidence.
Maybe with Hawkeye coming into the game we might get one decision correct or will it mysteriously go on the blink and down to the referee`s decision again.
Changing the subject slightly, a number of years ago I was at Highbury on a none matchday, and down stairs in the office part of the stadium there was a throng of people in the corner, I asked one of the office girl`s what was going on? She informed me that Emlyn Hughes was going to give a guided tour to some visitors. I thought too good a chance to miss, so I joined the queue and after a while I eventually got to the front and introduced myself to him as an Evertonian, he immediately said oh no! and he knew what was coming next. Did he regret making that statement from the Town hall balcony, he said that he did and that us Bluenoses NEVER let him forget about it. He apologised and said that he was drunk. I wonder what happened to my I Hate Emlyn Hughes badge? Yes, we were so irrate.
I feel that we have a obligation to let these people know that we have long memories and do not forget easily.... THEY CALL US BITTER — YOU BET!!!!! COYB
638 Posted 07/07/2012 at 17:01:44
639 Posted 07/07/2012 at 17:01:45
641 Posted 07/07/2012 at 16:50:52
645 Posted 07/07/2012 at 17:19:14
If he simply had the grace to stand up and admit he got it wrong – which TV replays comprehensively proved he did – we could move on. Sad, disappointed, but accepting that a man made an honest mistake. Sadly, he will never do that.
Remember that excellent Danny Baker series? Thought it was Match of the 80s, but maybe it was 70s?? Either way, Emlyn Hughes was interviewed in one episode and giggled away that Liverpool had got away with it in that semi-final because Clive Thomas disallowed an Everton winner and then admitted he'd got it wrong.
The following week there was a retraction at the end of the programme. Something along the lines of "Clive Thomas has contacted us and asked us to point out he did not admit to making a mistake!"
Talk about gobsmacked.
That was his opportunity to put the record straight. Like Graham Poll did in his book about the Hutchison disallowed goal (basically he panicked, blew the final whistle and pretended time was up).
You've given him that opportunity again Neil. But he'll never take it.
And if no-one understands why it's so important, Blues of a certain age had been given a childhood from hell with Liverpool winning absolutely everything (including seven years unbeaten in derbies – a lifetime when you're a schoolboy). The year they won the European Cup for the first time there were Reds mates outside the house chanting "Prenny show us your scarf!" It was a tortured time. So this was the big chance to tilt the balance ever so slightly back.
The players took their chance. The fans celebrated wildly. But Thomas cheated us out of it.
That's why we'll never let it lie. And why Thomas should be constantly reminded of his cheating.
Horrible, horrible man. Thoroughly endorse your views, Dave Charles.
650 Posted 07/07/2012 at 17:53:37
Them RS twats ruined my childhood and Thomas helped them do it, the cheating twat. I still have nightmares about it and will take it to the grave with me.
652 Posted 07/07/2012 at 17:34:19
Thomas? For me, I'm glad that he has never apologised. You make a mistake, you apologise. He didn't make a mistake. He made a deliberate choice to swing the tie back to the RS. And the fact that he hasn't apologised over the years shows this to be true.
And, I would argue, its evidence of a nagging problem deep down in his mental state. He's a was-been (no longer a has-been, that is). The medals, the stories to tell of a glorious career - but here's one story he'll never tell. 'And you know, the buggers thought they'd won it, but I sorted them out'.
Once again Neil, congratulations for catching up with him and reminding him of what a contemptible little man he actually is, and always has been.
654 Posted 07/07/2012 at 18:08:18
CLIVE THOMAS YOU TWAT!
658 Posted 07/07/2012 at 18:54:29
659 Posted 07/07/2012 at 18:49:36
That's the comment I remember the fuckwit coming out with
I was in the left hand side of the Kippax that day, dodging coins thrown by our loveable neighbours, and it remains the biggest post-celebration come down I've ever experienced
Also, don't know if Dave Prentice has heard this one but I read that at a sports forum a Blue spoke to one of the linesmen who officated that day and was told that Thomas's first words to the linesmen in the dressing room were "right lads, we've got to get our story straight"
662 Posted 07/07/2012 at 19:20:46
665 Posted 07/07/2012 at 20:13:39
That was a cup game against Villa. Two things I remember vividly. The first being the whistles of derision towards him when he stepped onto the pitch and then his name being announced. I have never, even to this day, heard so much abuse.
The second thing was that we got absolutely every 50/50 decision in our favour. The prick even giving us a soft penalty award for the first goal I seem to remember.
666 Posted 07/07/2012 at 20:22:11
There's a great tale from a Shareholders Assn meeting years later when Thomas was bizarrely invited to Goodison to speak.
He stood up. Silence. Delivered a 20 minute talk. Absolute silence.
Questions were asked from the floor and one hand flew straight up.
It wasn't what Thomas had expected.
"Mr Thomas?" asked the fan. "Why didn't Hitler bomb Treorchy first!"
(Treorchy being Thomas' birth town)
Cue Thunderous applause and the Chairman, Bill Scott, heard to murmur "Good question!"
I was at that Aston Villa game when Thomas took a Blues match for the first time after the semi-final. It was an FA Cup tie and the booing when he walked out was merciless.
He tried to make a joke by putting his hands over his ears and walk back down the tunnel, but the booing intensified.
He sent off Villa's Leighton Phillips, gave us a penalty and we won 4-1.
I later heard him talk about that day and say he punctured the animosity with his "little joke," claiming the crowd laughed. Once again convincing himself something happened which didn't.
Total, total twat.
669 Posted 07/07/2012 at 21:00:00
Just to show how times have changed, 5 of us, workmates, 3 Blue, 2 reds, travelled in the same car, blue and red scarves hanging from the windows
We stopped for a pint in a pub off Princes Way(?) and Mancs were coming in from the other rooms to stare at us - one finally approached us and asked "are you all going to the semi?"
The locals couldn't believe it
Wouldn't dream of it, now
685 Posted 07/07/2012 at 23:22:39
A quite deflating moment when we later became aware that Queen Kenny had actually volleyed them ahead.
I hate twats!
687 Posted 07/07/2012 at 23:30:37
On the other hand I believe Collina – who unexpectedly retired immediately afterwards – took a brown envelope from Villarreal's tile manufacturing magnate owner to ensure we lost. Or perhaps Uefa simply had to make sure only four English teams would play in the Champions League after all, with the totally undeserved inclusion of the RS.
727 Posted 08/07/2012 at 08:37:47
I recently came across him (Thomas) on YouTube with Skinner and Badeil, what an arsehole. Mick Lyons and others have it right... There's no show without punch.
739 Posted 08/07/2012 at 09:56:58
765 Posted 08/07/2012 at 14:02:14
I was a teenager at college in Manchester at the time and was so incensed with his unforgivably-unsporting arrogance that I had 1,000 made. I sold nearly all of them in a single game and ended up having another 1,000 made, which went equally as quickly.
Later, an article appeared in the Football Echo, depicting them as 'The small minded badge of shame' and asking who the 'parasites' who produced them were and calling for them to be identified!
Little did they know it was an 18 year old student with a paper round!
I still have a dozen left, which I kept as souvenirs. Must be a collector's item by now?
And I still have no regrets about producing them. He was the ultimate Gobshite and deserves no respect because he has now passed away.
Clive Thomas should be buried next to him. Alive preferably.
767 Posted 08/07/2012 at 14:28:25
773 Posted 08/07/2012 at 15:53:27
I kept a photocopy of the article for years and passed it on to the fanzine When Skies Are Grey for them to print. Colin Seel has since passed away; like most bitter blues, I wish it was Clive Thomas instead.
777 Posted 08/07/2012 at 16:18:49
783 Posted 08/07/2012 at 17:31:53
784 Posted 08/07/2012 at 17:39:33
796 Posted 08/07/2012 at 21:52:46
812 Posted 08/07/2012 at 23:34:54
831 Posted 09/07/2012 at 09:10:35
He failed to send off Jimmy Case for an assault on our goalkeeper - but to his credit he also failed to send off Mike Lyons for dancing all over Case's legs. If you watch the clip - note the Liverpool player Souness refereeing the game with Thomas after the Case incident, insisting he sends Lyons off... some things never change.
838 Posted 09/07/2012 at 09:48:15
864 Posted 09/07/2012 at 12:59:14
I have no doubt that Bryan Hamilton scored a goal - yes hardly a classic goal - but nonetheless a goal. Had Mr Thomas had the decency to admit that he had made a mistake then I would have forgiven him. However he has show no signs at all of doing that . And he has the nerve to say that " they wont let it go" Well admit that you made a mistake. The fact that Clive Thomas said " it was either handball or offside" shows that he can't even be sure !!!!!
How fitting it was that in the 1978 World Cup he showed the wider footballing world his ineptitude. I went to my 1st Everton match in 1964 and in 48 years of watching football Clive Thomas is one of the most arrogant referees I have seen. What he has to be arrogant about is beyond me as he is also one of the most incompetent referees in any sport that I have seen.
025 Posted 10/07/2012 at 12:20:58
I said, "I bet you had fucking nightmares about that game ever since, because you were shitting yourself in case someone found out you took a bung."
His face went bright red, he turned and said, "I am not even going to reply to that!"
062 Posted 10/07/2012 at 16:10:58
How could anyone Blue of a certain age ever forget that day? We were massive underdogs but were superb, culminating in a 3-2 win — or at least that's what most of us in the ground thought... until that dirty vile robbing arrogant smug prick came along and took it all away from us — just like that!!!
Not for handball; not for offside — just because he could! You've only got to read the comments on here about him to know what a twat he is. He'll never ever be forgiven by us... never! I hope the bastard is sitting there every night, pissing and shitting himself, and then dies a truly horrible slow death, gasping for every breath.
If I ever see you, I'll kick the walking stick from underneath you, then you'll know how I felt on that Saturday at Maine Road.
114 Posted 10/07/2012 at 20:43:05
Bemusment stays with me still today as with the rest of us.
For me it is not the Eifel Tower which would be appropriate,although the height fakter is tempting,but I believe that there is a bridge in London...............!
Let him be joined by Clatenberg, Collina etc
131 Posted 10/07/2012 at 23:05:55
"...despite universal criticism of his display on Saturday, Clive Thomas was again the referee and once again he played a crucial role in the outcome. Thirty tense and hard-fought minutes had passed when Ray Kennedy lobbed a harmless ball into the Everton box, Mike Pejic climbed above David Johnson to head clear but, to everyone’s amazement, Mr Thomas pointed to the penalty spot. While it was clear that Pejic, in rising above Johnson, placed his arms on the striker’s shoulders, it’s a moot point whether Johnson attempted to jump or whether he deliberately backed into Pejic. Certainly, he never appealed and it was the sort of incident that occurs several times in every game, normally being ignored completely or punished by a free-kick either way, usually when it takes place just outside the box. Mr Thomas perhaps saw the incident as the ideal opportunity to show that he would not be influenced by all the criticism he had received since the first game. Inevitably, Phil Neal stroked the penalty home to give Liverpool a vital advantage."
Two late goals as Everton chased an equaliser made the score an emphatic 3-0 but they wouldn't have been chasing the game but for Thomas's decision.
137 Posted 10/07/2012 at 23:17:51
That day is a scar on my memory alongside the Keeley derby match, the 90s relegation battles, Istan-twatting-bul.
Burn in hell, CT, you gobshite.
143 Posted 10/07/2012 at 23:40:05
For me, you have to remember the incident took place 35 years ago.
You also have to remember we all make mistakes.
So given this, all I would say is in my opinion, Thomas is a weasel-faced, scrawny, head-too-big-for-his-body, "it's all about me" self-important, piece of shit, probably a Mason, probably a Tory, fucking useless, hopeless, twatting, shitbag, shithouse, shit-for-brains.........CHEAT!!!!!
And leave it at that.
(otherwise these things can fester)
150 Posted 11/07/2012 at 00:28:10
And refs like Thomas always seem to me to be like the people I have known to be members of 'the craft', as I believe they like to call themselves (purely so that they can do good works of course). Better than thou, arrogant bastards with very high opinions of themselves based on little evidence to support their conclusion.
Betcha he is.
260 Posted 11/07/2012 at 16:20:39
I bet the onion-headed fucker has had his trouser leg rolled up more times than you've had hot curry.
291 Posted 11/07/2012 at 19:13:03
Can any of us recall any incident where a Liverpool fan says "yeah but we lost because x favoured you". I can't.
Says it all.
445 Posted 12/07/2012 at 14:24:26
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