Tuesday, May 6, 2014
Fans of a certain age will have fond memories of former Norwich City striker Viv Busby, who scored 11 times for the club in 22 games during his one and a bit seasons at Carrow Road in the 1970s.
And City fan Gerry Welsh, 71, has more reason than most to remember the forward.
Mr Welsh, from Cringleford, sponsored the match ball at a game in the 1976/77 season when City beat Leicester 3-2 and Viv Busby scored a hat-trick.
Mr Welsh and wife Susan were on holiday in Mojacar, Almeria, southern Spain when they met the youthful-looking Mr Busby.
He said: “My wife and I were talking about Norwich in a bar and the barmaid said she knew a former Norwich player who drank there.
Viv Busby was born in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire on June 19, 1949.
He played for Luton Town, Newcastle United, Fulham, Norwich City and Stoke City.
After being transferred from Fulham, he made his debut for Norwich City, then in Division One, in the 1976-1977 season, on September 18, 1976 in a 0-0 draw at home to Derby County, aged 27.
In his first season he played 17 times, and scored 11 goals. In the 1977-1978 season he played five times but did not score. He was transferred to Stoke City in November 1977.
“I said that I would like to meet him and she called Viv up and he came down within five minutes, and we had a few drinks.
“I recognised him straightaway, as he looked exactly as he did when he played for Norwich City, although, back then, he had a moustache or a beard, and he’s now clean-shaven.
“We spent the afternoon talking to him and his wife Barbara, who is from Norwich.”
The couples got on so well together that they have agreed to meet up again the next time Mr Welsh is in Spain.
Former City forward Viv Busby, now 64, played 22 times scoring 11 goals for Norwich City in the 1976/77 and 1977/8 seasons.
Mr Welsh, who has been going to watch the Canaries at Carrow Road since he was eight-years-old, said: “It was an incredible coincidence in that I had sponsored the ball during the game when he scored a hat-trick, and he was good company.
“In the 1970s a firm could sponsor the match ball for £50, get your name in the match day programme, and then get invited to the directors’ box. I got the ball signed by the players and it was auctioned for charity. But I cannot remember which charity or how much the ball went for.
“I cannot remember if I met Viv on that occasion. I remember him being a good player. He could score goals, which the current side can’t.
“He told me why he left Norwich after just over one season with the club, but he did not want me to tell anyone else. He went to Stoke City afterwards.”
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