Now there’s something even John Motson didn’t know

He has had a privileged vantage point on some of the biggest moments in sporting history – but now John Motson was surveying the scene from the world's oldest football stand during a visit to Great Yarmouth.

It may have been lacking the atmosphere of a packed Wembley Stadium, but the veteran commentator was suitably impressed by the ornate Victorian splendour of the Wellesley Road stand.

The man affectionately known by fans the world over as 'Motty' was making his first visit to the town with former player Ricky George, whose winning goal in Hereford's 1972 giant-killing of Newcastle helped launch the young commentator's TV career.

But despite being famous as a walking encyclopedia of football statistics, Motson was forced to admit he was not aware of the stand's place in the history books.

The stand, which dates from 1892, has recently re-opened to spectators following the completion of a �200,000 restoration programme.


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'Ricky acquainted me with the fact that Yarmouth had the oldest football stand in the world on the way here,' said Motty. 'I didn't know that previously, you learn something ever day.

'I've never been to Yarmouth in my life and am very pleased to have made it at last. The nearest I have been to this part of the world would be Norwich. I covered many Canaries' matches down the years for Match of the Day.'

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Motson visited the town last week to talk about his 40 years behind the microphone in an event organised by Yarmouth Football Club.

Sharing memories of some of the games' great characters and matches, he recalled Norwich City's famous Uefa Cup run in 1993 – and tipped the current Canaries side to challenge for promotion.

'The main memory I have got is the club's European run when Norwich won 2-1 against Bayern Munich in the Olympic Stadium,' he said. 'I covered the second leg and two or three of the European matches before they went out to Inter Milan.'

He added: 'The Championship is very interesting and very tight. I think QPR and Cardiff have got the edge on the others, of course they can always hit a bad patch, but that to me looks like one and two. At the moment a cluster of clubs, Norwich is certainly among them and maybe their great rivals Ipswich, will be battling for the play-offs.'

Motson, who has commentated on 10 World Cup finals, was part of the BBC broadcasting team at the 2010 tournament in South Africa.

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