Remembering The Birth Of The English Premier League


I am quickly approaching my 30th birthday. As I’m getting older I am getting a bit more nostalgic.

Lets face it I was born in 1984, the English Premier League in its current guise was founded in 1992. That means I am eight years older than the EPL!

My early memories of the competition include the sublime, the bizarre and the downright ordinary.

One image that has stayed with me from that first season was the mini Premier League trophies that the Manchester United players were given as medals. I remember thinking ‘what a cool prize that is’. I would have chopped off my left arm for one of those trophies.

Its hard to think of just one goal from the early years but my mind just keeps coming back to Tony Yeboah’s volley for Leeds Utd against Liverpool in the 95/96 season. From about 35 -4o yards the ball looped over to the Ghanian after a teammate won the ball in the air. Tony kept his eye on ball throughout and even adjusted his body so he could get in an optimum strike. What a strike it was. A volley that as soon as it left his foot was destined to go in. It flashed straight into the top righthand corner, hitting the bar, flying off the ground and smashing the roof of the net. Fantastic!

The goal celebration that springs to mind was Lee Sharpe’s ‘three amigos’. He’d score and run to the fans. As he reached the touchline he would touch his left shoulder with his right hand, then cross over and do the same with opposite hand and shoulder. Both hands would then drop to his hips, he would thrust forward and wipe off a fake moustache from his face. It may not sound much now but everyone at my school was doing that celebration after they scored.

Coventry City shirt

The strip above is one that Coventry City wore back in the first few seasons on the EPL. It isn’t my favourite but it is unforgettable. The look like silk pyjamas brought down from the clouds. Obviously players such as Micky Quinn, Peter Ndlovu and Brian Burrows wore it with great aplomb.

I was a bit of an Everton fan growing up. Mainly because I liked the ‘Toffees’ badge. Anyway for a spell, when they weren’t really that good, they only seemed to score from set pieces. Andy Hinchcliffe would swing a ball in with his left foot, usually on top of the keeper and players like Dave Watson, Gary Ablett, Paul Rideout, Duncan Ferguson or David Unsworth would bully defences and score from a header. No joke it seemed like they scored from every corner.

I fear I am going mad. Not a week goes by when I don’t think of odd, obscure names of players from EPL’s past. Who all remembers Glenn Helder and his funky hair? The name Marco Boogers? Ronnie Rosenthal’s glorious miss? Names like Lars Bohinen, Sasa Curcic, Florin Raducioiu, Paul Walhurst, Earl Barrett, Barry Venison and Stefano Eranio haunt me in my sleep.

Now all this trivial knowledge is usually useless. But then pub quizzes or online game sites like Sporcle come along and it feels like it is all worth it.

Speaking of which, are you a big fan of the English Premier League? Do you support one of the current EPL sides? Well try this…

How well do you know your team? Quiz From Ladbrokes

It’s a fun quiz but also quite tough. It gets your brain going. The near misses hurt and the correct answers are very satisfying. Help your team out and push them up the table!

Lets you the next 22 years are just as fun and memorable.

3 Responses to “Remembering The Birth Of The English Premier League”

  1. This i great! I have the exact same irrational, frequent thought back to players gone by! (not helped by my obsession with Football Manager as a teen). Marian Pahars, Ruel Fox and Thomas Brolin come to mind!

  2. Haha some great names there!

  3. Hi Scott,

    I love this post. I’m 29 in a few months so I remember all these players, too.

    I recently took it upon myself to draw every player in the Merlin 94 sticker book, and have recently uploaded a few of the Coventry players you mention, along with some of the Everton players of that era.

    You can see my efforts here:



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