As I watched England win the World Cup at Wembley in June 1966, little did I know then that in eight months time I would be back to watch an even more memorable match. Namely, Rangers winning the first ever League Cup Final at Wembley.
Through the previous rounds, it had become obvious that this QPR team had an irresistible blend of skill and experience. The win over Leicester City after coming back from 1-2 down to win 4-2 was confirmation. The semi-final victories over Birmingham City raised expectations sky high so it was almost an anti-climax when at Wembley we found ourselves two down. Both goals scored by an exceptional ex-Ranger, Clive Clark. However, Alec Stock reigned supreme and the R’s won in style. Clark had made his debut for Rangers in 1958 and later returned for a second spell at Loftus Road.
Precise memories tend to fade but I was reminded of some ‘Burt Lancaster’ type antics that happened after the game. A Rangers fan was swinging on the chandeliers in the ‘Princess Victoria’ pub in the Bush ! Another memory was of the Wolsey that had been professionally re-sprayed in blue and white. This was seen around West London for some weeks before the Final and may have been something to do with the boxer, Terry Downes ?
Haircuts and tattoos were prominent among the ever growing queues for match tickets as the Rounds proceeded. Stretching down South Africa Road and into Bloemfontein Road and beyond, this all contributed to the build up to what would be called in those days as, Cup Fever.