West Ham United v Liverpool, 1978: Classic Video

It’s hard to believe that a classic West Ham United team featuring legends such as Trevor Brooking, Alan Curbishley, Frank Lampard Sr., Billy Bonds and a young Alvin Martin were staring down the face of relegation on the last day of the 1977-1978 season. But they were, and they needed a win to try to stay up.

In the above video, West Ham United faced Liverpool in front of The Big Match TV cameras. Complete with the infamous opening tune and the memorable image of a dog peeing on a ball, the opening credits of The Big Match lead into a brief segment hosted by legendary commentator Brian Moore.

On to the game, West Ham faced one of the greatest Liverpool teams ever featuring legendary Reds players such as Ray Clemence, Kenny Dalglish, Terry McDermott, Phil Thompson, Phil Neal, Jimmy Case, David Fairclough, Emlyn Hughes, Ray Kennedy, Alan Hansen and Graeme Souness.

Pay special attention to the video and notice why so many people compare Fernando Torres to the great Kenny Dalglish, number seven for Liverpool.

And how about that Upton Park pitch? It looks like a beach.

The final score from this game ended West Ham United 0-2 Liverpool, which relegated the Hammers.

About Christopher Harris

Founder and publisher of World Soccer Talk, Christopher Harris is the managing editor of the site. He has been interviewed by The New York Times, The Guardian and several other publications. Plus he has made appearances on NPR, BBC World, CBC, BBC Five Live, talkSPORT and beIN SPORT. Harris, who has lived in Florida since 1984, has supported Swansea City since 1979. He's also an expert on soccer in South Florida, and got engaged during half-time of a MLS game. Harris launched EPL Talk in 2005, which was rebranded as World Soccer Talk in 2013. View all posts by Christopher Harris →
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6 Responses to West Ham United v Liverpool, 1978: Classic Video

  1. John says:

    Question, why is there only one player listed as a substitute in the opening line-ups? Were you only allowed one sub back then?

    • The Gaffer says:

      John, yep, one sub. Can you believe it?! Seems odd nowadays, but it could have been worse — before 1965, there were no substitutions allowed in English football. If players were injured, the team played with whoever was able to carry on.

      Other readers, what else stands out as interesting to you in this above video? It’s definitely one I highly recommend watching.

      Cheers,
      The Gaffer

  2. ovalball says:

    As always, when I watch one of these, I am absolutely amazed at the ability of the players to keep their feet through all kinds of traffic. I know, I know, today’s players are so much faster, blah, blah, blah. Still.

    Don’t want to start another diving debate, but you know what I’m saying. Perhaps today’s players are simply equilibrium challenged. Maybe we need a government study. :-D

  3. John says:

    Gaffer thanks for the answer to my question. I am always intrigued by how tough the old school players seem. I didn’t start watching soccer until a few years ago and the players today seem more flashy and “delicate” than the old players. Unlike the NFL in America, this was a sport that was not designed solely for television to look like a video game. No graphics and barely even an update on the score during the game.

  4. Al says:

    I love these old videos also. I think that John’s comment about the NFL is off base however. You have obviously not seen old footage of NFL games. It looked nothing like a video game. The NFL was founded in 1920. I don’t think it was “designed” with video games in mind. While were on the subject, what do you think an EPL broadcast looks like today? It is no different.

  5. Kings says:

    im not born yet :D

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