APART from all the sad news of the coronavirus hitting us day by day, Anne and I were very upset to hear that a gentleman called Ian Gordon had died from cancer.

He may be remembered by supporters as being on the board of directors at The Dell when changes were being made.

He worked for a big company of solicitors in Southampton and was a passionate supporter, making him the ideal director.

Lots of love and best wishes to his wife, Carol, and the rest of his family.


LAST week there were some headlines on one of the Echo pages that caught my eye which said there was a plea for more blood donors to help the stock in Hampshire.

At present their levels are good but donations have dropped at a time when, possibly, more and more are going to be needed.

I have an interest in this sort of thing because many, many years ago, when I was much younger, Anne and I had blood tests.

We were then contacted and told we were Rhesus Negative Blood Group 0, which apparently is the only blood that can mix with any other.

They were asking if we would be prepared to be put on a list of people who have this type of blood and who could be asked to help if necessary.

I did that and a long time after doing so I got asked to go to a hospital in Newcastle to give a sample.

To complete the story, a long while after, I was sent a letter from the hospital which they had received from the patient to thank people like myself who he said had saved his life.

Obviously, this wasn’t a regular thing and at my age now I wouldn’t be asked again but seeing this plea to people in Hampshire got me thinking.

I would say to anyone out there who would like to help, it would be about half an hour whilst they take the blood.

You sit with a cup of tea and a snack and that’s all there is to it. There isn’t any pain, only an awful lot to gain.

If anyone would like to make an appointment they can either call 03001232323, sign up via the Give Blood app or by visiting www.blood.co.uk.

Thinking about it, there are up to 30 or 40 very fit, athletic footballers in our area and even more if you add Bournemouth and Portsmouth.

Wouldn’t it be great if they could fill some of the spare time they have at the moment and contribute?

Not only would it be a great gesture to the supporters, but it would also get them out of the house which they can’t really do at the minute.


ONE evening last week I had made a point of watching a programme on ITV which I had seen advertised to be about the first time foreign players came into the English game.

Supporters of a certain age will know why I was interested because Southampton were one of the first clubs to do this with the arrival of two Ivans.

The first one in 1978 was full-back Ivan Golac, followed by goalkeeper Ivan Katilinic two years later.

The programme covered what they thought was everybody that came in from abroad.

But their failure to mention the pair not only surprised and amazed me, but I also found it disgusting.

Tottenham were given a lot of mention because they had brought in Ossie Ardiles and Ricardo Villa.

Bobby Robson, bless him, was also mentioned for bringing in two Dutch players.

But, whilst they all turned out to be hugely popular and successful, they were no more so than our two.

For instance, Golac was the full back when we got to the League Cup final and I can still see the broad smile on his face walking into Wembley alongside Alan Ball.

Alan never dreamt he’d play again at Wembley after winning the World Cup in 1966 and it turned out Golac’s dream was to play there one day.

Katilinic wasn’t as successful at first and I had him in and out of the team because when goalkeepers make mistakes it can often cost games and, unfortunately, it happened to him until he got settled in.

But he was a part of the team in 1983/84 which finished second, the highest position this club has ever finished in, just three points behind Liverpool.

Although he made mistakes, he will be remembered for his fantastic saves, including one at Liverpool, which is a game we ended up winning thanks to a late goal at Anfield.

For those two not to be mentioned in that programme was something I could not believe.

When you look at Ivan Golac’s record, it’s remarkable to think he also played for Bournemouth and Portsmouth during loan spells.

He could possibly be the only player to have played for all three clubs.

Golac eventually moved to Scotland to manage Dundee United and won the Scottish Cup by beating Rangers, after Dundee had lost their previous six finals.

He also managed in Europe and with both of them now being about 70, I think they’ve probably had enough!

They were not both just terrific players on their day, Golac was one of the biggest favourites ever because he loved to attack from full back.

He only scored about four goals, but people will remember when the referee struggled to restart the game after his first strike for the club because of his celebration.

For them not to be mentioned on a national TV programme was disgraceful because they obviously hadn’t done their homework.