Welcome Notice

Hello and welcome to Molineux Mix a forum for Wolves fans by Wolves fans.

Register Log in

Attendances 86-87

Lupus ad Penn

Groupie
Joined
Dec 31, 2016
Messages
134
Reaction score
357
Not just Wolves,but attendances generally were shocking, especially the First division. A combination of many factors including terrible unsafe grounds, hooliganism, dreadful policing,and boring football. We were on our way back up in the 4th division season as Turner started to turn things around. We had increased our average by 1700 after the worst season in my lifetime, the relegation from third to fourth in 85-86.
 

Timberwolf

Just doesn't shut up
Joined
Jul 5, 2005
Messages
9,191
Reaction score
5,952
86-87 was the first year I could afford to travel and watch Wolves. Only went a handful of times as I was only on YTS money, but seem to remember more than a 6000 average gate. Far from me to suggest otherwise but do you think there was some creative accounting going on?
 

stoke wanderer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 4, 2016
Messages
47
Reaction score
30
we starte
86-87 was the first year I could afford to travel and watch Wolves. Only went a handful of times as I was only on YTS money, but seem to remember more than a 6000 average gate. Far from me to suggest otherwise but do you think there was some creative accounting going on?
the first match at home to cambridge united had an exact attendance of 6K always thought that a bit odd
 

WR4Wolf

Groupie
Joined
Jan 22, 2017
Messages
109
Reaction score
205
Started going regularly at the end of the previous season when crowds were we around 3,000. People will knock us but looks at the crowds in Div 1 so it had to be viewed in context. Wolves had just got into a terrible downward slide slipping through the leagues so what appeal was there to go. As soon as we steadied the ship, signed Bully we were back on our way & the fans began to return. Great days
 

Adrian_Monk

Just doesn't shut up
Joined
Apr 17, 2006
Messages
13,373
Reaction score
6,056
We were up to about 15% unemployment back then, over 3 million for the best part of 5-6 years. The midlands were particularly bad - if I remember rightly Wolverhampton and Telford were amongst the highest in the country.

Then there was Black Monday, terrible winters, football was fresh from Heysel, you had loads of social discontent going on like the prison riots and speedway was in a bit of a swansong back then. That's even before you factor in we had two open stands, Sammy Chapman and his sons and the elusive Bhattis. By the time 87 came around things were looking up a bit, that was the year I first went (we lost in my first game, predictably)
 

Mel Eves on a bike

Senior Member
Joined
May 20, 2013
Messages
457
Reaction score
472
My first home game that season against Cambridge after my dad finally agreed to drive me up from Hertfordshire. Brian Little as manager and some kids in the team as young as me at the time I think being 16 (one of which I met on the same degree course a few years later which was funny).

Vince Bartram having a shocker at the end if my memory serves me right. Bit of an air of depression around but I was just pleased to be there and good times were just around the corner!
 

cannockwolves

Just doesn't shut up
Joined
Jun 30, 2005
Messages
3,362
Reaction score
2,586
Started going regularly at the end of the previous season when crowds were we around 3,000. People will knock us but looks at the crowds in Div 1 so it had to be viewed in context. Wolves had just got into a terrible downward slide slipping through the leagues so what appeal was there to go. As soon as we steadied the ship, signed Bully we were back on our way & the fans began to return. Great days

There were also loads of fans who were boycotting the home games because of the ownership, but they used to go away.

I used to go home and away around this time and we might have 3k at home, but we would have a good couple of thousand go away.

I know the S****horpe game was 1987, but that was just crazy away following. I recon there was well over 5k in the two that day, loads didn't get in the ground.

But there were loads of games we're we took over the towns, Exeter, Torquay, Blackpool and Chester stick in my mind as crazy away days in this time period.
 

Very Proud (AKA Still Proud)

Prouder than a proud thing in Proudville
Joined
Jul 5, 2005
Messages
12,007
Reaction score
14,364
1985-86 I’d be in the bar in The Prestwood Arms of a Saturday lunchtime. About 1:30 I’d start to try and rally the troops. Maybe would get one or two takers then about 2:00pm we’d jump on the bus up town.

The rest of them would head over to Wolverhampton United mainly because the bar was open all afternoon.

NB for the youngsters the pubs would shut between 2:30 and 6:00pm
 

Sussex Wolf

Just doesn't shut up
Joined
Jan 31, 2012
Messages
17,291
Reaction score
18,601
I think the biggest observation is the crowds of the top Division 1 clubs. Everton, top, with 32k crowds similar to ours now. Everton the club spending several hundred million to build a new ground now to increase their capacity to 55k. Liverpool at 35k. Spurs and Arsenal at 25k and 29k respectively. And people use historical averages from periods like this to determine that we couldn’t fill a 40k stadium now?

You could pick half a handful of PL clubs who historically (prior to our demise in the early 80’s) had comparable crowds to us when in the top league, and look at their crowds back in the mid 80’s and compare them to their crowds now, and that will provide a more realistic estimate of what attendances Wolves would average if not constrained by Molineux’s current capacity.

All academic of course since we are not doing anything to expand Molineux any time soon!
 

Dr Wolfenstein

Just doesn't shut up
Joined
Apr 24, 2006
Messages
7,530
Reaction score
1,836
Of course, we only had a two-sided ground at the time. (Northampton's was three-sided, with duck boards dividing it from the County cricket ground.) Probably a number of clubs had similar issues with old stands following the Bradford fire.
 

greco wolf

Just doesn't shut up
Joined
Mar 12, 2008
Messages
5,014
Reaction score
2,136
Violence in the 80s drove many away. I went to my first game mid 70s as a small boy but started going again regularly around 87-88. We certainly had bigger crowds then, south bank packed every game. Had the pleasure of seeing all Bully’s goals st molineux and quite a few away. Great times even though we were bottom tier

Those days are gone. Football has changed. Just so glad I experienced it. Places like bradford , Watford , Luton, Huddersfield’s , Mansfield etc away. Heady days
 

topcat99

Just doesn't shut up
Joined
Jul 27, 2011
Messages
5,792
Reaction score
9,066
I was at RAF Binbrook, so took in games in the Yorkshire / Lincoln region mainly as it was a sod to get to.

In 88 posted to RAF Valley, so, although remote, I had every weekend off and it was a pleasant drive. So more games.

If I couldn’t attend, Teletext came to the rescue.

My older lads first game was 1990 on opening day v Oldham in Division 2 (Steve Bull 2 Ian Marshall 3)
 

jwolfie91

Just doesn't shut up
Joined
Aug 8, 2018
Messages
12,518
Reaction score
16,074
This is all very strange, I've been told modern football is awful and we need the glory days of the 80s back
 

Sussex Wolf

Just doesn't shut up
Joined
Jan 31, 2012
Messages
17,291
Reaction score
18,601
This is all very strange, I've been told modern football is awful and we need the glory days of the 80s back

I remember the 80’s. Glory days for English football, they were certainly not! Too young to remember much before then.
 

Mugwump

Just doesn't shut up
Joined
Feb 21, 2015
Messages
12,625
Reaction score
11,163
86/87 was great. It was the start of our comeback and restoring our pride.
 

Saltyjim

Just doesn't shut up
Joined
Apr 10, 2010
Messages
2,702
Reaction score
1,351
86/87 was better than 85/86. Once we hit our stride in the spring of 87 the feel good factor was back quite quickly. Only paused by the play-off loss against Aldershot, and then followed by 2 back-to-back title seasons.
 

Oldgoldilox

Groupie
Joined
Sep 9, 2019
Messages
137
Reaction score
241
My Dad took me to a few games around 80/81/82 but only went to a handful during the nosedive years. I started going again when I started working in 86, didnt go to the Cambridge game (incidentally my Wolves encyclopaedia has that attendance as 6016). I remember a game against Tranmere, going about half hour before KO and the ground being completely empty. Could chose your own seat in the John Ireland provided it wasn't reserved for a STH. I was kind of going out of morbid curiosity at that point but to be fair, things had stabilised after the council/Gallagher's rescue plan.
 

Very Proud (AKA Still Proud)

Prouder than a proud thing in Proudville
Joined
Jul 5, 2005
Messages
12,007
Reaction score
14,364
86/87 was better than 85/86. Once we hit our stride in the spring of 87 the feel good factor was back quite quickly. Only paused by the play-off loss against Aldershot, and then followed by 2 back-to-back title seasons.
At the time I was gutted but that Aldershot defeat meant that we bounced back much better. Over the next two seasons we became history makers, I think if we’d have gone up in 87 we wouldn’t have done as well.
 

Longford Wolf

Groupie
Joined
Nov 5, 2021
Messages
93
Reaction score
244
There were also loads of fans who were boycotting the home games because of the ownership, but they used to go away.

I used to go home and away around this time and we might have 3k at home, but we would have a good couple of thousand go away.

I know the S****horpe game was 1987, but that was just crazy away following. I recon there was well over 5k in the two that day, loads didn't get in the ground.

But there were loads of games we're we took over the towns, Exeter, Torquay, Blackpool and Chester stick in my mind as crazy away days in this time period.
Did you go away with Cannock Wolves ? If you did I will probably know you. A few of us from Cannock were also going home and away at this time
 

oldgoldheart

Just doesn't shut up
Joined
Jul 6, 2016
Messages
6,103
Reaction score
6,470
I think the biggest observation is the crowds of the top Division 1 clubs. Everton, top, with 32k crowds similar to ours now. Everton the club spending several hundred million to build a new ground now to increase their capacity to 55k. Liverpool at 35k. Spurs and Arsenal at 25k and 29k respectively. And people use historical averages from periods like this to determine that we couldn’t fill a 40k stadium now?

You could pick half a handful of PL clubs who historically (prior to our demise in the early 80’s) had comparable crowds to us when in the top league, and look at their crowds back in the mid 80’s and compare them to their crowds now, and that will provide a more realistic estimate of what attendances Wolves would average if not constrained by Molineux’s current capacity.

All academic of course since we are not doing anything to expand Molineux any time soon!
So true. Look at “mighty newcastle”. Their crowds dropped to 15,000 in div2. We can fill 40k
 

Frank Lincoln

Just doesn't shut up
Joined
Aug 8, 2012
Messages
16,476
Reaction score
18,462
There were also loads of fans who were boycotting the home games because of the ownership, but they used to go away.

I used to go home and away around this time and we might have 3k at home, but we would have a good couple of thousand go away.

I know the S****horpe game was 1987, but that was just crazy away following. I recon there was well over 5k in the two that day, loads didn't get in the ground.

But there were loads of games we're we took over the towns, Exeter, Torquay, Blackpool and Chester stick in my mind as crazy away days in this time period.
Very true. I knew a couple of people who said they would never step inside Molineux again whiles the Bhatti Brothers (excuse my language) owned Wolves. Yet they both went to just about every away game.

I remember going to Exeter City on a bank holiday Monday. Three parts of the ground was full of Wolves fans.
 

beppe7619

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 9, 2016
Messages
372
Reaction score
244
Teams like Newcastle attendance never changed much with crowds of 20000 + in the 90s now they have 50000 we lost loads of supporter being out of the top division
 

GV Wolf

Groupie
Joined
Dec 2, 2016
Messages
245
Reaction score
377
86/87 was better than 85/86. Once we hit our stride in the spring of 87 the feel good factor was back quite quickly. Only paused by the play-off loss against Aldershot, and then followed by 2 back-to-back title seasons.
South Bank was packed that day in the play off against Aldershot.
 

Bawtry Wolf

Just doesn't shut up
Joined
Jul 13, 2006
Messages
2,170
Reaction score
3,593
I think the biggest observation is the crowds of the top Division 1 clubs. Everton, top, with 32k crowds similar to ours now. Everton the club spending several hundred million to build a new ground now to increase their capacity to 55k. Liverpool at 35k. Spurs and Arsenal at 25k and 29k respectively. And people use historical averages from periods like this to determine that we couldn’t fill a 40k stadium now?

You could pick half a handful of PL clubs who historically (prior to our demise in the early 80’s) had comparable crowds to us when in the top league, and look at their crowds back in the mid 80’s and compare them to their crowds now, and that will provide a more realistic estimate of what attendances Wolves would average if not constrained by Molineux’s current capacity.

All academic of course since we are not doing anything to expand Molineux any time soon!
Everton won the league that season. Our average is actually boosted by more fans turning up towards the end of the season as we went on an amazing run to the play offs. Even included a pitch invasion on the last game of the season when Bully and Andy Thompson started up front together vs Hartlepool. Bully’s first hat-trick.
 

Bradmore Wolf

Has a lot to say
Joined
Aug 8, 2016
Messages
1,272
Reaction score
1,697
Games that stick in the memory- Southend on a Friday night and then a strip pub on the Sat lunchtime, being chased through the park by the Aldershot ground, Scarboro away, Burnley final and drinking in Kipps' wine bar before a home game and deciding whether to go or not before Marie kicked you out
 

jackdusty

Just doesn't shut up
Joined
Mar 16, 2008
Messages
2,288
Reaction score
588
Did you go away with Cannock Wolves ? If you did I will probably know you. A few of us from Cannock were also going home and away at this time
I did along with the usual rabble from Rugeley
 

Bawtry Wolf

Just doesn't shut up
Joined
Jul 13, 2006
Messages
2,170
Reaction score
3,593
Games that stick in the memory- Southend on a Friday night and then a strip pub on the Sat lunchtime, being chased through the park by the Aldershot ground, Scarboro away, Burnley final and drinking in Kipps' wine bar before a home game and deciding whether to go or not before Marie kicked you out
Remember the chase at Aldershot. I got tickets from Aldershot as I was living in Guildford at the time. All the people in front of me were squaddies and members of the paras (according to uniform). Anyway we had one end and half of the main stand in the ground (well a park really). I nearly got arrested for being a vociferous Wolves fan In the Home part of the stand and had to jump over the waist high wall between fans as Surrey’s finest were coming up the steps. Dreadful weather and David Barnes runs rings round us. After the game our fans decide to have a go at 2 para so got a bit lively in the park and on way back to the station.

The previous game at Colchester was good, got into the home end as we were all sold out the was escorted round the ground at my request to our end which was rammed and was making a hell of a noise with a very low corrugated iron roof. Great days.

Another good game was Halifax on a Tuesday or Wednesday night in 87/88. Travelled most of the day from Surrey, went to ground as new it was all ticket (post Scarborough). When I asked for a ticket was asked which end, so stood at the bus garage end and watch us lose 2:1 after taking the lead. Miss last train, Kip at station and catch milk train home. Standard away game then.
 
Top Bottom