Timothy Victor Ward; gentleman, manager and Kingmaker by David Moore

Timothy Victor Ward; gentleman, manager and Kingmaker by David Moore

Tim, a true gentleman, was probably too nice a person to bring the success that Rams fans craved, not helped by the board of directors at the time, seemingly content to see their cash-strapped club coast along in the old Second Division. His five year tenure might have been a frustrating one for him but he left behind a huge legacy. As well as bringing the splendid Alan Durban to the Baseball Ground, Tim was responsible for signing Kevin Hector,…

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Hard to find Derby County away friendly programmes

Hard to find Derby County away friendly programmes

In December 1950 the FA withdrew its ban on floodlit football which allowed English clubs to install floodlights. However, competitive games under floodlights were still banned by the FA and clubs that had installed these had to organise friendly matches to use them. One such match was Derby’s friendly at Aldershot on Monday 18 October 1954. Derby were a team in decline and on their way towards relegation to Division 3 North only two seasons after being relegated from the…

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Harry Storer by David Moore

Harry Storer by David Moore

Harry Storer managed Derby County for seven seasons starting in the summer of 1955 through to the end of the 1961-62 campaign. His achievements, considering the chaos at the Baseball Ground when he arrived, were quite extraordinary. Storer, a tough tackling wing-half for the Rams back in the 1920s and talented enough to win a couple of England caps (and a fine cricketer for Derbyshire too), had already enjoyed considerable success as a manager at Coventry and Birmingham. He arrived…

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Kevin Hector’s home debut

Kevin Hector’s home debut

Hero Hector! Sparkling display has fans whooping. Durban grabs the goals, but £40,000 new boy is man of the match. They cheered him off the pitch, then they waited half-an-hour and cheered him out of the ground, jostling to pat him on the back. And no wonder, for nobody could have asked more of a player on his debut than £40,000 Kevin Hector provided at the Baseball Ground on Saturday’. Headline from the Derby Evening Telegraph, 26 September 1966.  …

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The Rams in the Texaco Cup 1971/1972

The Rams in the Texaco Cup 1971/1972

The Texaco Cup was a tournament played in the 1970s between clubs from England, Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland and Scotland that had not qualified for European competition. It was one of the first examples of corporate sponsorship in football, backed by the American petroleum company who were keen for additional exposure after acquiring the Regent filling station chain. Matches were played during the same weeks as the European competitions, rounds consisted of two-legs and penalty shoot-outs settled drawn ties. Wolverhampton Wanderers won the first Texaco Cup…

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The Arthur Cox era – time for a re-appraisal

The Arthur Cox era – time for a re-appraisal

David Moore recalls the remarkable impact made by the manager who, he believes, has never quite had the recognition he deserved for his achievement in emulating Harry Storer by quickly stabilising the club and then lifting it out of the third tier of English football the following season. The mid-1980s saw a remarkable transformation in Third Division Derby’s fortunes under the shrewd managership of Arthur Cox. At the time I was living in a leafy village close to Chester. A…

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The 1970 Watney Invitation Cup

The 1970 Watney Invitation Cup

The Watney Mann Invitation Cup (the Watney Cup to supporters) was a pre-season tournament held in the early 1970s contested by the two highest scoring teams in the four divisions of the Football League the previous season that had not been promoted or involved in European competition. Sponsored by the Watney Mann brewery, it was the first tournament in England to sell its naming rights. The Rams were invited to take part in the inaugural competition and faced Fulham at Craven Cottage in the first round…

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All in the Game

All in the Game

All in the Game was a football skills competition broadcast on ITV between 1976-1977 that featured players from English and Scottish clubs competing in ‘It’s a Knock-Out’ style events. The show was devised by the then Bristol City manager, Alan Dicks, who was convinced that the theme could be used to help City financially in their push to the First Division. The four preliminary rounds, two semi-finals and final were shown by ITV in seven 30 minute programmes in July…

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Life as Derby County’s programme editor by Gareth Davis

Life as Derby County’s programme editor by Gareth Davis

Back in my days editing The Ram between 2008/09 and 2010/11, it often felt like it was just deadline after deadline because of how a programme production week was structured. And to a certain extent that’s because it was, as we had to do a section each day in order to stick to print schedules. Tuesday and Wednesday were when we completed the vast majority of each edition, and that’s where you’re reliant on other departments for ensuring that their…

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Accrington Stanley – who are they?

Accrington Stanley – who are they?

On Saturday 26 January 2019 the Rams play Accrington Stanley, currently 14th in League One, in the fourth round of the FA Cup at the Crown Ground (known as the Wham Stadium under a sponsorship deal). Having come back from 2-0 down at home to Southampton in round 3 to draw 2-2, Derby needed extra-time and penalties in the televised replay to beat the Saints at St Mary’s Stadium after another 2-2 draw. According to Accrington Stanley’s official website, the…

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