Tony Gale has evoked memories of a classic contest from yesteryear as West Ham United prepare for the Carling Cup quarter-final visit of Everton on Wednesday.
Speaking to WHUTV from inside the Boleyn Ground home dressing room, the former Hammers defender recalled the 1990/91 FA Cup last eight-meeting between the two teams. On 11 March 1991, Billy Bonds side were in the old second division and welcoming top-flight opposition that boasted the likes of Kevin Ratcliffe, Pat Nevin and Graeme Sharp.
Just over 28,000 were packed into the stadium that night and the roof nearly lifted off when defender Colin Foster scored an unlikely volleyed goal on 33 minutes. That was nothing like the noise, however, that greeted Stuart Slater's mazy run and shot that put West Ham United on the brink of the semi-finals. Dave Watson pulled a goal back in the closing stages but the Hammers hung on to go through - although the Wembley dream ended with a 4-0 defeat by Nottingham Forest.
Gale, the man cruelly sent-off in that semi-final, has only fond memories of the quarter-final duel. "Upton Park was buzzing that night and Stuart Slater was absolutely magnificent. He was given a free role, he played on the right, the left and just behind the strikers," he said. "He absolutely destroyed Everton.
"I am hoping that the Carling Cup will prove the same and bring out another hero for West Ham on the night. I am sure the supporters are going to be right behind the team. It is going to be a magnificent night. Don't forget, be here!"
You can catch up with Stuart Slater in a special feature in Wednesday night's matchday programme. Also, log on register with WHUTV now to hear more from Galey, speaking exclusively from the dressing rooms, on:
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