Promotion party paves the way

26 April 1958
Division 2
Ayresome Park
Middlesbrough 1-3 West Ham United

A jubilant crowd of 1,000 Hammers fans waited imperiously on the King's Cross platform to greet a West Ham United team that had just steamed back to top flight football for the first time since 1932.

The final game of the 1957/58 campaign saw top scorer Johnny Dick set Hammers on their way with a deft backheel to claim his 21st goal of the season. And then Malcolm Musgrove's ninth and Vic Keeble's 19th of the term, at last secured the second division title for Ted Fenton's side. That meant the champions headed south having won 23 and drawn eleven of their 42 games, scoring 101 goals along the way.

"This is, indeed, a wonderful moment for us," confessed proud chairman Reg Pratt. "It is said that if you want something badly enough you'll get it in the end. We have waited for this occasion for a very long time, and now regard our present success not so much as an end but as a new beginning, a challenge, a spur to greater efforts."

These were prophetic words for the club were about to embark upon a 19-season run in the first division, which was destined to incorporate those caviar years of the mid-60s and Moore, Hurst and Peters representing West Ham United during both the club's and England's finest sporting hour.

West Ham United: Gregory, Bond, Cantwell, Malcolm, Brown, Nelson, Grice, Smith, Keeble, Dick, Musgrove.