On This Day - 3 January


Lee Bowyer
Date of birth: 3 January 1977
Birthplace: Poplar
National team: England
Clubs: Charlton Athletic, Leeds United, West Ham United, Newcastle United, West Ham United, Birmingham City, Ipswich Town

A combative midfielder capped once by England, Lee Bowyer was born just a stone's throw from the Boleyn Ground. Despite being based north of the River Thames, Bowyer joined Charlton Athletic as a trainee in April 1994. Two years later, the highly-rated youngster was snapped up by Leeds United manager David O'Leary. At Elland Road, Bowyer became one of the country's most-feared midfielders, playing an influential role in the Yorkshire club's rise to the top of the game both at home and in Europe. In total, Bowyer scored 62 goals in 257 games for Leeds.

Bowyer moved back to London in early 2003, joining West Ham on a six-month contract. After making eleven appearances, the player left the club that summer. From there, the Londoner headed back up north, linking up with Newcastle United. He went on to make 98 appearances for the Magpies, scoring eleven times. Bowyer rejoined West Ham in June 2006 for a second spell before continuing his career at Birmingham City and then Ipswich Town. A former England Under-21 international, he made his one appearance for the senior side under Sven-Goran Eriksson in a friendly against Portugal in September 2002.

Classic Match

West Ham United 2-1 Emley
FA Cup third round
3 January 1998

A crowd of 18,629 turned out at the Boleyn Ground to see West Ham United hold off the challenge of non-league Emley. The Unibond League outfit were even dreaming of pulling off a major upset when hairdressers' supervisor Paul David planted a 56th minute header past Craig Forrest to level the scores at 1-1. Thankfully, however, John Hartson's 82nd-minute goal was enough to secure the Hammers' passage into the fourth round.

Frank Lampard looked like he had opened the floodgates when he put the home side ahead in just the fourth minutes. Emley's task got even harder when key defender Neil Lacey was forced to leave the pitch in tears shortly afterwards. However, the minnows held on and delighted their 2,000-strong support by pushing the Premier League side to the limit.