Dicks - United penalty was one of my greatest moments

Julian Dicks

It has been nearly twenty-two years since Julian Dicks scored one of his greatest goals for West Ham United – a memorable penalty to earn a draw against Manchester United at Upton Park.

December 8 1996 will always be remembered as one of the great matches under the lights in east London after the Hammers came from two goals down to earn a draw against the Premier League champions.

After Florin Raducioiu had pulled a goal back with 12 minutes to go, Michael Hughes was then brought down inside the area and it was left for Dicks to fire an unstoppable penalty past Peter Schmeichel, to cue wild celebrations around Upton Park.

It was a moment that Dicks will always remember...


I have to be honest and admit the game doesn't feel like over 20-years ago as I keep seeing the penalty and it is amazing how time flies, but I remember it like it was yesterday.

It was a big moment because we had come back from two goals down and at that stage we thought it was going to be a big defeat.

They had players like Beckham, Cantona, Giggs, who were great players and it is not easy to play them at the best of times, especially when you are 2-0 down.

Julian Dicks and Eric Cantona

I remember Ludo was fantastic once again that afternoon and we thought we were going to get a beating. But Harry brought on Florin and he brought us back into the game with a great goal.

You always have a chance when you are playing at Upton Park, no matter who you are playing against and the players sensed that.

We then got the penalty after Hughes was taken out by Schmeichel. Michael probably made more of it but we got the decision our way.

I remember the ball was on the spot and the players were arguing. Cantona then came over to me and said 'Dicks, small goal.'

I managed to score and remember running past Cantona on the way back and he winked at me. That was one penalty that I was not going to miss.

I managed to score and remember running past Cantona on the way back and he winked at me. That was one penalty that I was not going to miss.

Julian Dicks

I will always remember the celebrations and you feel a lot of emotion when the ball goes in, because if I had missed it people would have been talking about it for a long time, so to get a point at that stage was a great achievement for the boys.

Every goal I scored for West Ham was special, whether it was the penalty or header I scored against Tottenham, but because it was Manchester United and they were a fantastic side with fantastic players, it made it even more special.

People talk about the great nights at Upton Park, but for me that was one of the special nights and one of my best memories.

I am not on Twitter, but my daughter keeps sending me links and I never get bored of watching it back.