On This Day: A European glory night for the Hammers in 1976

Taking a look back at a classic West Ham United moment on this day in history, in association with Basset & Gold....

It was a night to remember for those in Claret and Blue as the Hammers overturned a 2-1 away deficit to make it through to the Cup Winners’ Cup final at the expense of Eintracht Frankfurt on this day in 1976.

The German side had breezed through the previous rounds of the competition but they were made to work in the first leg, coming from behind after cancelling out Graham Paddon’s stinging shot.

39,202 fans braved the pouring rain and packed themselves into the Boleyn Ground to witness a scintillating comeback from the Irons in the return leg.

Frankfurt kept their slender lead going into the break but, four minutes after the interval, West Ham were level. Frank Lampard showed his talents yet again as his whipped cross teed up Trevor Brooking whose header looped into the top corner.

Brooking’s raking pass then took out the whole defence and dropped to the feet of Keith Robson. The winger steadied himself before firing into the top corner as the Boleyn Ground erupted on 67 minutes.

The unstoppable Brooking then added to his tally for the night ten minutes later, cutting inside before curling an effort past the helpless Kunter. 

Frankfurt ensured there was a nervy finish, pulling one back with three minutes to go, but the Hammers showed some steel and secured their spot in the final. 

The men who staged the comeback

Mervyn Day

Day appeared between the sticks for the Hammers on this famous night before going on to turn out for the likes of Leyton Orient, Aston Villa and Leeds United in his successful career. 

Day signed a youth contract with Ron Greenwood's Hammers in July 1971 and remained at the club for eight years.  

Keith Coleman

Coleman signed for the Irons in September 1973 from Sunderland for £20,000. He was an ever-present for the Hammers in his first season and went on to make over 100 appearances despite struggling to keep hold of a starting place throughout the mid-seventies. In August 1977 the right back moved to Belgian club Mechelen before returning to his native north east to play for Darlington. 

Frank Lampard

An undisputed club legend, Frank Lampard made 670 appearances in Claret and Blue, winning two FA Cups and the Second Division title in 1981. Lampard made the left-back spot his own after plying his trade in the club’s academy.

Billy Bonds

Another West Ham player that needs no introduction, Billy Bonds MBE is West Ham's all-time appearance record holder with 799 outings in the Claret and Blue. Bonds skippered the Irons to two FA Cup titles, was named Hammer of the Year four times and has a Stand at London Stadium named after him. He was also given the club’s first ever Lifetime Achievement Award in 2012/13.

Tommy Taylor

Spending a decade with the Hammers, Taylor enjoyed a successful period with the Hammers and ended his playing career where it began with Leyton Orient. The centre-back then moved into coaching, a job that took him here, there and everywhere. He led Orient to two Third Division play-off final defeats before going on to manage in Finland, the Caribbean and Norway. 

John McDowell

McDowell’s frizzy haircut made the full-back instantly recognisable from the terraces, and he registered over 300 appearances for the Irons before moving to Norwich City for around £90,000. 

Pat Holland

Patsy was an integral player in the Hammers’ 1975 FA Cup winning side and scored a goal in the final of the European Cup Winners’ Cup as the Irons fell 4-2 to Anderlecht. In 1981, after making over 270 appearances, the winger suffered a knee injury, meaning he would never play for West Ham’s first team again. He did, however, pick up a winners’ medal as the Irons stormed to the Second Division title. He has since enjoyed a successful career as a scout with a number of London clubs.

Graham Paddon

Well-known for his long throw, Paddon spent some time in the United States with Tampa Bay Rowdies before ending his playing career at Alfreton Town. He then moved into coaching, working with Alan Ball at Portsmouth, and remained with Ball’s coaching staff when he took charge of Stoke City. Paddon saw out the end of the 1990/91 season as caretaker manager after Ball’s dismissal. Paddon sadly died in 2007 at his home in Norfolk.

Billy Jennings

The striker made himself an instant fans’ favourite after scoring on his debut against Sheffield United in 1974. He didn’t come cheap - the Hammers had to part with £110,000 to prise him away from Watford - and the front man netted 39 times in 110 matches.

Jennings then spent a brief spell on loan in the States with Chicago Sting before playing for the likes of Leyton Orient, Luton Town, Dagenham, Bishop’s Stortford and Heybridge Swifts.

Trevor Brooking

Only three players have made more appearances for the Hammers than Brooking, and the forward is West Ham United’s eighth best ever scorer with an incredible 102 goals.

Sir Trevor scored the winning goal in the 1980 FA Cup final with his 13th-minute header sealing the famous win over Arsenal. 

Keith Robson

Robson’s goal in the 1976 European Cup Winners’ Cup semi-final went down in folklore as one of the most memorable goals in the Boleyn Ground’s history. Signed from Newcastle in 1974, Robson enjoyed a successful spell at the Hammers and, towards the end of his time at the club, was shipped out on loan to Team Hawaii where he teamed up with ex-Iron Yılmaz Orhan for the club’s only season. He then spent time with Cardiff, Norwich, Leicester and Carlisle before a brief spell in China and then as assistant manager at Wroxham. 

Basset & Gold are West Ham United's official sleeve sponsor and eSports partner. Their mission is to challenge the market and create investment opportunities that are easy to understand, transparent and continuously control risk, while maintaining market-leading returns that meet investment goals. Click here to find out more.