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Bez Lifts the Lid...
 Life with United...and beyond   Part XV

Stick your blue flag up your rear end. Bez is back, and as usual toon-related stuff and nonsense isn't far away - this episode involves:

Simon Le Bon's other 'alf, daft colleagues and a dwarf, a dwarf (it's plain to see.....)  

John Beresford spills the beans on Chelsea:

1993-94 (a) Lost 1-0

Mark Stein got the only goal and I got an absolute bollocking from Keegan for it. Watto [Steve Watson] was playing right back and had the ball on the right with loads and loads of time, so I made a run up the left for him to clip a diagonal ball across. Anyway, instead of playing the easy ball forward Watto tries to dribble it past a couple of their blokes and gets caught. I legged it back trying to catch up with Stein and by the time I caught him he side-stepped me and scored. KK went mad at half-time and had a real dig at me. I said all Watto needed to do was chip it forward and Keegan says, in front of the whole team, "You know what he's like, you should have known he would do something stupid." Wattos face was a picture. He's pretty thick-skinned, though and laughed it off. He knew himself that when he was under pressure he would often do something daft.

1994-95 (h) Won 4-2 (Cole 2, Fox, Lee)

Dennis Wise got himself sent off by swearing at the linesman in this one. I know Dennis quite well and I remember saying to him in the game that he'd talk his way off in a minute. It was one of those where the crowd were having such a go at him that he was getting madder and madder. Some players you can just see the red mists descend and I knew he was losing it. It's great when you've got a massive crowd and they can almost do your job for you. It was something I'd never experienced at Barnsley and I think the officials can be swayed a bit by big crowds. That day it was definitely the crowd that got Dennis sent off and as he went down the tunnel I took great delight in shouting, "Told you!" at him....

1995-96 (a) Lost 1-0

We'd been beaten and the old ex-Chelsea player Alan Hudson had a swipe at Keegan after the game, although he was having a go at the players rather than KK himself. Keegan couldn't stand that and just lost it completely. In the end Terry Mac had to physically hold him back as KK was up for decking the bloke. We were right behind him, saying "Go on gaffer!" but it never quite came to blows.

I was sub for this game and KK never liked to change a winning side but in his teamtalk he said that he'd had to make an exception to bring back Peter Beardsley and apologised to the player he's had to leave out. When he said it I couldn't help piping up, "Oh, am I not a special case then?" as a joke but Keegan didn't like it and told me if I had a problem to see him afterwards, which I did. We sorted it out.

1995-96 FA Cup Replay (h) 2-2 - lost on pens (Albert, Beardsley) 

We never prepared for penalties it was just down to whoever fancied taking one on the night. Keegan went round all of us asking who would take one. David Batty refused, saying he didn't take penalties - he didn't like them. I've got to admit I was surprised as he was a great striker of the ball. Imagine how I felt (and KK probably) a couple of years later when he went up to take a penalty against Argentina in the World Cup semi-final. I nearly fell off my chair...!!

1996-97 (a) Drew 1-1 (Shearer)

It was the game after Batty had got sent off for lashing out at Mark Hughes and we were all sitting in the players' bar after the game. I turned to Bats and said, "Here mate, this'll take your mind off it," pointing to a woman up the corner who I thought was nice-looking. "Who?" said Rob Lee, "Her, there, up the corner." "Are you taking the piss?" Rob says. I didn't know what he meant, she seemed nice enough looking to me. The lads thought it was hilarious but I still hadn't twigged. It was only after about ten minutes one of them told me it was Yasmin Le Bon who was in London for some fashion week....

Niall MacKenzie

Page last updated 24 June, 2009