A very good Friday indeed - it's Baggie Shorts time
GOOD Friday? It's always a good Friday when it comes to your latest issue of Baggie Shorts.
Today we talk England internationals, hand wash some shirts, blame the board and rubber neck the moment a particular member of staff was cheeky about Tony Pulis...
WHILE a nation purred over Harry Kane's England debut, a certain person closer to home was reliving sleepless nights from many years ago.
Gez Mulholland, a former Youth Team left-back at the club and now Media Support Officer, was called to a team briefing one Friday night before an Albion U18s away game at Spurs.
“They have this lad Kane who plays on the right-side of the front three, he is excellent. Everything goes through him, and if you don’t stop him Gez, we will be in trouble,” explained then U18 boss Keith Downing.
After a night of stressing, worrying and hardly any sleep, Mulholland and team-mates arrived at Spurs’ training ground, only to find out that the majority of their U18 team had been selected for a reserve match on Monday night.
Indeed it was a team made up of U16 lads, and not Kane and co that faced Albion.
The result? A comfortable 4-2 win for the Baggies.
Speaking of Boy Wonders, Albion's very own Director of Communications Martin Swain could also play a bit when he was younger.
But, obviously, we weren't referring to him.
Back in the days when football was played in black-and-white, Swain was pitched into battle for Coventry Boys against Birmingham City's juniors. A great opportunity to impress you would have thought?
Sadly not. Our man found himself up against a floppy-haired west Countryman, who was getting a brief run out to top up his fitness.
He wasn't on for long, but he certainly made an impression on his young opponent.
A few weeks later the young Birmingham player made his full debut and went on to score a hat full of goals.
You might remember his name...
Jason Roberts was a man in demand this week.
A member of our media department was chasing our former player to chat to him about a forthcoming project.
Roberts answered his phone with great excitement, announcing that he had just single-handedly sailed his two-man boat from Grenada, deep into the Caribbean Sea.
This, to him, was clearly a big deal. For us? Just a slight pang of jealousy.
Suffice to say Roberts' location was a little different to our surroundings - a building that straddles the Walsall/Great Barr border.
Introducing the latest in our series of 'Random Photos We Like', Mssrs Williams, Talbut, Fraser, Kaye and Hope are about to realise they might have overdone it with the whitenening washing powder. Lads, you've only gone and bleached the 'stripes'...!
Tony Pulis was in inspirational form at the launch of a new Birmingham branch of the Street League project - but it was his long-standing sidekick Dave Kemp who gave everyone the biggest laugh.
Street League is a wonderful initiative, funded by Barclays and Comic Relief, which gives young adults desperate for another chance in life the opportunity to move forward through the shared love of football.
The young adults attending loved their Q&A with the gaffer which naturally saw them quizzing TP about his management secrets.
What did he have in mind, for example, should Plan A not have worked?
“I never thought about Plan A not working,” said Albion’s Head Coach.
“You ask ‘Kempy’ over there. He’s been with me all along now and I’m pretty relentless. I can be a bit of a pain in the backside..“
'Kempy’, rising to his feet, couldn’t resist a laconic one liner.
“I can confirm that.”
Hero of the week is club ‘chippy’ Dave Young who flew to the rescue after we changed backdrops on Thursday night in readiness for the regular pre-match press conference first thing Friday.
Media staff turned up 45 minutes before TP was due to speak to Sky et al to find the backdrops containing the sponsors’ brand logos crashed on the floor.
An emergency call saw Dave complete the journey from Hawthorns to the stadium and screw-fix the boards to the wall just as the Head Coach – not a man to be kept waiting - walked in the room to start.
Well done Dave.
And, on being given a summary of what had just taken place, well done TP for failing to resist the obvious quip to camera: “I’d blame the board..."
And on that note we wish you all a happy Easter. Come and see us again soon.