Friday, 13 February 2015

From Upton Park to Cambridge via the Emirates

The road to Cambridge for my half-marathon in support of GOSH continues, as I completed my run five times around Upton Park on Thursday (12th). 

It was quite emotional visiting the ground where I was a season ticket holder from the late 80s until 2010, especially as in 18 months' time the ground will be closed forever.

Next stop is the same but at Arsenal's Emirates Stadium, then finally it is the big day on 8th March and the Cambridge half-marathon.

Remember to sponsor me here and help raise much needed funds for Great Ormond Street Hospital.  Find out more about why I ran round Upton Park and why the Emirates is next here.

West Ham and England fans can also bid to win for a signed copy of legend, Martin Peters' autobiography here. Martin Peters will be best remembered as a vital member of England's Word Cup winning team of 1966. 

Martin Peters
Martin has recently been announced as the third recipient of the West Ham's Lifetime Achievement Award. The 1966 World Cup winner will be honoured at the annual Player Awards brought to you by Betway and in aid of the Academy, which this year take place on Wednesday 6 May at the London Hilton on Park Lane.

71-year-old Peters came through the famed Academy at West Ham to play a pivotal role in the golden period of the 1960s, even though he missed out on an involvement in the 1964 FA Cup winning effort. The following year he played a full role as the Hammers lifted the European Cup Winners' Cup and then returned to Wembley a year later to win the World Cup with England.

He would go on to score exactly 100 goals for the Hammers in 364 appearances - a fine record for a midfielder - before enjoying further success with Tottenham Hotspur and Norwich City, ending a remarkable 22-year professional career with Sheffield United.

The complete midfielder, Peters' versatility was such that he played in every position for the Hammers - including in goal when replacing the injured Brian Rhodes in just his third game for the Club.

Born in Plaistow on 8 November 1943, Peters came through the ranks at his local Club to sign as an apprentice under manager Ted Fenton in 1959.

He would make his first team debut on Good Friday 1962 in a 4-1 home victory against Cardiff City. Peters' first goal for the Club would follow in September of that year.
Peters made 36 League appearances in 1962/63 and 32 in 1963/64, but would not be involved as the Hammers won their first FA Cup that year. He would not miss out twelve months later as West Ham defeated TSV 1860 Munich to win the European Cup Winners' Cup.

A further chance for Hammers silverware arrived in 1966 when they reached the League Cup final, in those days played over two legs. Peters scored in the second game, but West Bromwich Albion triumphed 5-3 on aggregate. However, Peters, Bobby Moore and Geoff Hurst bounced back from that disappointment to lead England to World Cup glory.
The 1968/69 season would be Peters' most prolific for the Hammers, as he knocked in 24 goals from 48 matches, and a year later he was on the move to north London, as Tottenham Hotspur paid £200,000 for his services. Never mind...

In total he made 882 appearances in professional football, scoring 220 goals and adding a further 20 to that in 67 England caps.

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