Steve Bruce has revealed how he and his Manchester United teammates partied until 3:30am on a Monday morning despite having a game to play the next night.
“The match was being played on a Sunday afternoon. As we were playing Blackburn on the Monday night, we went in for a little light training,” Bruce recalled.
“The instructions from the gaffer as we all headed home afterwards were explicit: Nobody was to watch the Villa game on television. He went to play golf!
“Despite these orders, I settled down to watch it all and, bless him, Oldham midfielder Nick Henry became the toast of Old Trafford by breaking the deadlock.
“Oldham managed to hold on for a much-needed win, sparking a huge party — at my house.
“Within minutes, Peter Schmeichel — who lived virtually next door — popped in. Then Paul Parker and various other players turned up.
“I thought I had better let the gaffer know what was going on, so I managed to get hold of him on the phone, saying: ‘There’s a bit of a gathering at my house, a few of the lads have turned up.’
“‘Ok,’ he replied, ‘how many?’
“I said: ‘Well, it’s more than a few — there’s about 25 of them round here!’
“He had people at his house, too, and I think our party actually stopped at 3.30am. Not everyone went home. I went to bed and was awoken a few hours later by the sound of glasses tinkling in the kitchen. I went downstairs to investigate and was greeted by the sight of Bryan Robson and his wife, Denise, washing up and mopping the kitchen floor.
“It was hardly the ideal preparation for a sell-out crowd wanting to party but, whether through elation or relief, we managed to beat Blackburn 3-1 and the carnival really began. There was a star-studded gathering at Old Trafford that night. Law, Best and Charlton were all there. Sir Matt Busby, who had managed the ’67 team, too.
“It was a fabulous evening, the atmosphere so different to 12 months earlier when we had let it slip.”