LAWRIE McMENEMY

lawrie

After an inglorious playing career, ‘Big’ Lawrie McMenemy moved into coaching with his hometown team, Gateshead, before working his way up through the lower divisions, until eventually guiding Second Division Southampton to the 1976 FA Cup when they shocked the mighty Manchester United. In this picture we get a rare glimpse of ‘Little’ Lawrie who was ‘Big’ Lawrie’s tiny conjoined twin attached to his right shoulder. Not much is known about ‘Little’ Lawrie except some accounts from the Southampton team of the early eighties. They credit ‘Little’ Lawrie with being the tactical brains behind Southampton’s runner-up spot in the old First Division in 1984. ‘Big’ Lawrie would listen intently during games to the coaching tips whispered into his ear by his smaller sibling hidden beneath his brown mack. By 1985, ‘Big’ Lawrie, believing his own hype, thought he no longer needed to listen to ‘Little’ Lawrie anymore, and against the wee man’s advice he took the Sunderland job becoming the highest paid manager in the country. But it all went wrong for the Newcastle United fan at Roker Park without ‘Little’ Lawrie’s help, as he played a massive part in getting the Mackems relegated to the third tier of English football in 1987. ‘Big’ Lawrie went on to work as a coach with England and manage Northern Ireland in his later career. After their split, ‘Little’ Lawrie continued to hide in jackets and whisper pearls of footballing wisdom into the right ears of top managers such as Sir Alex Ferguson, Arsene Wenger and Pep Guardiola.

MARK GODFREY

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