Following promotion to Division One in 1984, Sheffield Wednesday quickly re-established themselves amongst English football’s elite having been absent for 14 years.
Going into the 87/88 season, The Owls were one of Umbro’s leading brands. Not only did they swap their traditional thicker blue and white striped home shirts for a thinner, almost pin-striped affair (with white shorts) but they also exchanged a more traditional all yellow away kit for this silver and purple outfit. Sponsored by Finnish TV manufacturers Finlux, the diagonal patternation of the jersey resembled a very typical 1980’s wallpaper and duvet combo I had as a child and wouldn’t have gone amiss on the set of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.
Howard Wilkinson had led the Hillsborough club back to the big time in 1984 and stuck around until October 1988 when he swapped South Yorkshire for West Yorkshire and Leeds United, where he delivered promotion again and eventually the Championship in 1992.
Stars of the late 80’s Owls side included Lee Chapman, Brian Marwood, Nigel Worthington and Gary Megson.
Wednesday were involved in one of the longest FA Cup ties in history when it took four games (including extra time in two of the three replays) to decide a third round tie with Everton – the Toffees eventually winning through courtesy of a 5-0 win at Hillsborough in the fourth and final encounter. The first replay at Goodison Park saw Chapman’s header almost win it for the visitors before Graeme Sharp’s late volley (which I was sat directly in line with in the Bullens Road stand) took the two teams to a second replay.
Classic Retro shirts now available from Campo www.camporetro.com