The famous Northumbrian FA Cup giant-killers Blyth Spartans go into another first round proper this weekend against a fellow non-league side with their own history of knocking bigger opposition to the canvas, Altrincham.


Having had memorable FA Cup runs in 1977-78 – when they reached the 5th Round – and more recently in 2008-09 when Sam Allardyce’s Premier League Blackburn won a narrow 1-0 3rd round win at the ‘cosy’ surrounds of Croft Park, the 1993-94 season was memorable…well…for not very much (OK they gained promotion to the Northern Premier League).

Except, that is, for this beauty of a football shirt made by Hogger Sports – the same people who brought us the coloured uniforms at the 1992 Cricket World Cup.


Even more memorable is the sponsorship deal Blyth had with Geordie ‘cultural’ pamphlet ‘Viz’ – home of Biffa Bacon, The Fat Slags, Roger Mellie, Sid The Sexist, The Vibrating Bum Faced Goats, The Rock n’ Roll Dog Turds, Specky Twat, Big Vern and so many more. According to something what I read, Viz wanted the advertising slogan to read ‘Drink beer, smoke tabs’ – a request politely turned down by the enlightened thinkers at the FA.

Blyth’s star men of the time were Craig Liddle – who went on to play for Bryan Robson’s Middlesbrough in the Premiership – and goal poacher Stevie Pyle.

(Photo credit to the excellent


Classic retro shirts available from