Here’s the final league table after the match at Anfield 23 years ago today, May 26, 1989. Only 11 of those teams from 1989 will be in the Premier League next season. Good season for Spurs, though – only five places and 19 points behind us.
First there was the Makita Tournament at the end of July, where we beat both Porto and Liverpool 1-0 on consecutive days. Good old George Graham, eh? Couldn’t help himself. Note the carbon copy Michael Thomas ‘goal’ pictured bottom right – identical to the Anfield title-winner, but this time sadly disallowed for offside.
Then there was the Charity Shield on August 12, where we lost 1-0 to Liverpool, with John Lukic man of the match. This set the tone for the season, and we never managed to live up to ’88-’89. The following week we started the League season at Man Utd, and were stuffed 4-1.
Interesting to note the crowds, as football was still in its 1980s slump, with recession, Heysel and of course Hillsborough all having an effect, as well as the fairly poor state of the English game overall. The league crowds were well below capacity for most clubs, who still all had terraces at this point.Average crowd for Spurs: 24, 467. Amazingly Man Utd had under 37,000.
But just 23,026 paid to get in at Wembley for the clash of England’s top two clubs in the Makita Tournament, following 20,374 for the two matches the previous day. The Charity Shield crowd was bigger, but at 63,149 still well below the capacity of Wembley.
(All images from the programme of the first home game of 1989-90 season, Arsenal V Coventry City, August 22, 1989.)
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