4th July 1990: I’d like to say I remember it like yesterday, but it’s coming up to 20 years ago now which is genuinely scary. After a dreadful group stage, England beat Belgium with David Platt’s goal with the last kick of the game in the second round and generously allowed Cameroon to take the lead in the quarter final with under half an hour left before finishing them off in injury time.
The win set up the mythical semi final with West Germany; despite giving away the lead again to one of the most ridiculous goals I’ve ever seen, hitting the post 57 times (or so it seemed) and having arguably the most skillfull player England has ever produced booked for causing a German to fall over and roll about, England very nearly made it to the final for the first time in 24 years.
The combination of two missed penalties and the ‘Nessun Dorma’ theme tune used by the BBC plus my outrage that the Beeb didn’t scrap the rest of the evening’s television traumatised me to the point where I couldn’t watch the video tape for a decade; I managed to watch most of it once but I’ve never watched it all the way to the end.
So in a way, the release of One Night In Turin this week will hopefully provide some kind of personal catharsis to those of us of a certain age: Â the film is launched withÂ a special premiere supported by the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation at the Gateshead Metro Centre, which includes a live Q&A session that will be screened simultaneously accross the UK via the Arts Alliance network. The session will hosted by Jim Rosenthal with the film’s director James Erskine, Pete Davies (author of ‘All Played Out‘) and some of the Italia 90 squad (the most recent confirmed player is Stuart Pearce); if you want any questions answered (who was Chris Waddle’s barber for example) or want to find the nearest cinema showing the film in your area, please go toÂ www.onenightinturin.com; the Arts Alliance Network can be found here and the Sir Bobby Robson foundation is here.
We’re looking forward to the film at 11 Lions; I’m planning to watch the whole videotape…but only under the right circumstances.
See if you can guess what they might be.