Graham Taylor: Poacher?

25 Mar 2017 in Town Talk!

Graham Taylor: Poacher? Graham Taylor: Poacher?

Simon Ashberry ponders whether we had an England manager on our books...

The whole football world seemed to be united in sadness when we heard of the death of former England manager Graham Taylor recently.
Despite the cruel newspaper headlines about turnips which he had to endure after being knocked out of the 1992 European Championship and the infamous "Do I not like that" fly-on-the-wall TV documentary about his tenure in charge of the national team, he was clearly a hugely popular figure among fans.
Although he was born in Worksop, he was a Lincolnshite Yellowbelly at heart, having grown up in Scunthorpe, where his dad worked as a sports writer on the local paper.
His modest playing career saw him turn out professionally for Scunthorpe United, Grimsby Town and Lincoln City in the 1960s.
But here's the thing - there's a possibility he actually played for Boston FC in our early days as a club.
Halfway through the 1967-68 season, someone called Graham Taylor popped up for a handful of appearances. Reports in the Boston Standard at the time described him as being a right-half - a position that the Graham Taylor of England fame was known to have played, although he was primarily known as a full back. In late 1967, Graham would have been out of favour at Grimsby Town, who were to be relegated later that season, and was about to be transferred to Lincoln City - so it would have made perfect sense for him to have been looking at other clubs in Lincolnshire, maybe at a slightly lower level. And FC were in the Eastern Counties League at the time, which was definitely a step down.
Some of the other players in the Boston FC team at that time were Eric Lister, Alan Morton, Harry Godbold and Dennis Reeson.
However, the Standard reports don't quite tally with my theory - for one thing, they seem to regard him as a "signing" rather than a loan player or triallist. And the only other former club they mention is Peterborough United rather than Grimsby or Lincoln.
Plus, the fact remains that Graham and Taylor are relatively common names so it's seem quite feasible that there was another player called that doing the rounds at the time.
Still, there remains the tantalising possibility that it WAS him. And until I get proof one way or the other, I'm certainly keeping an open mind.
As far as I can find out, there's no one left at the club who remembers that season well enough to recall whether Boston FC were indeed honoured with the presence of someone who would go on to be a future England manager - unless YOU know otherwise of course!


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