How one Red was reunited with a lost treasure
The majority of match-going Reds left Old Trafford high on adrenaline following Victor Lindelof’s late leveller against Burnley in January, but one lost cause remained unrecovered.
“He started following United before the war, and passed that obsession on to me,”Mags tells us.
“Oh holiday in Plymouth, he bought me this scarf. During the ‘70s I put patches and pin badges on it, and it’s been everywhere with me. I never go to the match without it. Ever. It’s been around Europe, Moscow. I’ve not missed a final since ‘85.”
“You want to watch the match! I couldn’t really do much else. We rang United and the Metrolink the next day – nothing. I never thought I’d see it again.
“I’m not even a slightly sentimental person. I was going to bury it with Dad when he died in 2002. He said that would be lovely, but he wasn’t sentimental either, so I didn’t! I put an ‘Eric the King’ banner on his coffin instead, which really irritated the family. But sod it; he was my dad!”
“I was shocked,”Mags recalls.
“I phoned Mick [who doesn’t have email or internet access] and he was out walking. Then he got into his house but didn’t have his glasses. I kept saying,“Does it have the Wembley ‘77 patch on the right-hand side?’ And he’s saying, ‘I can’t really see!’”
“He said he had a lime green bobble on, so I saw him right away by Macari’s chippy,”continues Mags.
“There were tears in my eyes. He said, ‘Stop it! I’m going to start in a minute!’
“I gave him a card and some money to get a drink. If I could have given him a thousand pounds, I would have. If Mick hadn’t bought the programme, I’d have never got it back. It’s a bit of fate.”
“It sounds so stupid, but when I see the first United player run out, I kiss the badge on the right side for him.”