28th April 2001- New Division One, Watford 1 Tranmere Rovers 1

GT’s last home game in charge.

http://watford.fcdb.info?id=4451

BBC Sport Allan Nielsen, Graham Taylor’s most expensive signing at £2.3m, spared the former England manager’s blushes at his Vicarage Road farewell.  The Danish international popped up in the last minute to head an equaliser but the point salvaged is not enough to keep Watford’s play-off hopes alive.

BSAD image Long ago, the script was written for Graham Taylor’s last match at Vicarage Road. One final wave of galloping attacks to see off already-relegated opponents. One last thumping victory, in the thrilling style of so many before it. Hat-tricks for Tommys Mooney and Smith to celebrate their end-of-season awards for best player and young player respectively. And, in the final minute of injury time, the seventh goal to crown it all, an astonishing, crashing-off-the-crossbar blast from thirty yards by the returning Richard Johnson.

BSAD image He was more what we came to see than a relegated bunch of fighters, and an unquantifiable bunch of mid- to upper-table wanderers who represent what, if not why, he’s leaving behind by retiring. His direction was where we were looking, as a game that barely registers in the mind even this soon after its conclusion played itself into oblivion. When he showed up in the dugout, we asked for a wave, since chanting something along the lines of “Graham, give us a year or two more, we’re worthy, and by the way, thanks for making us all stand apart from whatever crowd we’ve found ourselves in from the age of [your age in 1977] to now” is just unfeasible.

English Division OneTable »
Barnsley0-1Bolton Wanderers 
Birmingham City1-0Grimsby Town 
Crewe Alexandra1-3Preston North End 
Crystal Palace0-2Wolverhampton Wndrs 
Fulham1-1Wimbledon 
Norwich City1-0Sheffield Wednesday 
Nottingham Forest0-1Gillingham 
Queens Park Rangers0-3Stockport County 
Sheffield United2-0Burnley 
Watford1-1Tranmere Rovers 
West Bromwich Albion1-1Huddersfield Town
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