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Billy Wilson RIP


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I just joined the site to acknowledge all the kind words in this thread about my dad Billy My sister came across it and sent it to me this pm. Dad sadly passed away on 21st following some surgery

Confirmed by his only other club Pompey that Billy Wilson a popular Rovers fullback of the 60s/early 70s passed away this week at a relatively young age of 71 Billy was a smashing player. The fir

Scott, just to add, in all my years watching Rovers I have never heard any Rovers fan, speak in any way other than with high regard for your Dad. There are only a select few players that fit into

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It's strange really as we spoke about him during our recent visit to Portsmouth and how he became the landlord of the Fratton pub. I remember him as a talented player about the time when full backs were morphing from cloggers to players. In one match a player was down injured and needed treatment. The ball had gone out of play in front of the Riverside and whilst waiting for the restart Billy sat on the ball and engaged in a conversation with several supporters. It was the first time I ever heard a footballer talk. It's strange what you remember.

RIP Billy and condolences to his family and friends.

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2 minutes ago, arbitro said:

It's strange really as we spoke about him during our recent visit to Portsmouth and how he became the landlord of the Fratton pub. I remember him as a talented player about the time when full backs were morphing from cloggers to players. In one match a player was down injured and needed treatment. The ball had gone out of play in front of the Riverside and whilst waiting for the restart Billy sat on the ball and engaged in a conversation with several supporters. It was the first time I ever heard a footballer talk. It's strange what you remember.

RIP Billy and condolences to his family and friends.

Yes I spoke to a pal this morning & he said he remembered being thrilled chucking the ball back to him from the Enclosure a couple of times! 

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3 hours ago, Waggy76 said:

Rip ...Played in the first game I ever saw !

He was part of my ‘first’ team after I got hooked ...you know when you could name the starting XI week in week out. It was along the lines Blacklaw Newton Wilson Clayton Coddington Hole Ferguson Darling Gilliver Rogers Connelly with Dougie in & out and like of Walter Joyce, Mulvaney, George Sharples, Ben Anderson & Gary Coxon making up the squad. First five plus Connelly & Walter Joyce  all gone now. 

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First time I saw Billy play  a pal of mine was playing on the right wing for Rochdale Reserves. He was nagging me to go up and watch him play and seeing as the opposition was Rovers " A " team I went up to Spotland. His immediate opponent was a little tubby blonde lad. My pal was pretty rapid and he gave the blonde lad a bit of a chasing. Afterwards he said to me " You're a better left back  than that blonde kid Tyrone, he was hopeless ".  I said " You're right, he'll never make a player as long as he lives ! "The little tubby blonde lad was Billy Wilson. I remembered his name from the team sheet because he was so bad ! 

Next time I saw him was a year or two later and he was in the first team ! He had slimmed down a fair bit and put on a bit of pace. He was still a bit raw but you could see he had the makings of a player. As time went by he became the tough, uncompromising little terrier of a player that rarely got a chasing off anybody. His partnership with Keith Newton gave us the two best full backs in the old second division. He was neat and tidy on the ball and quick in the tackle, the sort of player that never took a backward step irrespective of the size of the opponent.  I always thought he'd the makings of a good defensive midfield player and I believe Pompey played him there later in his career.

I came to be a big fan of his and I was gutted when he was allowed to drift away to Portsmouth. Thanks for the memories Billy, you proved me and my pal wrong.

Incidentally we had a midfielder that day that was absolutely awesome. He was like a more mobile David Dunn, he covered every blade of grass and he was tackling at one end and scoring a goal at the other. He had it all. Both me and my pal said " He can't fail, he's a world beater ". He was called Roy Wilford . This game would be in the October and at the end of the season he was released and went straight into non-league. He had a good career at that level but he never made the heights we thought he would. Funny game football.

Edited by Tyrone Shoelaces
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18 minutes ago, meadows said:

He was part of my ‘first’ team after I got hooked ...you know when you could name the starting XI week in week out. It was along the lines Blacklaw Newton Wilson Clayton Coddington Hole Ferguson Darling Gilliver Rogers Connelly with Dougie in & out and like of Walter Joyce, Mulvaney, George Sharples, Ben Anderson & Gary Coxon making up the squad. First five plus Connelly & Walter Joyce  all gone now. 

My first team was Blacklaw, Newton, Wilson, Hunter, Mulvaney, Knighton, Connelly, Metcalfe, Martin, Rogers, Hill, sub Darling. 

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55 minutes ago, Tyrone Shoelaces said:

First time I saw Billy play  a pal of mine was playing on the right wing for Rochdale Reserves. He was nagging me to go up and watch him play and seeing as the opposition was Rovers " A " team I went up to Spotland. His immediate opponent was a little tubby blonde lad. My pal was pretty rapid and he gave the blonde lad a bit of a chasing. Afterwards he said to me " You're a better left back  than that blonde kid Tyrone, he was hopeless ".  I said " You're right, he'll never make a player as long as he lives ! "The little tubby blonde lad was Billy Wilson. I remembered his name from the team sheet because he was so bad ! 

Next time I saw him was a year or two later and he was in the first team ! He had slimmed down a fair bit and put on a bit of pace. He was still a bit raw but you could see he had the makings of a player. As time went by he became the tough, uncompromising little terrier of a player that rarely got a chasing off anybody. His partnership with Keith Newton gave us the two best full backs in the old second division. He was neat and tidy on the ball and quick in the tackle, the sort of player that never took a backward step irrespective of the size of the opponent.  I always thought he'd the makings of a good defensive midfield player and I believe Pompey played him there later in his career.

I came to be a big fan of his and I was gutted when he was allowed to drift away to Portsmouth. Thanks for the memories Billy, you proved me and my pal wrong.

Incidentally we had a midfielder that day that was absolutely awesome. He was like a more mobile David Dunn, he covered every blade of grass and he was tackling at one end and scoring a goal at the other. He had it all. Both me and my pal said " He can't fail, he's a world beater ". He was called Roy Wilford . This game would be in the October and at the end of the season he was released and went straight into non-league. He had a good career at that level but he never made the heights we thought he would. Funny game football.

Great anecdotes. I remember earnestly & genuinely asking my dad why Billy wasn’t in the England side as he was equally as good for us on the left as Keith was on the right. Just off the top of my head I can’t think who replaced the magnificent Ray Wilson from the 1966 side but I honestly thought Billy should have had it!

 

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45 minutes ago, Exiled in Toronto said:

My first team was Blacklaw, Newton, Wilson, Hunter, Mulvaney, Knighton, Connelly, Metcalfe, Martin, Rogers, Hill, sub Darling. 

Loved watching this team. Alan Hunter, class player, Kenny Knighton, bustling midfielder, Eamonn, my favourite at that time. If we had a better centre half and left winger, we could have done something with this team. Connelly was at the end of his career but scored plenty of goals for a winger.Happy days in the Darren End.

 

 

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48 minutes ago, Exiled in Toronto said:

My first team was Blacklaw, Newton, Wilson, Hunter, Mulvaney, Knighton, Connelly, Metcalfe, Martin, Rogers, Hill, sub Darling. 

Yes I bet Ronnnie and Bryan were still around but coming to the tail end. One of my big regrets is that I saw them both play but not at the level they’d made themselves legends. I envy those who saw the 63-64 forward line at its peak. But at least I saw them. 

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27 minutes ago, meadows said:

Yes I bet Ronnnie and Bryan were still around but coming to the tail end. One of my big regrets is that I saw them both play but not at the level they’d made themselves legends. I envy those who saw the 63-64 forward line at its peak. But at least I saw them. 

Me too Meadows. Saw them both but Dougie at that time was knackered with injured knees. Saw the famous five of Fergie, McAvoy, Pickering, Douglas, Harrison but can’t remember too much as I was 7 at the time. ?

Edited by Stonesrick
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RIP Billy, he lived on Langdale, in one of the Semi's backing on to the canal, actually opposite my Grandad's, with whom he worked at the Star. When I joined the Navy and was posted in Portsmouth, my Grandad told me to go and see him in his pub, he had moved from Fratton to one Fareham way I think, he was a lovely bloke and loved me coming in in the blue and white halves!

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Just now, Stonesrick said:

Me too Meadows. Saw them both but Dougie at that time was knackered with injured knees. Saw the famous five of Fergie, McAvoy, Pickering, Douglas, Harrison but can’t remember too much as I was 7 at the time. ?

I was privileged to see that team in their prime. When they were on song they were an absolute goal scoring machine. Same story as before though - no cover  for players injured or not quite at their peak and no money to get any. If only Jack had been born 30 years sooner. Now I'm being greedy.

Edited by Tyrone Shoelaces
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A wonderful full-back and one of a number of youngsters who came down from the North-east in the early sixties - Martin Hall, Roland Horrey, Dick Mulvaney Dave Holt and Billy who I well remember watching in the reserves before Billy and Dick broke into the first team.  Billy was a great attacking full-back who served the club well during a difficult period.  I hope we do something to remember him on Sunday before the Wigan game.

2 hours ago, meadows said:

Yes I bet Ronnnie and Bryan were still around but coming to the tail end. One of my big regrets is that I saw them both play but not at the level they’d made themselves legends. I envy those who saw the 63-64 forward line at its peak. But at least I saw them. 

I've seen nothing better than that 63-64 forward line at Ewood Park and the 7-2 destruction of the famous Spurs team remains one of my great Ewood memories.

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I'm really sad to hear that Billy has passed away. He was my first Rovers hero and someone who I really admired as a player. He was totally committed and it's a shame there probably isn't any footage of him playing, as a lot of so called defenders playing today could learn an awful lot from the way he played the game. He was a no-nonsense, get the job done player who gave his all in every game. No doubt he will be playing in heavens All Star X1 team right now. RIP fella.  

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