Graham Taylor’s Claret and Blue Army
This weekend sees Aston Villa play their first home game since the sad passing of former manager Graham Taylor. This will give Villa supporters a proper chance to say goodbye and the good news is that Villa have invited Taylor’s family, including wife Rita, as special guests to the Preston North End game.
Taylor made a pivotal contribution in his first period as Villa boss earning us instant promotion back to the top tier, when failure to do so could have seen the club languish in a the lower tiers like other big clubs have done.
He energised the club to compete for honours again, finishing runners-up to Liverpool in the league and with key signings such as David Platt (the sale of which helped Ron Atkinson rebuild the team), Paul McGrath and Dwight Yorke, helped lay the foundation for another title challenge and two League Cup wins after he had left.
The ‘My Old Man’ song that this site takes its name from has lyrics that come from the Graham Taylor era team. Several of that team will be in attendance at the game this weekend.
No doubt the Holte End will sing many Graham Taylor-related songs throughout the Preston game in tribute to give him a fine send off.
Graham Taylor’s claret and blue army!
(Club statement below video)
Club Statement of Graham Taylor Tribute
Aston Villa Football Club will pay its respects to Graham Taylor this weekend at Villa Park when we host Preston North End.
Graham enjoyed two spells as manager at the club between 1987-90 and 2002-03 – the highlights being when we won promotion back to the old First Division in 1987/88 and finished second in the top-flight in 1989/90.
Graham’s wife Rita has confirmed the family will attend as special guests of the club and we’re inviting former players who played under Graham to attend the match and be positioned pitchside for the minute’s applause, which will take place before kick-off.
Steve Staunton, who was last captain to play under Graham, will lay a wreath on the centre circle after both teams have emerged from the tunnel.
A special matchday programme will also pay tribute to Graham, including memories from former players and staff who worked with him at the club.
— My Old Man Said (@oldmansaid) January 17, 2017
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