Hard Case: The Autobiography of Jimmy Case
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Jimmy Case is best remembered for a spectacular FA Cup final goal and a deserved reputation as one of football's genuine hard men. But that does scant justice to a career that covered more than 700 appearances for 7 league clubs and did not end until he retired, through injury, at the age of 41.Raised on Merseyside, Jimmy began at his beloved Liverpool, becoming a key player in the all-conquering team of the late 1970s alongside stars like Kevin Keegan, John Toshack, Ray Clemence, Phil Thompson, Kenny Dalglish and his two great mates, Tommy Smith and Ray Kennedy. At Anfield, where he was signed by Bill Shankly and guided by Bob Paisley, Jimmy won a boxful of medals: four league titles, three European cups plus a host of other domestic honours which tell the truth about Jimmy Case - that he had much more than a tough tackle and a ferocious shot. As Jimmy himself says, you couldn't get in that Liverpool team if you couldn't play.His ambition was to play his entire career at Liverpool but fate sent him on a different route: to Brighton, where he almost won the FA Cup; to Southampton, where he played more than 200 games; to Bournemouth; Halifax; Wrexham; and a single outing for Darlington. Along the way he came up against players like Andy Gray, Graeme Souness, David Speedie, Graeme Sharp and Norman Whiteside, often with painful results.Packed with incident and anecdotes, usually funny - but occasionally sad - this is the story of Jimmy Case, a true football legend.
floor and chinned him with a good right-hander and suddenly all the players were pitching in to hold us apart. Joe shouted, ‘Alec, you walk that way to the left, and Jimmy Case, you walk that way to the right. The rest of you go back and get a cup of tea.’ The next day I was called into Joe Fagan’s office and I really thought I was in for the chop. Joe sat me down and told me in no uncertain terms that I had lifted my hands and struck another player. He ripped into me, telling me that if it had
towards the end of the day the lads were flagging, especially from the effects of that journey and beer the day before. When we got back to the hotel the organisers got all the players together and said we could have a rest day the following day so we all got round the pool in our Speedos, splitting up into small groups and having a few chilled ones. I was with the likes of Steve Foster, Andy Townsend and Barry Horne, all lads from my Brighton days. In another group were the London boys: Kenny
door and leaving him, but Ray seems to be OK in himself. He copes with the illness, but I do know he has his dark days. The PFA did, at one time, help fund a wet room for him so he could take a shower while sitting down; also the former players at Liverpool sorted out a new, sturdier kitchen for him because he was forever breaking the drawers by leaning on them as he was getting about. And he has his son and daughter, Dale and Cara, living nearby, so Ray’s OK. We’ve got a lot of great memories
I said, and then added, ‘and the European Cup is even heavier.’ He’s a good lad is John and he took it in the right spirit… but I’m certain I could hear him swearing under his breath. We had a good night, and nights like that are enjoyable, but to be perfectly honest, I am never happier than when I’m on the banks of the River Test with a fishing rod in my hand. Fishing is something I have done since I was a kid, starting off on Calderstones Park in Liverpool, just a short bike ride from my home.
summit. Singling out Rodgers for praise is in no way intended to play down the contribution of every player that pulled on the shirt during the past season. They have been exceptional – but Liverpool have had exceptional players in the past who have not been able to deliver a championship: players like Robbie Fowler, Michael Owen, Jamie Carragher, Stan Collymore, Paul Ince, Jamie Redknapp, Dietmar Hamann, Jason McAteer… it’s a long list. But unlike some of the managers since 1990, a list that