They were the spine of a team that helped catapult Leeds United to one of the club’s greatest achievements in English football.
And the legendary midfield quartet of Gary Speed, David Batty, Gary McAllister and Gordon Strachan – integral to the club’s 1992 league title triumph - are now being immortalised on a new mural near Elland Road.
The familiar figures will greet fans heading from south of the city, passing through the Lowfields Road tunnel, to watch tomorrow’s clash against Burton Albion.
In a last minute adjustment Howard Wilkinson, the Leeds manager behind the 1992 success, also features in the centre of the mural with trophy in hand.
The public artwork commissioned by the Leeds United Supporters’ Trust - which is undergoing a few final touches - has been painted onto one of the walls of the tunnel, which is close to the Whites’ stadium, against the famous words of Marching On Together.
Dave Carrington, trust chairman, said: “This mural is really important for me because when you walk around Elland Road, and Leeds in general, there’s not a lot to recognise that achievement in 1992.
“We have stuff for Billy Bremner and the Don Revie years but we wanted something to remember that achievement because it was a hell of an achievement.”
The mural was put together by Leeds-based graphic artist Jameson Rogan, after the trust launched a crowdfunding campaign to cover the costs of the mural, and members were given a chance to vote for their favourite design.
The midfield quartet featured in the design were part of the Whites’ team that llifted the last ever Football League First Division trophy, before the top flight became known as the Premier League.
Mr Carrington said the community had come together to back the project, and he praised the finished design. He added: “It was really important to honour that midfield because we might never have one like it again.
It’s just like looking at silhouettes, you can tell who they are.”
The online appeal raised around £3,800 for the cost of the mural project, just six days after it was launched in July.
Freedom, a firm which supports the utility and construction industry, offered to do preparatory cleaning of the wall earmarked for the mural and the tunnel free of charge.
Paint company PPG also supplied free materials for the artwork. Other backers of the project include Leeds-based East Street Arts and Leeds Central MP Hilary Benn.
Remembering Leeds United’s 1992 league title glory
Leeds United won the Football League’s First Division title in the 1991–92 season.
Managed by boss Howard Wilkinson, the club was the last to capture the trophy before English football’s top tier was rebranded as the Premier League the following season. Incidently, Wilkinson remains the last English manager to win the league’s top trophy.
The midfield quartet Gary Speed, David Batty, Gary McAllister and Gordon Strachan were considered integral to the title victory.