Leeds United FA Cup heroes honoured by supporter groups as new Elland Road plaques unveiled

Leeds United's cup-winning team of 1972 were honoured with plaques on the East Stand at Elland Road to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the club's only FA Cup victory

By Joe Donnohue
Friday, 13th May 2022, 6:43 am
CHAMPIONS: 1972 FA Cup winners (L to R) David Harvey, Mick Jones, Allan Clarke, Johnny Giles, Eddie Gray and Paul Reaney are joined by family members at Elland Road in front of their new commemorative plaques marking the anniversary

A collaborative effort by Leeds United Supporters' Trust, Leeds United Americas and Leeds United's Scandinavian branch (LUSCOS) along with help from the club and artist Paul Trevillion, has honoured Leeds' 1972 FA Cup winning side.

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Commemorative plaques were unveiled on Thursday afternoon, freshly installed on the wall of the East Stand at Elland Road.

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PLAQUE: Leeds United Supporters' Trust chairman Pete Emmerson helped organise the commemorative plaques

Families of those sadly unable to see the 50-year anniversary commemorated in person, were also in attendance as Eddie Gray, Mick Jones, Allan Clarke, David Harvey, Paul Reaney and Johnny Giles were honoured.

"To see the likes of John and Allan and big Dave, Paul Reaney - it means a lot to the boys. Obviously you miss your ex-teammates and it's sad they're not here but things like this, I think it's great, terrific and a good likeness," former winger Gray said.

"We've all got an individual plaque as well which makes it even better, but it's something that we can look back on with pride, what we achieved and it'll be there forever," he said, glancing at the new installation underneath the East Stand.

Behind the idea were supporter groups LUST, LU Americas and LUSCOS. Chairman of the Leeds United Supporters' Trust Pete Emmerson was delighted with the end result: "17,000 people are going to see them, walk past them every matchday and be able to look back at our history with pride and hopefully look forward to good times on the pitch as well," he said.

"Vitally important to us was having this as a fan-based piece and working with our friends and partners in LU Americas and LUSCOS. It was only right us coming to the club as a three, saying it would be a great idea to honour the legends. The club, instantly via Angus and the PR team here were on board right from the beginning and supportive all the way through," Emmerson said.

Anders Palm of the Leeds United Supporters Club of Scandinavia made the journey for two first-team fixtures and the unveiling; the LUSCOS member was honoured to play a part in the unveiling of the 50-year anniversary plaques.

"LUST came to us and asked if we wanted to take part in this project and we have been very close to some of these players, especially Peter Lorimer and Norman Hunter. So obviously we wanted to make some lasting memory for the lost ones and also to really mark this because this is a really important time for Norwegian and Scandinavian Leeds United supporters," he said.

"Many fans really got into Leeds after this game, they remember this game.

"We're just honoured to be taking part in such a lovely project. I think they're just marvellous plaques."

Val Leon from LU Americas was equally pleased with the end result: "Even until this morning, we didn't know what we were coming for all the way. It looks beautiful."

Originally from Providence, Rhode Island but now a West Yorkshire native after marrying into a Leeds United family, she was appreciative of the opportunity to commemorate the players.

The 1972 FA Cup triumph remains the only time Leeds have lifted English football's most famous honour.

Allan Clarke's goal sealed a famous 1-0 win over Arsenal at Wembley Stadium, watched on by 100,000 spectators.