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How Big Dunk was sold without the manager’s knowledge

Newly signed Duncan Ferguson with Newcastle United manager Ruud Gullit at a press conference at the club. (Image: Owen Humphreys / PA)

ECHO Head of Sport David Prentice wrote a book called A Grand Old Team to report 45 years ago following the Blues.

In today’s first episode, he recalls how Goodison Idol was sold to Duncan Ferguson without the knowledge of Chairman Peter Johnson’s manager Walter Smith.

Walter was his usual general shelf until I left, until I told him that there was an echo about claiming that Ferguson was unaware of the sale.

As he shouted, his face turned dark purple: “Won’t you ** walk? If you don’t hear him on the phone you’re sitting there saying I don’t know anything about this transfer! Peter then proceeded to dial Johnson’s number.

He tried his mobile phone. In his house. His office number. Number for his yacht.

Peter went to the ground. Again. The message from every answering machine kicked on the phone through his office desk was in grave danger. I’ve seen enough.

“All right, Walter, calm down,” I said. “I trust you, and I’ll try them in the office and explain to them that you know nothing about it.”

And in the end I did. But Peter’s colleague, my old school friend Lauren Rogers, who was in touch with Ecoty, but didn’t ask me, didn’t help.

He went straight to the newsdesk, where he told them that Walter was aware of the sale, but Peter was taking all possible steps for the good of the club.

Newsdesk likes the version of my events.

Walter made it clear that he would resign if no statement was issued confirming that the club was unaware of the sale. He meant it. The position of chairman of the club became obsolete.

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About the Author: Piers Parker

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