On this day in 2000: Steve Mungall leaves Tranmere Rovers after 21-years

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Steve Mungall became a legend at TRFC (image: Ebay)

The word legend, can be passed around in football faster than a a ball in a in-form Pep Guardiola training session, but if one man deserves the accolade from the Tranmere Rovers faithful it is none other than Steve Mungall.

In 1979, the also significant manager Johnny King secured the signature of the current 59-year-old from Scottish side Motherwell, and the defender then went on to feature 500 times for The Rovers in a football career that lasted until 1996.

With his playing days were behind him, his connection to Tranmere remained as strong as ever as Mugnall took up a coaching position working his way up the pyramid before eventually becoming the head of the centre of excellence.

On October 26th 2000, the Scotsman decided his time on Birkenhead had come to end as he made his exit to pursue a business career, but with two decades sacrificed to the club, he is firmly embedded in Prenton Park history.

Steve Mungall.pngThrough dark times, and celebrations, Mungall saw it all – and this was just in the 1980’s – as Tranmere went into administration in 1987, before turning their troubles around and experiencing their most successful period in history in the years that followed.

Under the new ownership of local businessman Pete Johnson, The Super White Army survived and it was not long before Wembley beckoned as The Rovers qualified for the Football League Centenary Tournament beating Wimbledon and Newcastle on their way.

A King signing, and a valuable asset to the manager during his second spell in charge from 1987 onwards, during which the club played at Wembley five-times, won two promotions and was in the promotion battle to enter the Premier League on three separate occasions.

Despite not staying away from the Beautiful game for long Mungall, left behind a playing career only bettered by Ray Mathias, who played for 20-years and featured a record 637 times at Prenton Park.

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Mugnall was a no nonsense and trusted defender (image: topsy.one)

However, it was never about accolades and awards for the player and coach, who just wanted to help improve the club he called home, speaking to the official club media following his leave in 2000 he said:

“I’ve been with the club for 21 years and Tranmere will always be a place I have fond memories of and it will be strange when I finally leave.

“People ask me about my best moments during my time here and I’d have to say the win over Exeter in 1987 is up there with the best of them. We had to win to stay in the league and to win that game was extremely rewarding.

“After that, the club never really looked back as it went on its roller-coaster ride. My Wembley appearances, promotions and helping the club establish itself in the First Division are all moments I’ll look back on fondly.”

Tranmere honoured Mungall along with seven other players and managers on their 125th anniversary, a fitting tribute to a career dedicated to the Super White Army.

 

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